Mark Dewsnup is a Health Specialist for the Head Start program in the District, and uses Love and Logic principles in his home. He has three sons, and he believes that "kids are dealing with issues sooner than [they were] just a few years ago. Like being asked to taste alcohol, or hearing bad language, or facing morality issues.
"You can't always be there as a parent to protect your child. When I send my sons out into the world they know how to take care of themselves and I'm not as worried. It [Love and Logic] has kind of set my mind at ease."
Karen Borg is the mother of four. She, too, is a Love and Logic parent. She's learned that in her interaction with her children, "I can't manipulate[them] into thinking or feeling or acting in any way. I can only control my response."
Borg believes that "our family relationships were intended to be peaceful and productive---a place where people can grow and be safe. Yet sometimes they're fraught with frustrationÖLove and Logic is a mutually respectful way to communicate expectations for both the parent and the child."
Each of these experienced Love and Logic parents will be teaching the Parenting with Love and Logic classes through the school district this January. Each has had years of experience using the principles in his/her own home as well as in relationships of all kinds.
One Love and Logic parent applied the principles with her difficult and controlling older relative. She found she could use a positive tone and "enforceable statements" to let the relative know the kind of conditions under which she would visit. This parent has noticed that other family members who don't use Love and Logic still "get pushed around a lot" or even stay away.
Borg, who works with placing special needs children in the school district, uses Love and Logic principles with the children she evaluates, with their parents and with her colleagues, in addition to her own family.
Love and Logic teaches one to take good care of oneself in a healthy way; to give children choices, each of which the parent would be happy with; it teaches letting the child experience the consequences of those choices, the parent empathizing with any unpleasant consequences.
According to Love and Logic, it's important to let children make mistakes and suffer consequences while the price is still a small one, and they can learn from the mistake. And learning always takes place from the consequence itself, rather than from an angry parent!
Those who have practiced it for years say that the ideas taught are adaptable to each family, to each person, to a variety of settings and of circumstances. "It teaches principles which you can then adapt and implement," said Dewsnup. "You don't have to change to meet its criteria; you [adapt] it to meet your criteria."
Penrod has found that "Love and Logic is a way for parents to help their children get ready for the real world." In that adult world, natural and logical consequences follow decisions, and Love and Logic mimics that. She has found that using these ideas helps her to be on her children's team, helping them to own and solve their own problems. She enjoys being the "good guy" and letting consequences teach, instead of being a "drill sergeant."
Penrod, Dewsnup, and Borg, as well as other experienced teachers, will teach Parenting with Love and Logic classes starting in January. They will be taught for a six-week period on Tuesday nights, starting Jan. 15, at Lakeside, West Point and Lincoln Elementaries, and on Thursdays, beginning Jan. 17, at Heritage Elementary. All classes are held from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. The cost is $12 per person and a handbook is included.
Love and Logic CDs are also available to borrow at the PIRC in Kaysville. Call 402-0670 for more information.