I have a friend that has a blog called "I had a dream about sleep". The other day I was reading one of her posts about her kids doing the one thing that can get under any parent's skin quicker than anything: siblings fighting, whining, not getting along, and the big one tattling. In a stroke of genius with a simultaneous nod to letting the punishment fit the crime, she hideously made her kids hug. That's right HUG for two straight minutes. Timed and everything. By the end the animosity had turned into giggles and all was right with the world again. I thought, wait a second, I wanted to try this!
Suddenly I wanted my kids to squabble (wait, what did I just say?? Okay, well there is always a first for everything, right?). I was wishing for a spat, a "she's touching me", or even a good old fashioned "she won't share with me" moment. I mean, look at these three little angles. They don't look like the type to go a couple rounds with each other, correct?
You'd be wrong. Dead wrong. Well, Okay, 93% of the time I could say they get along fine (for the most part), but a mandatory timed hug was just around the corner, I could just FEEL it. Finally this afternoon, it happened. Nothing too dramatic but the two older ones were excluding the youngest and making her feel bad. I DESPISE girl drama of any kind. In the real world or in my house. We will not have two against one. We are all sisters, best friends, and we love each other. No one is left out. I called them all down and explained the situation. We were going to have a group hug and it was going to be one minute long. Hubby was only too excited to help out and hurried over to the kitchen clock to help time the festivities.
They looked at us with perplexed faces at first, but then they scooted towards each other to prepare for the required hug. At the call of "start" we were off. There were some squeezes, then some smiles were cracked. There were a few off balanced moments where the whole group might of tipped over, and a few moments where the littlest one needed a little less hugging and more air (since she was shorter and the hugs were going more around her neck). Soon there was full-on giggles, laughing and big smiles on all the faces. By the time the buzzer sounded they broke apart with a "yeah" and ran upstairs laughing and talking about what they were going to play next - the earlier altercation completely forgotten.
What?? That was pretty awesome. I had to let Jeanne (blog writer) know that the timed hug worked like a charm! Just thought I'd pass it along, just in case there are other people in your life that need forced hugs. I can attest so far, it works great!!