Tales of a Tattler

“Moooooom!”

Do you remember the first time your tiny little one called you mama? Like me, you probably thought you could listen to their little voice call your name a million times and never get tired of hearing it!

…until they reach their talkative years and you want to hide when you hear their sweet little voice call your name for the millionth time IN ONE DAY!

When my kids turned about 3 years old I began noticing a pattern in their behavior. In the midst of the usual sibling complaints, it would seem that one of them was being over sensitive. It was usually the one tattling every ten minutes. The quick response was to ask them to stop tattling, work it out and to go find something else to do if they can’t get along with everyone else.

Anyone with me?

What I noticed, however, in the moments I was willing to slow down, stop multi-tasking and dig a little deeper, was that there was insecurity in the eyes of the tattler. If you take the time, you’ll hear another tale beyond the “he said/she said” stuff. The tale of insecurity, fear of rejection and a longing for reassurance.

I noticed that they were feeling mistreated or neglected by their siblings and sometimes even me! And when I thought back through my day, I realized that I hadn’t affirmed that little tattler all day. I hadn’t hugged her, told her she was beautiful or asked her how she was doing.

How quickly my thoughts shifted from irritation to empathy as I’d grab her up, hold her like a baby and tell her how much I loved her. No lie, I did this with my 10-year-old son just two weeks ago! And let me tell you, they just soak up your love and affection like a dry sponge. They need to know you see them and you hear them and you value them. In about 5 minutes, their love cup is full again and they hop off my lap to join their siblings and the tattling stops.

…well, at the least the over sensitive kind does!

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