Erin Napier, one of the stars of HGTV's Home Town, often uses her Instagram to share her day-to-day life as a parent. She and her husband Ben Napier (who also appears on Home Town) are parents to 3-year-old daughter Helen. While they have years of parenting under their belts at this point, they're still learning new things every day. A case and point of this fact is a recent revelation Napier had while on a family trip this past week.
In an Instagram post uploaded on Sunday, Napier shared a scenic snap of Helen riding a tricycle into the sunset. Along with the image, Napier opened up about how she realized that, while she kept Helen's behavior in line, she often did not explain herself enough when disciplining the toddler. The 35-year-old home renovator said her "breakthrough" moment came when she realized that explaining her reasoning behind her disciplinary actions to Helen worked wonders to defuse a situation and teach the tot right from wrong.
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"After a long and honestly difficult trip to Florida (time changes with a tired toddler! spring break crowds!) I began to realize the most important toddler parenting I can do is so simple but not actually intuitive and I feel like I should share it in case it's useful for someone else," Napier wrote. "I've always defaulted to quickly stopping her when she's doing something wrong, saying 'no ma'am, that's not nice!' ... and that was it. I left her hanging without giving her feedback on WHY or how to FIX IT. She gets jealous of her baby cousin who was crawling across her floor palette 'messing up my blankets!!!' — it's not enough to tell her to stop being mean, I told her 'Helen, she might want to snuggle with you! Don't be mean to Lottie, give her a hug and see if she wants to share it with you!' ... and she smiled and reached out for a hug and said 'come here little baby girl!'
"Breakthrough. Every correction must come with a lesson. Imagine if your boss told you 'No! I don't like how you're doing this!' without any other feedback. I think we take for granted that social cues came naturally and we just knew what to say and do, but we didn't. Thanks, mama, for teaching me before I could remember it!"
Home Town airs Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on HGTV, which can be watched via cable providers and live streaming services like FuboTV, which is currently offering a free trial. Viewers can also watch new episodes on discovery+, and Season 1 of Home Town is currently streaming on Hulu.