Today, from the moment he got home from school, Big Kid was whining and bitching about everything little kid did or touched.
It didn't take long of the constant tattling for me to completely lose my patience with it:
Big Kid: Mudder! Mudder! He weft a cwacker on da back porch. I just founded dis cwacker out dere.
Ashley: You know what? That's it. little kid, come here. I'm putting his shoes on him, driving him to the zoo, taking the boat out to monkey island and leaving him there. I just can't take it anymore, every little second hearing you tell me what things he is doing wrong.
Big Kid: (instantly getting pale and eyes filling with tears) You're gonna take him to da zoo and weave him? By himself?
Ashley: Yes, you think I should, don't you? You're the one that keeps telling me every single thing he does wrong. It's always something, all day long, little kid is doing this, little kid is doing that. I just can't deal with it anymore, maybe the monkeys will take better care of him.
Big Kid: (starting to cry) Mama, no. No, don't do dis to wittle kid. He is dest a baby. He cannot wiv wif da monkeys, mama, he cannot. (full on crying)
Ashley: Do you love him?
Big Kid: (nodding tearfully) Yes, I do.
Ashley: Then get off his case, okay? I love him too. He's not going anywhere. He is a naughty little baby though and he gets into things all day long. Unless it is something that could hurt him or hurt you or break something...I don't want to hear it. I don't want to hear if he gave Heidi Louise a cracker, I don't want to hear if he opened the junk drawer, I don't want to have to hear if he brings the food processor into the family room again. I usually see it. I'm choosing my battles. I appreciate when you tell me when he's standing on chairs or has a knife or is covered in food coloring, but otherwise I don't need to know every little thing. Okay?
Big Kid: So you're not gonna weave him anywhere, wight?
Ashley: No, of course not. I love him.
Big Kid: I wuv him too. He is my bery bestest bubba in da whole world.
Sweet, huh? Wouldn't you know I had to use the same threat again later that night? Instant tears again too. Yeah, I know, totally mean of me. Some of you may recognize this new parenting tactic as being inspired by the time I threatened to put little kid in his parrot costume and leave him at the parrot cage and got a similar response. I'm shocked that this gets such a reaction, but I'll be keeping it in my back pocket for sure.
I'm not above threats, lies and scary stories to get a little peace and quiet around here.
Hey-sometimes you gotta' do what you gotta' do!
Thanks for the honesty. I feel better knowing that there are other mothers out there like me...
And those that say it's bad only wish that had the courage to do so as well.... Most of the time it's the only way to get the point across. It's classic parenting and it works.
OMG, it's not just my kids! Can I use the "leave your sibling in the zoo with the monkeys" bit? My ignoring them altogether doesn't seem to be working....
BTW, love your troll. How'd you get so close to snap that pic of them in their lair? Do you have She-ra powers?
I'm totally going to use the zoo thing when my kids are driving me b-a-n-a-n-a-s. I'm voting for you daily! :)
Ahh, the memories. My mother used distinctly similar tactics in dealing with us as littles. She even brought us to the animal park with my brother's stuff packed. It worked.
For an hour.
When my daughter says she doesn't love me and wants me to leave her alone forever, I say, "Fine, if that's your wish," and I walk away and ignore her until she apologizes. She always does. She would rather have her loving mom than be ignored. She's only 3, but she needs to learn who's in charge. Harsh? Maybe... but very effective. My mom did the same to me and I am a highly functioning adult. And a happy one at that. Go figure.
I am absolutely saving this tactic for the day when my son has a younger sibling. He's crying right at the moment, so that day coming is questionable at the moment.
LOL your blog is seriously one of the funniest I've read! I voted for you! You are extremely entertaining on the bargain board! Keep up the good work!
HAHAHA! i love it!
I think you are brilliant. I may have to steal your taking the baby to live at the zoo idea with my 4 year old!
Little A is licking things lately. When I say "things", I pretty much mean everything.
And so beyond the worry and the google searches that take me to pages I'm going to need therapy to get over, I've found a temporary cure for her.
I've told her that she shouldn't lick the walls because there is poop on them. Sometimes, I didn't even use the word poop. Sometimes, I used the word poops big sister.
And I didn't even feel guilty. Not for one second, even when she was bawling and wiping her tongue with a towel, trying to get the "shit off".
I discovered you VIA bloggies. You're my choice. I voted for you and added you to my bloglines.
that is AWESOME! I am totally going to use that when I have kids. Hilarious.
This dialogue is precious! I would try it with mine, only she'd say, "Sure, leave him."
That's great! If my big kid was a little younger and more naive, I'd use it.
I told Celia that Santa will only bring her a stocking full of tissues (ie, no good toys) if she kept picking her nose like that. Girl had a serious problem. Not only did she stop picking her nose, she also told all of Target that Santa is bringing daddy tissues for Christmas.
I LOVE your blog and voted. Wish we could vote 912 times! Maybe we should all set up 12 email addresses and cast some more votes.
As for the tattle tale situation--I have a trick that worked. I used to teach kindergarten would rather eat glass than hear one more tattle. For the frequent offenders, I would attempt to convince the child that he/she had a tail. The more tattles he/she told, the longer the tail would grow. Having a few teacher friends in on it would help. Just a suggestion
A major fan in NYC.
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