Wednesday, November 30, 2005
I'm taking a firmer stance in my parenting lately. I don't like the middos I'm seeing in my children (namely, chutzpah and ungratefulness).
Someone recommended I look into John Rosemond, a "traditional parenting" advocate. I found him on the web and I liked what he had to say, especially his "Parents Bill of Rights." I sensed he was in favor of hitting though, and I am not. I think if I adopt his approach (minus the hitting) I can remedy what I'm seeing.
Here's an example: this morning I gave Rivky a cheese stick, and I had the temerity to open it. Well, that set off a major screaming fit. I took the cheese stick away, and sent her to her room. I told her when she was calm, she could come out and have it. She calmed down and came out, and I gave it back. Then she started ranting and raving how I ruined the cheese stick, she wanted another one, blah blah. So I took it away for good. Not satisfied? The cheese stick is no good for you? Bye-bye. The nicer Mommy Maven would have probably said, "I don't like the way you're talking to me," or, "I see how disappointed you are," or worse (!!!), I would have given her a different one. No more. I'm tired of my ungrateful children. You don't like it? Tough noogies.
Chaya also thinks she can pull fast ones on me. This morning she was whining on and on how she doesn't like the morning schedule. I pointed at her and said "This is the schedule, that's it." She had the nerve to grab my finger and sass me! So I took the toy she was holding and put it away. I said "If you're not going to listen and co-operate, you don't get to have the things you want." Normally I would have said, "I don't like the way you're speaking," or "I'm sorry you find mornings so difficult."
Because of our cash flow increase I've been able to send the girls to dance classes. Last week when I picked them up, Chaya told me she didn't like it. You don't like it? Next week we won't go. She changed her mind. She likes it. Next time I won't be so nice, I'll just cancel the next class. I mean, the NERVE! You send a child to a dance class and she tells you she doesn't like it? I mean, I'm not saying she can't have legitimate issues with something, but this wasn't the case here.
Srulik is also getting his share. He's a little more than 2, and he thinks it's okay to hit me. What's the usual response? "Hands are not for hitting," or, "Chassidim use gentle hands." Now I stick him in his room for a minute or two.
I'm tired of feeling like I give and give and give, only to be a door mat. I want them to keep a tidy room, to clear their plates at the table, to be mentschen.
Someone responded to my last post that s/he went to a shiur and learned that sometimes gevurah (strictness/strength) is better than chesed (kindness). I think that's where I'm at right now. It's hard for me, I feel like I'm being witchy. But like another commenter said, "This too shall pass."