Discipline Dilemmas

Very often, editing child development texts (as I do) and raising children do not mix well. For instance, when trying to get pregnant with Declan I kept having to work on material on fertility and conception including statistics on infertility, failure to implant, chromosomal abnormalities, etc. Then, when newly pregnant with him, I kept having to work on material dealing with fetal development including the statistics on miscarriage, tables listing teratogens and their consequences, and trauma during birth. Fun stuff, right?

Lately, I have been really struggling with Brady. He wants to be in charge OF EVERYTHING and that makes life pretty difficult. The child has a prepared argument for why he cannot do anything I could possibly ask him to do. Lately he likes to say “Sorry, we’re doing it my way. Sorry, that’s not going to happen. Sorry, I am not doing that.” And it makes…me…crazy!! It is so rude and insolent and just maddening. It makes me feel like I have no control over anything and of course this is why he does it himself. He wants control. While I get it and I empathize, it still makes life hard. He is facing a huge change in his life. Preschool ends in just ten days and then he faces the uncertainty of summer and the looming inevitability of kindergarten. It’s tough. But we have to find some balance.

So of course at this tough time I’m working on early childhood and discipline and learning all about how I can turn my willful child into a juvenile delinquent or an unsuccessful, unhappy adult with the wrong response to his rants and tantrums and arguments. Plus, Declan is getting his top teeth and not sleeping well, so I’m not sleeping well and that makes everything that much worse. For the most part I’m trying to use logical consequences and be consistent, but it is so hard! Especially when I’m so exhausted that what I really want to do is flip on the television to cartoons and just lie on the couch. I must stay strong and work through it, we don’t need any juvenile delinquents in this house…

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4 responses

  1. I loved this post! It made me laugh and feel sorry for you all at the same time! I totally relate to the reading about all the wrong things at the wrong time in your life… that’s what made me laugh, not the need for control or teething issues. I hope you’re getting more sleep now 🙂

  2. When we picked Brady’s name, the only meanings we could find were “broad meadow” and “son of Bradach”. But after he was born I found one book that listed the meaning as “spirited”. I think that book got it right. And thank God for making them so darn cute!

  3. Brooke, I can’t believe someone living in Papau New Guinea posted a comment on my blog! So very cool! Today I’m working on theories of early childhood psychosocial development and read a quote from John Watson saying that the happiness of a childhood “fall squarely upon the parents’ shoulders” and parents have determined whether or not a child will be happy and well adjusted by the time he or she is 3. Well I say “shove it John Watson!” Of course this is the man who conditioned a baby to fear all furry, white animals so I’m not so sure following his advice is recommended.

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