Saturday, September 13, 2014


“If you don’t do this by the count of three, you’re in a time out.”

Have you caught yourself saying that at some point in time? Or any variation of that statement? That’s been a very common phrase in our house over the last little while. It’s been interesting as we’ve worked on how to communicate and get through to Tigger. I also saw a situation from a different vantage point the other day too.

For the longest time I have shared my belief that kids need to be held accountable, they need to be allowed to make mistakes so they can learn, and they need to have consequences both good and bad. I remember thinking how parents just needed to stick to their guns and follow through. Not too much to ask, right?

Well, here’s what happened at our house.

I was getting Bear ready to get in the car. I asked Tigger to go brush his teeth and we were going to head to an open gym session. After I had everything ready for Bear and he was in the carseat, Tigger comes around the corner. “Come see what I did.”

Not exactly sure what I was going to be walking into, I follow Tigger into the bathroom where he shows me his artwork all over the counter. He had used toothpaste. I look at him and ask him if he made a good choice or a bad choice because we’ve already had the conversation of not squeezing the toothpaste all over the counter before. He responded appropriately and then asked, “Do I still get to go to open gym?” All I could say was, “I’m not sure.”

I ended up calling Hubby to ask him what he thought the consequence should be. Deep down I knew what it would be, I just didn’t want to deal with the aftermath. Of course Hubby agreed and I got to tell Tigger that he would not get to go to open gym. What I didn’t expect was what his reaction would do to me.

Tigger immediately cried and wailed, “I want to go to open gym!” “But I really want to go!” It broke my heart to see how upset he was. He had looked forward to open gym for awhile and now we were within minutes of going and he lost the opportunity to go. He was heart broken. I wanted to wrap him in a hug and take him to open gym. I wanted to make him happy. I wanted to give in.

In the middle of the fit, I found myself debating inside. If I give in, he won’t learn the lesson and he’ll think he can get away with more things. If I give in the morning will go much smoother and he’ll stop crying. I want him to be happy, but I want him to learn, but . . . It was then I saw how and why parents give in and children get what they want even they probably shouldn’t.

At the end, we came to a compromise. Tigger agreed to no TV for the rest of the day and the next day in order to go to open gym. It worked well but I learned a very valuable lesson. One, don’t judge. :) Two, there’s most likely a compromise that can and will satisfy both ends. Three, stick to your guns.

Whoever said parenting was easy, lied. It’s hard, especially on no sleep and screaming children. Who am I kidding, it’s even hard without those parameters. But we do the best we can and learn as we go. I am very blessed to have three wonderful boys. Even though one is pushing buttons hard, another is on the otherside, and the third isn’t sleeping, I love them all and wouldn’t trade it for the world!

Side by side pictures next week . . . promise!

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