Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Parenting Fail

Tonight has not been my most stellar night in parenting. The weather has been crazy all day, I had to run a few errands, the weather caused a change in lunch plans. When I picked my kiddos up from school they were excited and happy. They had a severe weather drill at school today, sat in the hall reading books and even had the power go out on them twice.

After we got home I swept all the corners of the living room and dining room. There was quite a substantial pile of toys, clothes and school papers along with the dog hair that tends to pile up. I almost feel like we should be on hoarders but I would be too embarrassed to let their cameras in my house. The Flylady would say we have CHAOS (Can't have anyone over syndrome). I told my sweet children to pick up their things out of the pile and put them away. This is something that should not have taken more than 10 minutes to complete. An hour of whining and complaining later I calmly went to the kitchen and got a trash bag. I took it to the living room and started picking up toys. I have never seen my children move that fast. I thought that would be the end of the ridiculous disobeying. How wrong I was...

Munchkin and Little Man managed to get the items into a basket to take up to the playroom. But then came the whining about how legs hurt and hands hurt and "I just can't carry that up the stairs!" and "It's not fair that we have to pick all of this up!" Another threat was issued. "If that basket is not upstairs but the time your daddy gets home you are not going to girl scouts tonight!" It wasn't done so we didn't go. At least I followed through, right? I put my babies to bed tonight at 7pm. Normally they don't go to bed until 8:30. I just couldn't take any more. We did say prayers before bed and we talked about why they were being punished by having to go to bed early and not going to girl scouts. Both kids actually obeyed and went to sleep right away.

I hate having to discipline my children but I know they will better for it. I tell them when we talk that I want them to grow up to be compassionate, kind, loving people and sometimes I feel like they do not hear a word coming out of my mouth.
Ugh, I am praying for a better day tomorrow.


  1. Karen-- you are a wonderful mommy!!! And you did the right thing. I think your consequences and follow through was great. I always ask my husband- Who knew parenting would be so difficult. I think many times it takes more courage and work to apply consequences and follow through-- making the effort to do that is one of the reasons you are a good parent, friend. You care about your two kiddos very much and the kind of people they will grow to be. Now that's one good momma!!

  2. NOT a parenting fail. At all. I remind Matt all the time that they are kids (and humans) they are going to sin, they are going to disobey. It's not really an option. We just have to stand strong, discipline, and love 'em through it. Then be ready to forgive ourselves in the quiet after it's all over! You are a great mama! (and the weather, not to mention the off-schedule, always cause problems with my kids' behavior)

  3. Definitely NOT a fail! Establishing healthy boundaries, respect, responsibility, obedience and consequences is a daily battle but has to be done. Your kids are better for it! I hate having to follow through, too, and I have to make sure I don't threaten ridiculous extreme consequences that I can't actually use (Like: If you don't eat dinner I'll never give you food again!!!, If you push your brother one more time you are going to spend the rest of the day on the front porch!, If you have another accident You will spend the rest of your life in diapers!!) I tend to overreact. :)
    btw, those are not actually consequences I have threatened. :)

  4. Anonymous4:42 PM

    So not a fail! You did all the right things, followed through with totally natural consequences, and put those kiddos to bed early when they obviously needed it.

    Another thing--As a school staff member who spent most of that day in "Code Gray" mode (tornado drill in cramped cubbies with increasingly wild students), I'll also say that probably set you up for failure before they even got home. No one can handle that for long! :)