Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Calling Their Bluff

Before I had children and knew everything there was to know about parenting, I was always frustrated by the parents who would say, "Bobby, if you do that one more time. . ." and of course Bobby does it one more time and little, if anything, happens.

I have been guilty of that a lot lately. I have three kids at home all day. They wear me down, and I have decided to choose my battles carefully.

Today we were set to go play with Eddie at the park. The girls were very excited, but very irritable. Molly has not been sleeping well lately, waking up earlier and earlier (today it was 5:30 am) and though I try to keep her quiet, she always wakes up Emma who wakes up Macey. No one is getting the sleep they need (especially Mama!) and it's a difficult morning.

After breaking out into three large fits, I told Macey that if she cried one more time that morning, there would be no park date with Eddie. She cried, something about too much milk in her Fruit Loops, and so I told her there was no park date.

It's a tough decision to follow through on! I need the time out and the socialization as much as they do some days, and I felt bad indirectly punishing Emma for Macey's actions. But, I am hoping that installing stricter discipline with real consequences will pay off later!


The GruCru said...

Consistancy-my biggest problem.

Meg said...

Maybe it's the therapist in me, but high five sista! That is one of the biggest mistakes parents make...empty threats! Kids are smart and they know how to get what they want and wear you down until you give in. Not that I've been a parent long enough to know (3 months), but as a therapist I feel like a pretty good expert & lack of consistancy is a not your friend!

Kiersten said...

Following through is one of the toughest things to do sometimes!

On The Go Family said...

It is hard to follow through. Way to go for picking a consequence and sticking with it.

I'll never forget a road trip where Matt threatened to turn off the DVD if some irritating action from the kids did not stop. Sure enough, it continued, and then ALL OF US were miserable once the movie was turned off. There was much weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth (mine included). Since then, we've done a better job of picking consequences.

LeeAnn said...

"Parenting with Love and Logic" great book which helps parents choose wisely the consequences THEY can live with! Also be sure to award the other kids who unfortunately reep the un-benefits
of a siblings actions. Ice cream is always a bonus!

Tina said...

Good for you! But sorry for Eddie!