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My son is feeling tired and “a little grumpy,” he tells me. He goes to the couch to lie down and have some quiet time. When I ask him a question from the other room his response is mildly—but not completely—snappy.

I’m quick to comment: “Even though you are feeling grumpy, you still need to talk nicely to mommy and daddy.”

Clank. My heart drops with the weight of lead to the floor.

You see, I’m usually the grumpy one in our household. And I typically use my grumpy moods to justify snappy or impatient remarks, expecting my husband and children to understand. My son is almost always good-natured and easy-going. I see the irony. I see the double-standard. I see the benefit of heeding my own advice.

A bad mood does not justify treating others poorly.

Oh, the lessons I learn through teaching my children!

I’m grumpy often enough that I bought this children’s book, The Bad Mood by Moritz Petz; illustrated by Amelie Jackowski. I gave my husband and kids permission to pull it out as needed. It shows the effect our moods have on others and our relationships with them. Plus the illustrations are gorgeous.

How about you? What lessons have you learned through teaching your child(ren)? Do you have a favourite book that helps address bad moods? Have you ever caught yourself in a double-standard or a moment of irony with your kids? Your comments are welcome.

© Kelly Dycavinu, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Kelly Dycavinu with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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