November 12, 2009

Disciplinarian I am Not.

If I haven't mentioned it thousands of times already, parenting is hard.
It is friggin hard.
If I knew how hard it was going to be, I probably would have just become the crazy dog lady or something.
But I wanted little babies to love and cuddle and kiss and smell.
Who knew that they would grow up and require more than the boob and a soother.


I am learning that as my children get older, the discipline needed is much more sophisticated and complex.

A simple, stern "No" just ain't cutting it anymore.
Time outs get laughed at.
Yelling gets laughed at.
Sending them to their bedroom means more time to play without interruptions.
And no snack means nothing because they snack all day anyways.


When I had a paying career, I "specialized" in behaviour. We had specific programs that explained how to deal with tantrums. We had specialists come in and show us what needed to be done to decrease the frequency of a particular behaviour.

And it usually worked.

My children do not fit anything I ever did in my paying job.

My children are unique.


They think out of the box.

And know how to push Mom's buttons.

My creativity is drained because I am just trying to get through the day without downing a bottle of vodka. I am trying to survive the next few hours before I pass out from exhaustion.

Thinking about ways to extinguish inappropriate behaviours is not up there on my list of "Fun Things to Do". Especially when I am cleaning the kitchen for the twelfth time of the day and keeping an 18 month old off of the book shelf.

{how do you like my big words? Pretty swell huh?}

I have tried the calm "discussions" with my children explaining what they did and have come up with ways to prevent it from happening again. Didn't work.

I have ignored "bad" behaviour hoping that not getting any attention for it would stop them from ever doing it again. Didn't work.

I have taken away privileges. Didn't work.

I have let them know when I like their behaviour hoping that attention for the good behaviour would make them want to continue being good. Didn't work.

I have yelled. Alot. Doesn't work.

I have played with them non-stop hoping that alot of attention would keep them from misbehaving. Nope.

I have given them stickers. They don't care about damn stickers.

Have I mentioned I have yelled?

The most creative I have gotten is pulling out a piece of paper and a pencil and had them write lines. They let me know how stupid it was and that it wouldn't keep them from being bad.

I have also had them write a letter to their teacher for being rude while I was on the phone with her. I found out they threw it out and she never got it.
So, I guess what I am saying, is that I am not overly creative and have children who get a big thrill out of misbehaving.

Tell me what worked for you because I am ready to break out the vodka. And rum. And mouthwash.

Click here to see more completed assignments. It is always tons of fun!

post signature


WackyMummy said...

I wish I could tell you, but I can't. I don't have any answers. The pat answers I used to give my clients don't work with my son. But the occasional yelling does work. However, he's great at the guilt trips after, so I try really hard not to yell too much. ( "Mom, aren't you sorry for being so mean to me?" ) He slays me. I figure as long as he's not killing himself or anyone else with his activities, I might let it slide. Maybe. I save the yelling for dangerous stuff. Sorry I'm of no help. ;)

Heatherlyn said...

Disciplining kids is the hardest part of being a parent. I think I would be the last person to want to judge another parent. Having kids makes us TIRED. :) My kids, thankfully, are pretty easy ... so far. But they still require lots of attention. And that makes me tired.

I do think that sometimes as parents we also wear ourselves out trying to do everything for our kids.

I've watched two of my SILs. One of them did everything for her kids. They were bratty, self-centered, unpleasant children into adulthood. They complained about having to wash the dishes or do anything. They begged and begged even when she said no. The adult children continue to be very self cetnered.

The other SIL made her kids do everything. I thought "how mean". They had to work to buy their own things, clean up, take care of themslevs. Oh, I thought she was NOT a very good mother. But what do you know, her children are happy, helpful, and the three of them that are now adults are paying their own way through college. They love and respect their parents.

Maybe there is something to that ... (but do you know how much energy it takes to teach kids how to clean up and take care of themselves??? It's a full-time job!!)

Elaine A. said...

This is my future, isn't it? yeah, so figure it out so I can come to YOU for advice someday, K?


Seriously, I hear you on the discipline. It's getting harder over here too...

parentingBYdummies said...

I go with the send them to the room thing. Once they are outta earshot I don't care what they do!

Foursons said...

Oh girly, I wish I had an answer for you. Maybe stop helping them once they ask for it? Something along the lines of , I'm sorry I can't do that for you because you didn't clean up the toys when I asked you to. Maybe?

Mama Kat said...

I'm right there with you.

I'm a professional childcare provider...spent years clicking my tongue about how parents should be raising their children.

And then I had some.

No more tongue clicking for me!