As some of you may know, Griffin has been having a really hard time with people that smoke. He just couldn’t seem to understand why someone would have that habit when they knew it was harmful to their health and to other people.
We tried everything from sharing that smoking is a habit, just like his cursing. We also shared that people he knows and loves have smoked at one time and that he knows people that still do smoke.
He was able to give love and understanding to the people he knew but walking past a smoker he didn’t know was a whole other thing. He would make a gagging gesture or whisper in my ear that they were idiots.
We tried positive re-enforcement. I told him to squeeze my hand or tell me he loves me when we saw a smoker. These suggestions worked for a minute but then he was back to reacting in a negative way.
One of our family mantras is “We’ll never stop trying.” Four of Griffin’s great-grandparents smoked. Even though he never met any of them I was inspired to tell him to think of smokers this way, “Griffin, what if every time you see a smoker it’s one of your great-grandparents saying “Hello” and reminding you to be kind?” Griffin loved the idea and now when we walk by a smoker he asks “Is that Grandpa Fernando? Is that Grandma Zonie? That’s Grandma Kay saying hello! Is that Papa Clem?”
It’s a wacky way to remember our grandparents but I know they’re in on it and are getting a big chuckle out of it.
We’ll Never Stop Trying and have angels helping us along the way 🙂