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Jesper Juul "Not for Love"


After reading "Your competent family", a book that, to put it mildly, did not reach for "Out of love" with a great deal of caution so as not to write "skepticism" ... and although it is difficult to admit, I experienced a dazzle. Suddenly I understood why the author has such a large number of fans, parents, who wait with tension for each publication and listen to his statements with interest. My bad luck was that I started my adventure with the Danish author's publications from not the best position. The one whose reviews you will read below defends a good name and confirms the clear thesis that not all "works" need to be brilliant.

Be honest

Jesper Juul in "Out of Love" writes about what many people subconsciously know, but do not want to admit it. Namely, that we enter the role of parents uncertainly, duplicating known patterns and following a well-worn path of conduct, we walk in the footsteps of our parents, grandparents ... Instead of showing the child what we really are, we try to enter the "skin" of the parent. Saying what we think we should, not what we really want to say. We are still pretending, which causes frustration and eternal fatigue ... on each side.

Juul has no doubt that a parent should always say NO when he really feels that he wants to say it. Even at the cost of the child's temporary worse mood. He should say it in such a way that it was not in this falsehood: without using a luscious tone, strange diminutive, and even more so to show his own authority, he should not resort to arguments that are to arouse fear: for anger, coercion or punishment. When we say NO, our tone, facial expressions and gestures must say the same. Otherwise, the child will quickly pick up falsehood and stop listening to us.

Do not renounce your own needs

One of the parent's main problems is renunciation of self. Moms have a special problem with this, who, after having a child, as one of the bloggers put it nicely, suddenly forget that they are also women or just people.

Of course, there is no doubt that in the first few months childcare requires, in a sense, "forgetting" about yourself ... You need to meet the needs of the child at every step, and our own naturally be taken to the background. Juul writes that this time lasts up to 18 months of age. In my opinion, definitely shorter, but this is not the point to argue about when it really begins to raise a child, but to change as soon as possible from a "robot that meets every need of a toddler", change into a man who has his own life, own needs, which may sometimes be in a worse mood or who simply want to relax in the world.

Juul writes outright: whoever denies his own needs will soon feel that life is beyond him. Simple? Seemingly obvious, and yet so many people forget about it ... Who will be guilty? Of course the parent, but unfortunately the responsibility will be passed on to the child. It will suffer the most.

The parent is not a servant

Sometimes it is easier to handle a child, do something for it, not wait until it can do it itself. However, the point is not that it would be easier, but that it would be better. For baby. In the long term, not at the moment.

Jesper Juul recommends that in the case of a child aged 18 months, a toddler who is already confidently moving on his feet and begins to talk a lot, change the way he behaves. Systematically and consistently switch from the "service" function to the "parent person" function. Showing the child his personality, authority, requirements, values ​​and needs.

Why is this so important? Because children eternally served, as Juul argues, are similar to toddlers from some rich families. For children who spend most of their time with babysitters or sent to various types of activities, or simply to the nursery. Every person who accompanies them is servant in a way. There is a lack of real interpersonal relationships. Especially honesty, which we can only afford among people close to us.
Juul sees a great danger in confusing concepts such as institution and family, upbringing and pedagogy, parents and staff. He emphasizes that the way of dealing with the toddler at home should be different than in kindergarten or nursery. The parent is to set boundaries and talk about their own needs. The rules and principles of institutions in which children are staying are something different, and life is just something different.

Repetition and consistency

Jesper Juul is also building a different way of understanding the consequences. He notes that a parent, being an authentic person, does not have to stick to all the rules by force. The most important are those that relate to his personal, inviolable canon of values. It is also surprising for an older child to ask the toddler to let his parent think about his or her consent. Also, do not be afraid of discussions during which the school child will try to convince you to his own arguments.

The easiest is what seems to be the hardest at first. Constant repetition by a parent between the first and around four years of age, what the child is allowed and what is not. Over time, the bar is raised higher ... and all falsehood and mistakes made in raising a small child come to light and it is very difficult to mask them.

Why is NOT a parent so important?

Because it allows you to build integrity. Teaches children the art of refusing. It gives him weapons in the form of confidence and belief that one cannot agree on everything. In this way, it builds self-esteem and cannot be overestimated by the method of defense, in times when hostility, persecution, aggression are common.

Finally, to encourage you to read this thin book, I will give voice to Juul:

Honest and firm is often NOT better for a child than forced YES. Many family conflicts arise when parents are unable to refuse a child, although they would like to do so. As parents, we must learn to say NO. If that was not enough, we should also learn to reconcile with the child's objection to it and confronting with all its consequences. Only in this way can we raise a strong, conscious child who sees clear differences between honest YES and flowing from the bottom of his heart NO.