Is your child a black and white thinker? Do you feel as though you are walking on egg shells? Do you make sure everything is “perfect” to avoid a meltdown?
If you said yes to any of these questions, you have a rigid child. A child that sees the world as black and white. It’s up to is to give them more gray. Some children get upset if you change the schedule, or give them the wrong cup, or drive down a different road to the grocery store. We have to change things up for these children. When we try to keep things too black and white for them they don’t learn how to handle changes.
Yes this sounds crazy. Yes you will cause your child some stress, but you will do it in small steps. These children do well with routines, visuals, calendars (all children do well with these). However, the more we change things up with some warnings, the easier it will get. Acknowledge the struggle. Acknowledge their emotions. Pay attention to the effort not the end result. Show them that when life doesn’t go as planned things can still work out.
In order to do this you will have to plan ahead. You will have to prepare yourself for the anger, tears and meltdowns. Stay consistent. This may take sometime, but it will be worth it.
Start preparing your child for life. We can’t always protect them. They will learn how to deal with life stressors and be more confident and capable children.