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Do-Overs Are For Everyone…

Meet the Rodenbeck Family from Central Arkansas

Parents all over the world are experiencing “aha” moments of grace when things begin to change. Change in their hearts, their parenting motivation, their long-term parenting goals, and the way they see their kids. And, ultimately, their relationship with Christ.

Each week, we are excited to introduce you to parents who are able to finish the sentence, Things began to change when…. These stories of transformation are made possible because of the ongoing generosity of our Donor Team. This week, meet the Rodenbeck Family from Central Arkansas.

Rodenback Family YE Profile 1

Stressed and frazzled. I knew I wanted to get away from a behavior-based, authoritarian structure; I knew that “bad” behaviors often flow from unmet needs; I knew connection was important; I knew that kids (and all humans) need clear boundaries. But, I didn’t know how to put it all together and was often frustrated.

Before Connected Families, our family was a mixed bag of discipline strategies. (It still is sometimes, as we all are still growing). We’d have times of real connection, but I didn’t have great success gaining cooperation, so I’d resort to threats and punishment – which never yielded settled results. Then, a friend of mine invited me to take the Discipline That Connects With Your Child’s Heart online course with her.

Three distinct moments when I realized that things were changing in our family

  1. Things began to change when I realized that do-overs were for me, too. I’d been offering them to my kids for a long time, but it wasn’t until I realized that grace was something I could grasp when I’d yelled or been too harsh that they began to yield to a more settled and calm environment for all three of us. Asking for a do-over is one of my go-to’s now, and my kids are so quick to allow it – and are learning to ask for them, too.
  2. Things began to change when I heard the “gifts gone awry” mantra. I realized I hadn’t really been enjoying my kids. I started praying that God would show me their gifts, and boy, did he. I have delightful children, and those delights are apparent, even in misbehavior.
  3. Things began to change when I started working through the Sibling Conflict online course and realized I could apply the same principles for parent-child conflicts over obedience. We started doing a lot of problem-solving, and I began seeing cooperation from my littles more often.

 “Things began to change when I realized that do-overs were for me, too.”

Stacey Rodenbeck

While taking the DTC course, I remember that my oldest was struggling with tantrums, and everything I did seemed to ramp them up instead of calm them down. I was doing pretty well at the ‘slow and low” part but realized I wasn’t really doing the “listening” part of “slow, low, and listen.” I started to notice that she would ramp up when I touched her or picked her up.

One day, I knelt on the floor beside her instead of touching her. “You’re really upset,” I said. “I know you don’t like to be touched when you’re upset.” I held my hands up where she could see them. “I’m not going to touch you unless you ask me to. I’m just going to sit here next to you quietly, and you can let me know when you’re ready to talk or be touched.” It was amazing. What would have been an hour-long ordeal lasted 10 minutes. Since then, her tantrums have been far shorter and less traumatic for us both. They still happen, but we’ve built a culture of trust, and that feels so good.

Since taking Discipline That Connect With Your Child’s Heart for the first time a year ago, I’ve built on what I learned. A year later, I feel more confident, more connected to my kids, more sure of the boundaries I need to set, and more practiced at conflict resolution. It’s been such a beautiful journey.

Will you make change?

Consider a generous year-end donation so more families can finish the sentence, “Things began to change when…”. All 2023 donors will receive a sticker sheet to remind you of some of what you’ve learned through Connected Families.

“Things began to change when…”

Be part of the team that brings “aha” moments of grace to families.

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