Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Let's Not Call CPS, Ok?

I debated about telling you this, because if you read it the wrong way, it sounds so wrong... But it really was a teaching moment, and I was calm the entire time, and the punchline is great, so without further preamble......

Mary Grace has been choking Claire. Claire's little neck is right at the perfect height for her to do it, and it has been happening a lot lately, in spite of the timeouts, and the taking away of toys, and everything else.

This morning she did it to her again. Claire was crying on her Daddy's shoulder, and I got down on MG's level and said, "I don't think you understand how scary it feels when you do that to Claire. I'm going to show you, so that you understand why I don't want you to ever do it again." Remember, I was totally calm. Well, a little ticked off, but it wasn't like I lost my temper and then choked her to hurt her. I was trying to teach her.


So I gently put my hands on MG's neck and applied enough pressure that she reflexively pushed my hands away. "See?" I said, "That feels really scary. I don't ever want you do to it to Claire again. If you do, I will take away a princess for the rest of the day. Do you understand?"

"Yes, Mommy," she said, then went in her room to cry.

She was crying, mind you, because she was angry and frustrated. She was NOT crying because she was hurt.

A few minutes passed... "MOMMY!" she yelled, in a very parental voice, "Don't you ever put your hands on my neck again! If you do, I will take away your..." mind-wheels turned, "If you put your hands on my neck again, no more blogging!!"

Yep, she's got my number.

I can only hope that her ability to repeat my admonishment means that she learned from the experience.


Jen said...

You're brave, especially after checking out that link...

RobMonroe said...

Umm... Maybe you and I should start a "Not going to win parent-of-the-year-for-these-shinanigans site." I resolved to do better in 2009, but Abby has already had one chocolate-cake-is-my-lunch-thank-you meals, and it's only the 7th of January!

Jill said...

My blog post has nothing to do with what you're sharing here. Your actions were not in anger, they were to teach. Your words are succinct and you seem very smart. I'm surprised you took my meaning so out of context. Thanks for the link though.

Heather said...

Well, to Amy - I'm pretty sure that if your kid were traumatized, she wouldn't be threatening to take your blogging away. How's it feel to know that the parental curse is taking effect?

(You know the one: "Yeah, well, when you grow up and have kids, I hope they turn out Just Like You...")

And to Jill - I don't think Amy is taking your post out of context. If someone were to read HER post the wrong way, or if they were just that tense today, then even with all of Amy's disclaimers she could still have gotten a knock on her own door.

So much of human communication is lost when it comes onto the 'Net - there are no facial expressions, no tone of voice, and even in video chats where that exists, there is no direct person-to-person contact. It's so easy overreact, as your Twitter mom experienced, or to under-react, as did the witnesses to the various "internet suicides," who in essence responded as if they were watching a reality SHOW, and not REALITY.

Stacey @ said...

Thanks for posting about the realities of parenting! Some times you have to "get your hands dirty" when you're trying to get through to your kids. Now, behave yourself so you don't lose your blogging privileges!