In the past few weeks, I’ve noticed that Jazmine has been shying away from her father, my husband. When Brian asked if Jazmine wanted to go out to eat lunch with him, she first whispered to me and asked if I would go to. Jazmine got a new bike a few days ago. My husband took her out to ride her bike the very next day. After riding for just a few minutes, she said didn’t want Daddy to teach her how to ride her bike. She she wanted Mommy to teach her. My husband has come into the house from working and went to give Jazmine a kiss and she has refused his affections. Yesterday, she requested that her father not take her to a birthday party, a party which I fought hard for him to go with us in the first place. That was the last straw. Something had to be done. Something had to be said.
I thought it was just Jazmine being mean so I sought to correct it.
I pulled her aside and reprimanded her for speaking to her father like that. I told her that Daddy works hard to provide for her and that he loves her. I reminded her that she enjoys all the outings her and Daddy go on and that it is not right to be unkind to anyone who has shown her kindness, including her father.
She soon saw it my way and told her father that he “could go” with us. My husband did not want her forced to show him affection but I couldn’t stand by and watch this behavior continue. It upset me to see.
As we were driving to the birthday party, I called and spoke to my friend about Jazmine’s behavior towards her father. (We had to drive two separate cars to the party). In speaking with my friend, I felt the nudging of the Holy Spirit’s conviction of my part in Jazmine’s behavior.
I saw play before my mind’s eye, the many times I’ve disciplined Jazmine by not allowing her to play with her father. Let me explain the circumstances so you get a better picture. My husband has rehearsal one or two evenings a week. On those days, her time with her father is limited. Often, my husband would tell Jazmine that when he returns, he will play one of her board games with her. They both look forward to it. I would condition that plan to play with a caveat that she had to behave while I got her ready for bed. No whining or talking back. She inevitably did do one or both of those things and I would tell her she couldn’t play a game with her father. That was my error. I could have, I should have taken away something else, anything else, but not her time with her father.
It’s in those moments that bonds are forged and I disrupted them. I was unknowingly driving a wedge between my husband and my daughter.
I won’t speak to Jazmine the way I did yesterday. That is not the way to correct her response to her father. I have to change my ways to see a change in hers. I’ll do just that.