Given the theme of the day I thought it would be good to remind parents (and teachers) that your kids love you – even when their words and behaviors don’t show it.  “My child slams doors, calls me evil and yells – but then at other times approaches me from behind, gives me an unprompted hug and tells me he loves me.  It’s like I have a crazy temperamental cat.  That’s not normal.  Is it?”  Actually, yes.  Yes, it is.

Just like the weather, our emotional states have highs and lows.  When we experience anger, frustration, confusion, or embarrassment, feelings manifest through our behaviors.  Kids lash out initially. (I hate you.)  But once the dust settles, remorse and embarrassment usually kick in bringing out more desired behaviors. (I love you.)

Of course the younger a person is, the less experience he or she has riding this emotional roller coaster in a healthy way, so both positive and negative behaviors are amplified.  Add in strong-willed personality types and inevitable teenage hormones and … you get the idea.

When individuals snap, remember that to some degree they are being hijacked by their emotional states – and usually it is the people they are closest to who experience the raw unedited version of their feelings.  This doesn’t excuse their behaviors, but it should help you take things less personally.  Just because your kids don’t always like you, doesn’t mean they don’t love you.  

Happy Valentine’s Day.