Back when I was a teenager my mother laid a hex on me; that one day I shall have a daughter that would be JUST LIKE ME…. it worked, oh boy did it work. Taylor is now six years old and full of spunk. She would argue with a tree if it meant she would get to talk. It is never-ending, she argues her point even after she realizes that she has no point left.
Much of her behavior issues are my fault. I am horrible at consistency. The last year or so has been so busy for me, trying to get through the nursing program. I admit, there were times I let her win, instead of sticking to my guns when she was testing how far she could push me, I let her win. At the time I was doing what I thought was best. Some of the times it was because I felt guilty that I couldn’t do the things she wanted to do because I had to study or go to clinical so I wanted her to be happy. Other times I was just so overwhelmed with class, reading, finances, lack of sleep, cleaning, etc. that I just COULDN’T take another minute of being firm. I gave in.
None of those little decisions were major, it isn’t like I let her play in traffic or with weapons, but they had dire consequences. Now that she knows that I do actually have a breaking point she tries her best to hit it. Over.and.over.again. Nothing seems to phase her, time outs? Nope. spankings? Nope. Taking away toys? Nope. Unfortunately at one point I resorted to bribing- it worked, to a point- the point that she became like a coin operated monster!
The most recent thing that seems to be working is a ticket system, we even went and bought a roll of fair tickets. I still need to set up a cute little container for the tickets (now they are in a bowl!) But it seems to be working. I will be working on a post this week all about it and will share my worksheet for anyone that would like to try it. It is a combination of several pintrest pins I found that were similar to what I wanted. Basically she earns tickets through the day, some a set amount and some are ‘bonus’ tickets for good behavior (trying to reinforce the good more than punish the bad) and then there are consequences where she can loose tickets for certain actions. Then at certain intervals she can cash out tickets for various rewards (will also teach budgeting!). I am hopeful that if we can keep it going and grow it as she grows that we can make even more progress. I sure hope so!
Mommy guilt can have some serious consequences, in my case it was causing some major behavior issues in my little angel. I see myself in her every day, and I hear my mother’s voice come out of my mouth daily as well. I am constantly finding myself realizing just what my mother meant when she said things that when I had NO IDEA what she was talking about- “give an inch, take a mile?” Yeah, I totally get it now.
Have and advice for us? I would love to hear it. Has mommy guilt or mommy stress caused you to do parenting things you regret or would like to change? Is this fixable or have I broken my kid? lol