We’re in temporary housing, and our table is really a ledge that seats three. For some reason it has become a point of contention which seat has the most perceived value to our three children. As a solution, Lee decided that at each meal, one child could have the choice of where to sit. That has mostly taken care of the whining.
Mostly. This morning David realized that because we ate at a restaurant for dinner last night, he lost his opportunity to choose the seat. He thought he should be able to choose the breakfast seat (no matter that then Laurel would lose the ability to choose a seat instead of him). When I told him that he would simply have to wait until the next dinnertime, he burst into tears.
As I tried to help him work through his grief, I realized that from his perspective, he was simply disappointed, no different than losing a contest or having an outing rained out. But there was something more going on besides disappointment, I think. I want to think through this a little. How can I tell the difference biblically between bitterness and envy, and disappointment? Then, how do I teach him the difference? More later.
We dealt with a disappointment recently to, and it got me to thinking. I have no answers yet. . .
Normally, I see disappointments as part of life. I usually let them cry a bit, try to understand why they’re disappointed (by phrasing it “Are you disappointed because…”), and then encourage them to move on with life. But I see that perhaps I shouldn’t deal with all disappointments equally. Let me know if you have any good thoughts. I’ll keep you posted, too.