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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I'm a Mean Mom!

The past few days have been rough parenting-wise.  Mainly with Alex.  He's starting to have meltdowns again.  Like a two-year-old.  Ugh!

Yesterday after Bible study I went back to the babysitting room to get him.  He had a play phone in his hand and insisted that it was his.  Well, I knew we didn't bring one with us.  And besides that, it was this yellow glittery thing and had Disney Princesses on it.  Yeah.  Don't think so.  But he kept insisting that he had found it and was going to take it home.

I told him it probably belonged to some little girl who was going to be quite upset when she couldn't find her play phone and that he needed to put it back.  But he persisted.  We fought back and forth for what seemed like 20 minutes, but was actually only a couple.  He was screaming at me and I was trying to reason with him.

One of the ladies from Bible study said quietly to me, "if it's just easier, take it and bring it back on Sunday."  Well, we don't attend church there and we won't be at Bible study next week, so it would actually be 2 weeks before we could return the phone.

Anyway, so I gave in.  I told him he could take it home to play with but we would have to bring it back the next time we are there.  That seemed to appease him.

But that got me to thinking ... I messed up there.  Or did I?  I think it should be less about what is easier and more about what is right.  It is not right to take something that doesn't belong to you.  Even if it is a stupid little broken play phone that no one will probably miss.  Wrong is wrong.  So, yeah, I think I messed up.

Then today Alex asked me if we could go to the mall [play area] after Preschool.  I told him that if he was extra special good at school and his teacher told me so, we would go.  I had to throw in that his teacher had to tell me because he tells me every day that he was super good, and several times that hasn't been the case.

So when I picked him up today he walked over to me telling me that he was extra special good.  His teacher heard the extra special good part and asked him what was extra special good.  He said, "ME!"  And she said that he was a bit loud today and was okay good but not extra special good.  

He asked me if we were going to the mall and I told him no because he didn't hold up his end of the deal.  His response ... MELTDOWN!  Right there in class in front of the few kids that were left and his teachers.

We left and he begged, pleaded, cajoled, threatened, and begged some more on the way down the stairs.  I kept telling him no, which would only make him angrier.  We got to the bottom of the stairs and I stopped walking.  He yelled at me to come on and I told him we were going to stand there until he was done with his bad behaviour.  His response ... another MELTDOWN!  He threw himself on the floor!

By now I'm practicing my deep-breathing techniques.  Counting to 10.  Anything to keep from flipping out.

We managed to get outside where he had another meltdown because he kept asking and I kept telling him no.  I finally told him I was done having this conversation, but he kept screaming at me.  "YOU'RE MEAN!  YOU'RE A MEAN MOM!"  I said, "Yes, I am" and kept right on walking to the car.

We went to the craft store to pick up something for Keira for a school project she's working on and he was perfectly fine.  Getting gas, again perfectly fine.

We got home and he was still perfectly fine.

Until just a little while ago when I told him he was taking a nap.  Yep, you guessed it ... 


Once again he reminded me how mean I am and he cried the whole way up to his bed.

He hasn't been taking naps too often lately, but I've noticed that around 4:00-5:00 pm, his grumpy meter goes way up.   So I thought I try naps again.

But it is only 3:00 and I am emotionally exhausted!  I know in my head that this will all be worth it some day, but today I just want to run away and never come back.  Or at least until he's 18.

God, give me strength!


Sheri said...

Aww I'm sorry, I know days like this are hard, but you're right, they are necessary and you won't regret it.

Tiffany said...

Sounds a bit like the day I'm having with my actual 2 year old. So sorry, I feel your pain!

kathryn said...

Oh, honey. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt.

Can I make a suggestion? I think your description of him being "extra-'specially-good" is too vague for a child. He need smaller, clear, laid-out goals that he can understand and follow. He probably also needs to be reminded that he's looking to hang in there to reach the golden carrot at the end. If he understands the behavior that's expected and he doesn't conform, then you can clearly tell him why he's not getting what he wanted...because he didn't do the specific thing you'd asked. But I think it has to be one thing at a time. Does that make sense?

And yeah...it's a PITA to stick to your guns, but you need to.

Hang in there, sweetie. YOU know you're a great mom!