Podcast Episode 270: Why Connection Works So Much Better Than Correction Transcripts

Please note: Transcripts for the No Guilt Mom Podcast were created using AI. As a result, there may be some minor errors.

Michelle Kenney: We bear witness to our child’s life with empathy as opposed to fixing things or teaching things or correcting. 

JoAnn Crohn: Welcome to the No Guilt Mom podcast. I am your host, JoAnn Crohn, joined here by my lovely co host, Brie Tucker.

Brie Tucker: Why, hello, hello everybody. How are you?

JoAnn Crohn: We get so into it today. Oh my goodness. Like guys, this is, was our third live in our podcast Facebook group. And it is like the most. Fun. I am having podcasting.

Brie Tucker: It is! I love it. I’ve been telling JoAnn, it’s this weird thing where I feel like sometimes we’re in this void where we record. and because it’s just the two of us, I only see you on the screen. Except for my, I do see my dog sitting off to the left of my desk, going, wagging his tail. That’s about it.

So I forget sometimes that people actually listen. and that what we’re saying is, They feel it too. And it’s so great because in this group, we get to see it in real time. Like people being like, yes. huh. I totally feel that way. I have that too. Or like even asking questions, giving that feedback. I’m like, Oh, it’s very energizing.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. So the Facebook group is completely free. So we have a link for you right down there in the show notes. Come and join and you get to watch us live. And we also work your questions into the podcast episode too. So you’ll hear us shout out a lot of people in here. And they’re the ones joining us on our live broadcast.

So it’s a ton of fun. And we can’t wait for you to hear this conversation with Michelle Kinney. She’s the founder and CEO of Peace and Parenting. She’s the author of Unpunished, host of the Peace and Parenting podcast, and mom to two teenage girls. She helps parents move away from punishments and into a more connected way to parent, all the while using limits and boundaries instead of punishments and consequences to form deep bonded and long lasting relationships. And we hope you enjoy our conversation with Michelle.

Okay, I am pushing the live button, but you know, it takes people a while to get on, so it is okay. and I’ll guide you into the episode as soon as people are on and we say hello to them and everything like that, so. But you’re a teacher, right? You’re a former teacher? 

Michelle Kenney: Yeah. 13 years in public school. 

JoAnn Crohn: What grade did you teach? 

Michelle Kenney: High school. 

JoAnn Crohn: High school! What subject then? 

Michelle Kenney: Spanish. 

JoAnn Crohn: Really? So, what was your background in Spanish before you became a teacher?

Michelle Kenney: Nothing. I went to, I lived in Spain and I, I was going to flunk out of college and the only credits I had were Spanish credits. And so I was like, Oh, I guess I’m a Spanish major now, because I’d gone to Spain and I got all these credits. So then I ended up going to get my master’s in Spanish. 

JoAnn Crohn: That is fascinating. I’m trying to learn Spanish right now and it’s Duolingo all the way. 

Michelle Kenney: Oh yeah, that’s that. That works though. I’ve heard it really works. 

JoAnn Crohn: it’s really good. Like, my comprehension has definitely gone up. I do not feel very comfortable speaking Spanish. Brie’s husband actually is a fluent Spanish speaker and I have to get, some margaritas in me before I can even try it 

Michelle Kenney: Spray your way before you make 

Brie Tucker: I’m smiling because I’m the worst wife in the world because I can speak Spanish to maybe a one year old. 

Michelle Kenney: No, 

Brie Tucker: my level. And here’s my best friend, like learning Spanish. And I just look at my husband and smile about my eyes. I love you. I know Spanish is your first language, but I suck. 

JoAnn Crohn: I learned a new phrase, Brie. I learned a new phrase,me duela la cabeza. I have a headache.

Brie Tucker: Oh! Okay,

JoAnn Crohn: I was 

Brie Tucker: do need to learn that. 

JoAnn Crohn: so useful for us. We could just, I’ll just teach you that phrase and you tell Miguel and it’ll be fine. It’ll 

Brie Tucker: I shall. I definitely need to learn that phrase for sure. So, yeah,

JoAnn Crohn: No, we have headaches often. Now, as soon as that came out of my mouth, I realized what that sounded like. She, I know! That’s

Michelle Kenney: She could use it when She, has a headache or when she doesn’t have a headache. 

Brie Tucker: wait!

JoAnn Crohn: like! And I’m like, wait a minute, no! Brie actually has, we have migraines. So, it’s 

Brie Tucker: I didn’t even catch that. I’m like, yes, yes, yes. Oh my God. Yes. Yeah. 

JoAnn Crohn: we have to leave that one in.

Brie Tucker: So wait, so before we get on the live episode, I want people to know so the episode, like we both recently listened to your podcast episode, Michelle, we talked about it briefly before about the, what we’re going to talk about in the episode here about almost losing your relationship with your kid. And I was like, I really, really want to send that to my ex because we’re dealing with some struggles in our house and man, I think that if he had heard that, Or if he, if he was to hear that episode, it might actually, you know how like you can’t hear things from your, your kids can’t hear it from you? 

Michelle Kenney: Yep. Yep. And your, partner can’t hear it from you And your ex definitely can’t. hear it from you. 

Brie Tucker: Oh, definitely can’t. No. No. 

Michelle Kenney: somebody else needs to send it to him, not, maybe you could send him this episode. Oh no. Cause we 

JoAnn Crohn: No, because we’re on it! 

Michelle Kenney: Whoopsie Daisy. 

JoAnn Crohn: Whoops, whoops, 

Brie Tucker: yet officially. Like, we could have a clean lead

JoAnn Crohn: No, I think, no, we should have all of this on it. Yeah. 

Brie Tucker: For people that are listening to this episode, if they don’t know, we’re recording this during our World Famous Podcast Week. No Guilt Mom

JoAnn Crohn: Our world famous. Yes. And we’re streaming live, streaming live in the group. but we have Michelle, everyone listening to us on Facebook. I’d like to introduce you to Michelle Kenny. She has the Peace and Parenting podcast. And is just a wealth of information and knowledge about using connection and relationships over punishments and consequences, which we are so down with here and Michelle, we were both talking like we both listened to your episode about almost losing the relationship with your teenage daughter. And can you tell us like a little bit about that story?

Michelle Kenney: Yep. I can. Thank you guys for having me and thanks for the beautiful welcome and the introduction. I appreciate it. I started out parenting with this idea of punishments and rewards because That’s what I knew. And I was a teacher for 13 years. And when you went to go be a teacher in the college, they told you, use punishments and rewards. get a sticker chart, clip up, clip down, 

JoAnn Crohn: The My First Day of School book by Harry Wong. Got that? Yes.

Michelle Kenney: Exactly. And so I was like, oh, cool, I’ll just run my house like a classroom. Well, my beautiful now 18 year old daughter was not having that. She was not going to be punished and rewarded. And she was strong and feisty and spicy. And she would just push and push and push and push at every turn.

And I would just push back. Cause I’m pretty strong myself. And so we got into this place where it was just felt horrible. She was pushing and I was pushing and I was punishing and sending her to timeout and she was crying and then she started taking it out on her sister and so their relationship started to really rupture and I was feeling crappy and finally one day I was like something has to change and It’s definitely not going to be her.

So it’s gotta be me and I found connective parenting and the rest is history because it was the only thing that, that she responded to. But had I stuck on that path of punishments and consequences and rewards, I truly believe we would be in this horrible schism now because as kids get older, they get stronger and more defiant and more rebellious. And that was the kind of kid she was. That was her temperament. and so I feel like, I don’t know where we would have been, but it wouldn’t have been good.

JoAnn Crohn: How old was she when you realized that the punishments and rewards just were not working? 

Michelle Kenney: Five. 

JoAnn Crohn: Five. Yeah, I,

Brie Tucker: in that podcast episode you talk about a time where she ran out into the street.

Michelle Kenney: Oh, yeah, the, the pumpkin patch, yeah, she ran out into the street, uh huh, with her little, yeah, she just ran right into the street in L. A. in like a four lane highway. 

JoAnn Crohn: Oh, fun. Yeah. 

Brie Tucker: Yeah.

Michelle Kenney: And most people would say, scream at her, yell at her, give her the consequence, but you do that to a kid like her, and it only makes it worse. 

Brie Tucker: Makes her sit in the middle of the freeway or sit in the middle of the street with everybody else out

Michelle Kenney: Just keep running. She’s not gonna stop. She doesn’t care. 

Brie Tucker: She’d be like, 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. No, I feel like I’ve seen this in a couple friends and their parenting approach where like they see this pushback from their kids and they end up calling their kids names like, Oh, She’s so sassy. Or she’s she’s rebellious. And I just have to be really firm with her and I have to be really hard with her. And. You found that was not The case with your child like what was like the First kind of steps that? you took Where you started seeing some change in your relationship with her and her behavior 

Michelle Kenney: Yeah. good question. So I,she tried to hold her sister underneath the water in the pool 

JoAnn Crohn: Hmm 

Michelle Kenney: because she was so mad at her. And I dove in and pulled them out. And I was like, Oh my God, what the hell are you doing? Like losing my mind. And I went to a school retreat that next day and I, they, passed the talking stick. and everyone was talking about their kids. And I got the talking stick and just started bawling. 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah 

Michelle Kenney: And this woman came up to me and she’s like, have you heard of hand in hand parenting? And I was like, no. She’s like, Oh, you, maybe you should check them out. I have a coach. And I was like, great. She’s hired. Like, who is she? I have no idea what, how much does she cause? 

Brie Tucker: somebody that can help me with this.

Michelle Kenney: there’s a parenting coach. Who the hell knew that, you know, 13 years ago. So I hired this woman and the first day she came, I, was like, I’m sorry. Did you say that it just takes connection?why isn’t anybody telling anybody this? Like, what’s wrong with you? Why aren’t you guys, telling everyone? And, and so I went home with my daughter that first day, and I started doing special time with her, and it was like magic. It was like magic. She just melted. She just started to be so loving and kind in just that one day. And it just was like a drug for me. So I was just like, no, I need more. I want to do more. I want her to feel better and better and better. And she did. 

Brie Tucker: right. 

Michelle Kenney: And so that was our trajectory. Yeah. 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, that’s so interesting because we hear a lot about, that one on one time that connection time with kids and there’s like also this worry among parents that if they are doing this connection time or you know We have parents in our community who I see devote their entire lives to their kids like, they are there at bedtime They are there at school like, homework time they’re there helping them And the kids still have behaviors and they think it’s because they don’t have this Designated one on one time So I kind of want like how do you see that And how do you see what you did with your daughter as different than this? That’s getting experienced by so many moms and moms are feeling guilty about 

Michelle Kenney: Yeah. First of all, your child’s behavior is not your fault. No matter what you do or what you say, your child’s behavior is not your fault. It’s not their fault. It’s just behavior. get ready for it. Be okay with it. Don’t blame yourself. Don’t blame yourself for any of this. Your kid is the most, Esme will walk in this door right now and tell me to shut up. And she’s the most connected kid I know. Because she’s a kid and she has behaviors, but we can’t blame ourselves. That’s the first thing.

JoAnn Crohn: Mm 

Michelle Kenney: Secondly, one on one time is like a 20 percent of Connected parenting. It helps. I just didn’t know what it was cuz I was like, oh no, I don’t play with my kids. 

Brie Tucker: Well, we grew up in the 80s, right? our examples were the whole, like, Less is more, when your father comes home, you’re gonna get it, kids are supposed to be seen, not heard, like, all of that. 

Michelle Kenney: Let yourself in the house and get a snack. You’re okay it’s like 

Brie Tucker: you something to cry about, like, all of that.

Michelle Kenney: Special time my ass. There was no special time. 

JoAnn Crohn: There was no, special time. What are they talking about?

Michelle Kenney: So I was like, no, no, I cook meals. I thought I was doing better than my mom. I was like cooking meals and on the PTA. I was like, dude, I’m like amazing, right? I’m home every day. Like I don’t have, my kids aren’t wearing a key around their neck. like they’ve, they’ve got it. 

Brie Tucker: Exactly! That’s what I like for head kids, I’m like, I’m gonna be there I’m not gonna have them go home after school with nobody there, and that’s gonna be my crown achievement.

Michelle Kenney: and that’s great and amazing. And it is connection And I thought when I heard it I was like Oh, I never did that. So for me, it was monumental. Oh, I got to play with my kids. Wow. Somebody give me a star. this is 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. 

Michelle Kenney: But it is only one of so many components to connective parenting. and I’m just going to give you the Basic synopsis, but there’s also subsets of all of that stuff. Empathy is a huge thing. Not fixing your kid’s problems is a huge thing in connective parenting, right? Not using consequences and punishments is another huge thing. You use those things, you erode connection. Another thing is play, correction with play. Don’t correct your kid, but use play instead. Another idea is let them fail. If you see failure coming, allow it. Do not intervene unless they’re going to die,

JoAnn Crohn: Yes. 

Michelle Kenney: There’s, there’s so many facets to connect to parenting. There’s also this piece, Like, you have to take care of yourself. If you’re a mess, you’re never going to be able to do any parenting method. 

JoAnn Crohn: Very true. No, it’s very true. It’s one of the proponents of no guilt mom. like, the best mom is a happy mom. You have to take care of yourself to be a good parent. And we’re going to get into it, more right after this. Everyone So we were talking about the components of connected parenting, let’s get into them one by one, just a few of them that I think would be so beneficial.

The first one is this use of empathy with kids. Now, When we talk about empathy, this is not something like I was trained as a teacher to use empathy, surprisingly. and what do you see it defined as when you’re like using empathy with your kids, Michelle? 

Michelle Kenney: You know, it’s interesting because I’ve had this whole journey with empathy because I like you. I didn’t know how to use empathy. My parents were not empathic. And so when I first got to my kids, I was Like I see you’re really upset. That sucks. Like I was like, what are you doing robot? and so I really had to train myself to be empathic when they were having feelings. And when people were empathic to me, I was like, no, no, it’s fine. I’m fine. I’m fine. I don’t know. Why, why are you, you know, why are you don’t have to feel bad for me. And so I didn’t know how to receive empathy. I didn’t know how to give it and I had to really teach myself. And what I found is that as, and as I teach people and I’ve had, thousands of people go through my programs, it’s We sometimes get to a place where we over empathize, especially in gentle, connected parenting. 

But there’s this sweet spot, I, think, where you can say like, I hear you. I see you and I totally understand this is hard for you. A very matter of fact, like I’m confirming your feelings for you, but I’m not like, Oh my God, you poor thing. That’s not the kind of empathy we want to convey to our kids. We’re strong and sturdy and supportive in our empathy. And empathy can be for all kinds of things. Oh, you failed your math test. Instead of saying, Oh, I told you to study. You should have studied for your math tests. We stay. You failed your math test. That must not feel good. 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, 

Michelle Kenney: sorry. Now the empathy gets the child to reflect on why they failed, because they didn’t study. When we say, you should have studied, what are you doing? Now they’re mad at us because we’re judging them Instead we go to empathy to let them judge themselves. So 

JoAnn Crohn: and sometimes that’s harder for the kid to judge themselves like they’re actually looking at us for the reaction And When you put it back on them, they’re like, oh, this does not feel good.

Michelle Kenney: Yeah, and so empathy can be used in so many ways in connected parenting. It’s not just when they fall down and scratch their leg, right? it’s a lot of different places where things go awry. We bear witness. to our child’s life with empathy as opposed to fixing things or teaching things or correcting. 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. Now you mentioned over empathizing What does that look like? 

Michelle Kenney: I think it’s like that sickeningly sweet, constant talking, Oh my gosh, everything’s gonna be okay. Oh, mommy loves you. you don’t have to be upset. It’s alright. You know, it’s like the constant chatter of, like, words to try to make the kid feel like you understand. it almost feels like anxiety a little. 

JoAnn Crohn: Oh, yeah I could see that because when you’re constantly talking it’s more the parent trying to relieve their anxiety that everything will be okay versus for the child. It’s also hard to get kids out of that slump because I have situations with my kids where they’re totally down on themselves and like crying and you go and you be empathetic. And something like this just happened to me last night where I’m like, Oh, that totally sucks. this sucks that you’re going through it. And then after a bit, I’m like, I need to go make my breakfast, come with me to the kitchen. And where she had been crying for. Quite a while getting everything out, just getting out of that situation while still being empathetic helped her more than staying within those feelings. Sorry! 

Michelle Kenney: Every temperament is different. We can’t blanket statement parenting. And that’s why people are like, well, you gave me an example in a podcast on Thursday the 25th of April and it didn’t work. And I’m like, Yeah. Okay. Well, sorry. Like it’s not for everyone. 

Brie Tucker: very true because like we live in this society now where everything is like instant gratification. We can get things customized to us so easily that I feel like, especially when it does come to parenting. That people are starting to look for that, that okay, well, I need, why am I not able to like, find like the customized perfect answer out there in the general public? Well, it’s because like you just said, like every situation is different. Like nobody can anticipate every possible need that every possible scenario is going to happen. And then even you have your two kids, Or multiple, more than two that raised in the same family, same genes, but are completely different in the way that you need to react and speak with them and handle them.

Michelle Kenney: Totally. And so we say like, empathy is good, right? It works for all kids. How you apply it, when you apply it, how you say things, what you don’t say Is all different. So connection works. It’s just a matter of the application. And I think you, you struck on something really interesting, Bri, is that we’re looking for the perfect answer in parenting because we’re looking to be the perfect parent. And we cannot be the perfect parent. There’s no such thing. Your kids are not going to be perfect. You’re not going to be perfect. so stop trying to do it. All right. 

Brie Tucker: That’s so much pressure. That 

Michelle Kenney: Do it good 

JoAnn Crohn: good enough. Be the world’s most okay est parent.

Michelle Kenney: right? I screw up all the time. Like, just like, it’s okay, everybody. You’re not, Yeah. you’re going to say the wrong thing to your damn kid, and they’re going to have a hard time, and you’re going to apologize, and that’s it. It’s cool. It’s fine.

JoAnn Crohn: It’s funny because even though I specialize in parenting, I would have nothing to write about if I didn’t screw up. I screw up all the time as well, like the best stories come from when you screw up and when you learn something and when you’re able to take something from it. That’s how all human growth happens.

I want to backtrack a little bit because it does go along with what we were saying before about this one on one time and with all kids being different. This is a question that came, to us from our podcast group and, Christy wants to know about this one on one time. Is it individual to the child and does it go hand in hand with the love languagesBecause she feels like one of her children may want connections, but the other doesn’t care about one on one time. What do you say with that one? Like you see a child doesn’t care about one on one time or doesn’t perceive to care about it. 

Michelle Kenney: I think you’re right. I think it’s perception. I think every child wants,we’re wired to connect. Our limbic systems are wired to connect with other people’s limbic systems. we live in packs for a reason and families for a reason. I think maybe that child might be having a hard time I don’t know. It’d be so hard for me to guesstimations because I’d have to really sit with the family and say okay, well, what has happened? Did they get a new brother or sister lately? That’s a big thing. Did they change schools? Did You move? Is there a divorce? I don’t know what’s going on in these families, but there could be something big or there could be something small.

It could be that a child just isn’t doing well in this particular season of their life. And so they’re. Their temperament is to retreat or withdraw as opposed to lash out and it. might take more work for us to get them to connect, but I wouldn’t give up on connection because it. is such a beautiful part of this parenting paradigm. We all want to be connected to our kids and they want to be connected to us.

Brie Tucker: I would add on to that, that I think that when it comes to, talking about the love languages, what that might be. It just like articulating or bringing to light is that your child likes to do connection in a different way than what you were thinking. like for my daughter, she’s all about one on one time.

She would tell you she’s not. She’s all about, like having like words of affirmation and everything. And while she does enjoy that, she likes being the center of my attention. She likes being the only one I am focusing on. 

That I am doing things with, whereas my son prefers to not be the center of attention. For him, connection would be like playing a video game side by side and not really talking. But that still connection is just in a completely different way. A completely different way of doing it.

Michelle Kenney: We say that when you do special time, it. should be 100 percent child driven. That’s how you avoid getting into these hard. moments is you say, I’m here, whatever you want to do. You want me to watch you play the video game? Awesome. You want to color? Cool. I’m going to be the best colorer. I’m going to be the best video game watcher. And you’re so into it that you lure them into you. 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, I hear you say that and yet if I have to watch another video that is not funny on YouTube, I will 

Michelle Kenney: hate special time. 

JoAnn Crohn: I hate it! Thank you for saying that, Michelle, because I hate it. I 

Brie Tucker: Well, I hate video games. I hate video 

JoAnn Crohn: is so hilarious! We’re all like, gleed in and we’re like, we all hate it.

Michelle Kenney: It’s horrible. Esme and Pia wanted to jump on the trampoline at six o’clock in the morning every day for four years. 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah,

Brie Tucker: Oh, 

Michelle Kenney: wanted to kill myself. I did. I pee myself every time.

JoAnn Crohn: I like special time. I really try to find exactly what I am interested in that my kids are also interested in so we could do it together. I finally found it like my son actually loves to play chess. I don’t like chess. Like that’s that’s my husband and my son’s activity. 

Brie Tucker: I get my butt kicked every time I try to play with anybody. 

JoAnn Crohn: What he really likes to do is he watches these YouTube videos, by a YouTuber named Jeb Brooks. And Jeb Brooks does like first class airline experiences. So he like totally documents his trip on like Etihad Airlines in like the presidential suite. So you like see everything and 

Michelle Kenney: Yes, 

JoAnn Crohn: I like this. Yes. We will watch this together. This is enjoyable. Jeb. 

Michelle Kenney: Moms over here. 

Brie Tucker: Oh geez, right? okay, my daughter went through the Dance Moms and right now she’s on this whole, I want to spend time with you. Let’s watch Vampire Diaries together. Shoot me now.

JoAnn Crohn: Shoot me. 

Brie Tucker: so hard. Dance moms was bad enough because I’m watching it with an early childhood background going like this is trauma. Do you guys see the trauma on that kid’s face? This is so not okay with this on television. They televise this crap 

Michelle Kenney: it’s horrible. 

JoAnn Crohn: It’s a horrible show. It’s a horrible show. Well, right after this break, we’re going to get into consequences and rewards. So, uh, right after this. We were talking before about empathy and connected parenting.

Let’s move into that, rewards and punishments. before we get too deep into that though, we had a question in our Facebook group about, a five-year-old testing. His mom’s patients. but they just found out that she has the five year old has ADHD and dyslexia the 13 year old is also testing her patients He gives her mouth a lot like what do you say to moms in this scenario? When they’re dealing with kid behavior and they know that there is a diagnosis there 

Michelle Kenney: Yeah, so I think, we’ve realized that over half the people that we work with have a kid who has either ADHD or autism or Asperger’s or some sort of diagnosis ODD, we see a lot of kids because Those parents are like, I, don’t know what else to do. Like I’ve tried everything and this lady over here says that she can help us.

So we’re going to try her and they do. And what I’ve seen with these kids. who have ADHD is they thrive in connection. And what society has really said for a lot of them is rewards and punishments is The way to go. And it really doesn’t serve them. And, I think the parents get really frustrated and then the kids don’t respond to it And then everyone’s really having a hard time.

But I’d say to the. This lovely parent, try connection. It really does work. It will help your kid feel better and they’ll do better. Now, will that get rid of the ADHD? No, but we got to work with what we have. And we hope that, You know, their brains are wired differently, but we want to get their brains online. So we want to make sure that their brains are not, they haven’t offline and connection brings a child online. So we want to get that brain, Probably doesn’t have very good executive functioning, working better, and Connection does that.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, absolutely. I come from a family, ADHD runs in my family. so my dad diagnosed ADHD. My sister diagnosed ADHD. I have diagnosed ADHD. And so like I saw behaviors and situations growing up where they were unexplainable. Then it was more like people losing their temper. my sister, not listening,things that were labeled as behavior problems, which could be directly to. ADHD. and I see that now in my nephew as well. And you’re absolutely right, Michelle, like even like from a personal standpoint, connection works so well with him. if somebody tells him, no, put that down. He’ll be like, why put that down? Why? And he will, like, he’s four, almost five. But if you go up to him and be like, Hey bud, we need to like, go like to the store right now. Let me help you. Let’s go over here together and you just connect with him and you’re like doing stuff with him and engaged with him. That is where he just thrives and shines. So let’s talk about that rewards versus punishments. That thing that we were trained so well as a teacher, which honestly didn’t even work in the classroom. I mean, what did you see with that? 

Michelle Kenney: no connection worked in the classroom. I had

JoAnn Crohn: Connection worked. 

Michelle Kenney: with my kids. The ones that I really connected with, they did amazing. And so it’s just like, of course, when you feel better about the relationship that you share with the person who’s in charge of you, you actually want to do what They say.

You want to follow their lead. they have influence. And so one of the things about, rewards and punishments is that they erode connection because they’re manipulations. Do you want to be manipulated? Would you manipulate your spouse? Would You manipulate your best friend or your sister or your brother?

Would You say, if You do that for me, then I’ll give You I’ll let you have extra iPad time.it doesn’t make any sense when you think about it in relationships outside of children. and so why would it. make any sense in relationships with kids Who wants to be treated like 

Brie Tucker: Well, you also don’t want them to feel like that’s an appropriate way to do things. God forbid they end up in a relationship later in life where their spouse or partner disrespects them, isn’t caring, isn’t loving, but manipulates them in a way like, Oh, I know I was a real jerk last night, but Here’s a new purse, don’t, 

Michelle Kenney: I might go for that actually. 

Brie Tucker: like, like, okay, I was a real jerk for the last year. Here’s a purse. I hope that makes up for it. I’m not gonna change my behavior. I’m not gonna change what I’m doing, right? Like it just builds upon that. Oh, because we do that, right? Like we take what we saw growing up and if we didn’t see anything massively wrong with it, then we’re like, okay, that’s healthy.

Michelle Kenney: Yeah. And even when we see something’s wrong with it, it becomes our default because we don’t know what else to do. I think the rewards piece too is like, rewards are just bribes, Right. I’m bribing you to do something and for a strong willed kid or an ADHD kid or an ODD kid or some of these kids that are have fiery personalities, they don’t want to be bribed.

They think it’s an assault on their persona and They will fight against it at every moment, or they’ll succumb to it because they want the treat so badly, but then it makes the next behavior bad because they’re resentful because they fell for it. And rewards are just punishments in disguise, right? You don’t get the, reward. You feel punished. You do take the reward. You feel manipulated. It’s all very icky and there’s no, we don’t need it. We really don’t. Our kids are great kids. They want to follow our lead. They’re so sweet. We just have to not expect perfection.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, exactly like behaviors behavior all behaviors communication It’s telling you something about that moment in time And that is all that we can do as parents It’s funny like with the rewards and punishments sometimes my kids who know You that is not my method of parenting will come up to me and be like, so mom, I’m getting these good grades. Can you pay me?

Brie Tucker: Oh my God. Which one said that to you? I’m going to go give them a stern face next

JoAnn Crohn: both of them want money for grades, they don’t want it to be like an incentive for grades. They’re just like, Hey, I’m getting these good grades anyway. So how about you just pay me?

Michelle Kenney: would you give me? some money? 

Brie Tucker: listen to our podcast. You need to get them listening to the podcast. We just talked about that. Just talked about that. That’s a passionate aspect for me right there. so what we’re talking about in here is that connection, because We hear people say, it, and enjoy the time. You only have 18 like birthdays. You only have so many weeks. You only have 50 weekends a year, like all that kind of stuff. And,but you don’t like realistically, if you have established a good connection with your child, you have the rest of your life with them and the rest of their life with you. And 

Michelle Kenney: right. 

Brie Tucker: yeah, 

Michelle Kenney: can’t bribe them to come see you. I mean, I guess you could, you can’t threaten them because at some point it’s like, it’s not worth it. Right. and So, you want them to want to be with you. They’re only going to want to be with you. If you’ve treated them well, if you’ve manipulated them, I love people will say, I can’t believe you call your daughter, your best friend. And I’m like, I am her best friend. She’s not my best friend. Like she tells me everything. I don’t tell her everything. But the, but the idea is that I want to treat her as good as I would my best friend, because I want her to want to spend my life with me.

JoAnn Crohn: Exactly. 

Brie Tucker: want her to feel what it’s like to be respected. And cared for in a relationship 

JoAnn Crohn: And that relationships are not perfect, happy, rosy things all the time,you can argue, you can disagree, and the most important thing is to repair afterwards. And to make sure, you’re explaining yourself as well, because I think some parents really give themselves a hard time for, for losing their temper or for acting in a certain way.

Michelle Kenney: So many parents, I posted something like, how can we expect a kid to be regulated when they’re coming from families with children? It’s, parents who are not regulated and, you know, everyone’s like, I can’t regulate, I can’t regulate. I’m beating myself. I’m like, listen, this is just a food for thought.

Like we, none of us can always regulate. That’s not realistic. don’t beat yourself up. You are doing So, much more than what your parents did, right? You’re apologizing. You’re taking responsibility. You’re making amends. My dad never apologized to me, 

JoAnn Crohn: No. 

Michelle Kenney: Never, not one time. I was, I’m still waiting. If he apologized to me today, I would be so happy. Just one apology would be like, make my day. Imagine these kids who are getting apologies every time we screw up. What an incredible thing for them. They get to not feel responsible for our dysregulation.

Brie Tucker: And we’re hopefully not continuing that cycle of, you have to be perfect. 

Like we’re fighting against that perception of perfection, because that is so much stress, so much pressure for kids. If they think that they have to always have it together and always be perfect or else they’re going to be less than 

JoAnn Crohn: Yes, exactly.

Brie Tucker: You’re human. We’re all human. 

Michelle Kenney: Then we end up being parents who beat ourselves up. 

JoAnn Crohn: I know. Michelle, we always end a podcast with this question. What are you excited about that’s coming up for you 

Michelle Kenney: Oh! Let’s see. So, two things. Personally, I’m taking my 18 year old to Europe this summer, and so that’s super 

JoAnn Crohn: Where are you going in Europe? It’s funny because our previous guest is also going to Europe. Spain! 

Brie Tucker: Oh my gosh! She’s going to Portugal!

Michelle Kenney: Oh my god, we’re right next to each other! 

JoAnn Crohn: right next to each other.

Brie Tucker: crazy!

JoAnn Crohn: That’s exciting!

Brie Tucker: Spain! We’re in Spain!

Michelle Kenney: We’re going to Barcelona and Menorca. 

Brie Tucker: We have to They need to go get the 

JoAnn Crohn: both. Oh my gosh. We went to both last year. Not last year. 2021. Brie and I went on a girls cruise with our friend Shayna and Barcelona was one. They have this shop right across from the La Familia Sagrada, The big 

Brie Tucker: The 

Michelle Kenney: The theater, 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, the cathedral. it’s penis waffles. Shape of the penis. Yes, right there by the by this

Brie Tucker: I’m sorry. 

Michelle Kenney: show my daughter.

JoAnn Crohn: Yes 

Brie Tucker: I have a, I have a childish sense of humor. I thought It was hilarious.

Michelle Kenney: Yeah. It 

JoAnn Crohn: so many pictures and then Mallorca There’s a little train ride to this little like cute little village I can’t remember what the village’s name is, but it’s this old wooden train that goes through the mountains

Brie Tucker: Oh yeah.

Michelle Kenney: sweet. 

JoAnn Crohn: it was it’s such a

Brie Tucker: But hopefully you’re going to get to spend more time than we did. We had one, like two days. So I’m, I’m assuming if you’re going all the way to Spain, you’re going to spend more than two days

Michelle Kenney: yeah, we’re going to spend 10 days. It should be good. Yeah, 

JoAnn Crohn: That’s exciting. That’s exciting. Well, thank you so much Michelle for coming on. I had the best time like this is 

Michelle Kenney: having me. I so appreciate it. Okay, thanks. 

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, we’ll talk to you later. Every so often, I like to pull and read our reviews, Brie, because they’re great.

Brie Tucker: nice.

JoAnn Crohn: so nice.

Brie Tucker: like, they’re like a warm virtual hug from our listeners. So,

JoAnn Crohn: And if you haven’t left us a review yet on Apple Podcasts, if we could ask you please. Please because we love it so much and it helps actually our podcasts reach more moms who really need the encouragement and the support. So you’re doing a solid for everyone. I want to read this one from Brittany.

She says, you’re new best friends. She gave us five stars, Brie. And she says, being a mom isn’t easy. At times you may feel all alone, but you don’t have to be. I love listening to JoAnn and Brie as I go on my walk around my neighborhood, fold the laundry or feed my kids. I feel like I have friends next to me supporting me along this journey of motherhood. Give their podcast a listen. It sure helps me along the way as I navigate being a mom to five kids.

Brie Tucker: Brittany, we are there for you, and we are cheering you along the way. That is so awesome. Thank you.

JoAnn Crohn: Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I love reading these. I just go through all the time and like Brie, how you said before, you’re like, sometimes you forget people are listening. Like sometimes I forget people I went to high school with listen and I’m like, what? What?

Brie Tucker: I know.

JoAnn Crohn: I said that what?

Brie Tucker: Like I was telling you the other day, I got a, message from my old high school, old high school, my college roommate and bestie, Jess. And she was like, I, she’s I’m not really a big podcast person. And I’ll admit, I didn’t really listen to your podcast, but I heard an episode the other day and oh my God, I love it.

It is so amazing. And now she’s in our podcast group. She shared our podcast on her page the other day on Facebook. I’m like, Oh my gosh. People listen and people listen that know me. That’s the weird part. I’m like, Oh,

JoAnn Crohn: Well, it’s been completely fun too. I mean, we’re coming up four years in September, beginning of September of doing this, which is crazy, but it just gets better and better and we get to meet more interesting people and it’s tons of fun and we never run out of stuff to talk about. That’s something like I was worried about starting a podcast. I’m like, what if we run out of stuff to talk about? Never

Brie Tucker: never ends. that’s the fun. That’s the thing about parenting. Like even when we’re older, we’re still going to have stuff. honestly, I’m turning 45 this year and my parents still have stories that they can share about you from even, or share about me from even a week ago. They’re

JoAnn Crohn: still parents. So Parenting, it never really ends, it’s just that fun ongoing carousel and it’s all about the ride, Absolutely. But remember, on top of it all, the best mom is a happy mom. Take care of you, and we’ll talk to you later.

Brie Tucker: Thanks for stopping by.

Brie Tucker

COO/ Podcast Producer at No Guilt Mom
Brie Tucker has over 20 years of experience coaching parents with a background in early childhood and special needs. She holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Central Missouri and is certified in Positive Discipline as well as a Happiest Baby Educator.

She’s a divorced mom to two teenagers.

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