Saturday, June 25, 2011

Family Meetings

We were in a bit of stand still. Something had been revealed about the RADish. We didn't want to tell her outright but I also didn't know when it happened. I quickly realized she had done a slew of things recently and she didn't know what I was talking about. So how do I root out the issue while protecting the child that revealed it? I was afraid coming out and saying so-in-so said xyz, RADish would then use that as reason for anger and manipulation of so-in-so.

Dawn, being the ever fabulous sounding board/sanity maintainer, shared something invaluable from her daughter's healing. Family meetings. Sort of like your typical family meetings but with a different intent.

Here the family is gathered together and told that family meetings are a safe place to share anything that has been weighing on your heart. So, in the latest battle in the War on RAD, we did just that. We began by acknowledging that things have been more than stressful in the house and that we see a lot of individual conversations happening but things aren't really resolving. So, Daddy and Mommy thought it was best for all of us to share together in a safe place. Then we can all know what is going on, hold each other accountable and help root out sin from our family. (this makes a lot of sense to them right now because we are reading Numbers, God's holiness and removing sin from the camps of Israel). This way we can all help each other's hearts get bigger, trust Mommy and Daddy and be safe.

We said is there anything anyone would like to share? Has anyone said anything or done anything that hurt you or upset you? Oh, the flood gates. :( from all of my kids. It didn't start with the offense that started this, but that did come out. They have been carrying so much in their little hearts as we just go about life. It allowed them to confront the one that hurt them. If they stated it to us, we had them restate it directly to the person. X, it really made me feel scared when you ABC. We did not request repentance, but rather said something like, "That is horrible." or "I am so sorry you were carrying that in your heart for so long." If they weren't sure how to articulate it directly, we helped them form their sentences. This was especially important for our peacemaker who just wants to act like the stress in her life is okay and it will all be okay.

It allowed the verbal ones a calm place to articulate hurt without sarcasm or unkind tones. It allowed the peacemaking, quieter ones a quiet place of safety to share things they have been hiding or placating.

It was interesting because instantly we could see where the relational ties were and where deep wounds were lying. When someone stated their pain to another and there was a connection, the latter immediately repented and sought to make it right. If there wasn't, the response was more like, "uh-huh, yeah, I did that." with a deadpan face.

Eventually there was repentance and reconciliation all around. New words and strategies for when these situations arise again. All of the children said it was a great idea and made everyone feel protected and loved.

Most importantly, everything was out in the open. RADish couldn't manipulate, twist or oppress anyone after being "caught."

Yep, Dawn's brilliant.


Andy and Kiara said...

Love, love, love this.

Simply Moms said...

Had a meeting last night.
ox from Dawn