Naw Day Poe was at her wit’s end. Her daughter cried all day long, from early in the morning until late into the night. Her husband was in the hospital, in the final stages of cancer, and she was home alone caring for their two children all by herself.
She had no idea what to do about the crying. “She was so naughty, even my neighbors sympathized with me. I was so tired and overwhelmed. Once I tried taking her to an astrologist to find out what was wrong with her. No matter how much I shouted at her and scolded her, she still cried all the time.”
“Sometimes I would get so impatient with my children’s behavior that I threatened to tie their hands together and throw them into the creek!”
Like most migrant parents here on the Thai/Burma border, Naw Day Poe didn’t go to school for very long before she started working. She only finished 4th grade. She migrated to Thailand many years ago because there was no way to earn money in her village in Burma. But in Mae Sot, Thailand, it was easy for her to get a job. But once she had children, she had no idea how to parent them. She had never seen a good example of loving parents before. She just did what she had seen in her village growing up.
But parents like Naw Day Poe are learning a better way, and you can help. Our Family Education Program equips parents with basic tools and skills that help them to meet their children’s basic needs and show them love in healthy ways that help them grow up to be strong and healthy adults. They are learning to control themselves and problem solve, instead of reacting in anger to everything their children do.
“After I took the Early Childhood Development training, I became much better at controlling myself. I learned that I shouldn’t threaten my children the way I had been, and I learned how to calm myself down.”
“I had never before thought to ask what unmet need in my children might be making it hard for them to behave well. Now I try to find the root of the problem. I try to meet their needs instead of getting angry at them for how they act. I have to be very patient now and control myself. It’s better for them.”
I’ve learned to establish a routine in our house to help my children know what to do, and what to expect. Now they know that once they wash the dishes, we will have a snack together or I will cook for them.”
“Sometimes my daughter still has trouble sleeping. But instead of getting angry I take her outside for a little walk in the cool evening air so she can calm down before trying to put her to sleep again. I do what I can to help her, and it is much better.”
Thank you for your generosity in helping parents like Naw Day Poe give their children the warm happy childhood that helps them grow into strong and resilient adults.
Carrien is co-founder of The Charis Project, Family Education Curriculum Developer, and mom of 6.
You can get her free mini-course on Making Your Family More Resilient here.