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Distraction, persuasion will turn your child’s grief over a lost pet into joy for a new one


So, I am one of those dads that put will put his foot down, lay down the law.

(You know, King-of-the-Castle type of vibe.)

This was on full display before Christmas when I declared there would be NO guinea pigs in my home — none I say!

Long story short, let’s just say Santa had other plans — times two. I guess he’s wearing the pants in my family. I was trumped by the jolly ol’ elf.

On Monday, I received a call from my distraught daughter informing me that her guinea pig had died.

My dilemma was how to handle my crying daughter when, truth be told, my first thought was, “Sweet, one down, one to go!”

I know what you’re thinking, but no, I didn’t kill the thing. I guess this happens all the time; The thing even came with a 30-day warranty from the pet store!

Anyways, back to my dilemma: Do I suck it up a purchase a new guinea pig or do I talk it out with my daughter?

If you guessed talk it out, give yourself a pat on the back.

These are the times when we go all Jedi as a parent, and this time, I strategically brought up a few favorite quotes from Pixar’s “Finding Nemo:” “These aren’t the pets you are looking for…”

Why did I do that, you may ask? So I could quickly transition from the death of the guinea pig to the thought of a little aquarium in her bedroom full of Nemos and Dories!

While she loved the thought, she also wanted to know where she would get the dough to pull that off. We thought for a few minutes and she came up with getting some fish instead of replacing the once-beloved guinea pig.

You see, these are the powers we need to tap into as parents, and soon, we will out-power that jolly ol’ elf!

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