Today I got a great email from a close friend of mine. He has a 3 year old son named Thomas who somehow developed a very intense fear of the bath. He would literally freak out when it was bath time and the parents, my friends, were struggling to find a solution. It was stressing THEM out too, quite naturally.
The solution came to them in a stroke of genius. They told their son it was time to make “Thomas Soup”. The big soup bowl was the bathtub, and the vegetables that go in the soup were all of the play toys (rubber duck, etc).
Naturally you can’t make “Thomas Soup” without having Thomas in there, so he happily climbed in and enjoyed being the subject of the soup.
Notice that this is indeed another great example of a reframe. Instead of bath time being fearful for Thomas, for whatever reason … it’s now fun again. I doubt his fear will return because whatever was causing it will now have vanished. He’s not going to grow up thinking that bath time is kid-soup-making time, but on an unconscious level he’ll have a more happy association to taking a bath. And that’s all the parents were after.
I wrote about another reframing example in this post about my daughter’s underwear. Check it out if you’re interested in more stories. If you’re interested in learning language techniques to solve many of the most common toddler parenting problems, check out the free lesson I have for you.
Enjoy your children,