I had a funny conversation with a few of the school gate mum’s last week; our girls always run from school to the car park together and despite our best efforts of ‘don’t run’, ‘wait there’, don’t go too far’ they always go hell for leather up the path. It seems we all speak Chinese to our kids and they cock a complete deaf one when told not to do something, especially in front of their friends.
We all laughed about this and agreed that over the last few days we’d all been using the ‘if you don’t stop doing that you’re not going to the party’ trick. However, in two of the 3 cases it had totally backfired as Roo and one other child had simply turned round and said ‘it’s ok I’m not that bothered anyway’; this had us in fits of laughter as we all agreed that even though we’d said that we wouldn’t take in them in reality taking away a party with their friends was never likely to happen in all reality.
And too all intents and purposes despite our best efforts really though, how many of us are really consistent in disciplining our kids?
I have to admit I am guilty of this; I will often say to Roo we’re not doing something or going somewhere if she’s naughty and then we still end up doing the activity because in reality the misdemeanour she’s being told off for is usually that meagre it doesn’t warrant withdrawing family time together and something fun. For us time out and a stern talking to works so much better and Roo knows that if she’s banished to her bedroom it’s because both Daddy E and I have reached our upper limits.
We have taken away favourite toys when she’s acted up and turned off television for a day or refused her treats with her tea but have never felt that strongly to withdraw an outing. Does this make us pushover parents? Are we just making a rod for our own backs for when Roo does do something that is so off the wall our attempt to discipline her will be met with blunt stubbornness?
So how disciplined are you with your kids and have you ever followed through on a ‘you’re not going to….’ statement?