It's hard to blame a kid when he or she pushes your buttons. Kids believe the world revolves around them. They see you as their order taker at a fast food drive-thru and their one and only goal is to get what they want. My wife and I made an agreement we would stick together on everything so our children would not be able to divide and conquer. It helped us keep our sanity. What happens when champion button pushers become adults and they never learn to stop their childish manipulations? You have two choices:
- Push back. This choice isn't smart in a work environment. It increases tension and shows you are no more grown up than the button pusher. Resist the urge to do this.
- Stay out of the black hole. Your antagonist has one goal – to draw you in. Like a black hole, once you get sucked in, there's no way out. You lose. Establish boundaries. Recognize the patterns. Don't let the button pusher get the upper hand. Keep your cool. Minimize the drama. Walk away.