MG and I had a "discussion" last night. About rules. And the fact that I don't always enforce "The Rules".
Been having a "counselor" come over to the house once a week. She's supposed to help us create harmony as a family. Help me figure out how to get #1 out of his room more often. Help me understand why #2 and #3 freak out sometimes. Help me discover how to work as a "Team" with MG on parenting issues.
Don't get me wrong. I like this girl. Although she is half my age and I do kinda have issues with someone half my age telling me how to parent my children.
But she helped me clean the kids' rooms. NO ONE has EVER volunteered to do that! EVER. Even the KID's don't volunteer to help clean their rooms. And it was good.
But whenever she comes, MG and I have a disagreement.
And that's not fun.
Anyway, she wants me to re-write my "house rules". They have always been...
1) No running in the house. (you could get hurtchaknow!)
2) No jumping on the furniture. (Had to make this one up after the running one because once they discovered they couldn't run, they wanted to do SOMETHING for exercise and the couch looked like a great trampoline. Which of course it's NOT. I'm just saying...)
3) Inside voices (which was primarily to keep my ex from yelling at us to Shut UP! Which wasn't fun. He had a thing about loud noises...unless he was creating them to irritate other people.)
AND 4) Be kind to others. I thought up this one to BROADLY cover any torture, teasing or pilfering of siblings' persons or property.
OR the cat.
OR the goldfish.
OR the mother...
Anyway, Counselor Chick wants me to define the rules a little tighter now that the kids are older. And not give them 4 chances to behave. Because I had a "consequences" structure set up, too. But she didn't like that.
To tell you the truth, I've never had to use it beyond level two.
Cuz my kids are sweet like that. (cough, gag) And if the kid is doing the SAME naughty thing three times in a row? Well, basically that means they need some attention. Or redirection. Or at least a stern talking-to.
Blah, Blah, Blah...Janean's rules of parenting.
Anyway, we have a pool. And there are things we aren't allowed to do in the pool.
Yes, that includes pe*ing. :D
Like splashing others. Shoving, throwing the water ($$) out.
Last night they had a friend over. And they were getting a little wild. But no one was getting hurt. Everyone was having fun.
But it was driving MG up a tree! That I wasn't getting after them and kicking them out of the pool for breaking the rules.
"Why have rules anyway? "
Basically, what I heard was "You suck as a parent!"
To his credit, he was trying SO Hard not to say anything and just let me handle it. But the veins popping out in his forehead, sweat beads on his upper lip, the clenched jaw, the way he kept glancing out the window and rolling his eyes at me kinda gave him away.
So sue me. Sometimes I give my kids "breaks".
Yes, I have a strict NO GRAZING policy. Mainly to keep #1 from eating us out of house and home. We have breakfast, lunch, snack at 3 and dinner.
But SIN OF ALL SINS, sometimes I give them ice cream or popcorn before bed.
And I don't make them wear pajamas. They can sleep in whatever they want to wear. Which has included underwear and, once, #2 slept in a Goodwill Prom formal I got for $1.00.
This policy has prompted my mother to announce loudly to all assembled on several occasions that I am a bad mother.
Sometimes I forget the kid was grounded two days ago and I let him play the Gamecube.
Sometimes if the child comes to me with sincere remorse, I will lessen the consequences.
And that's why MG and I are having a rough time co-parenting.
Because he thinks I need to tighten up the ship.
I think he needs to take a chill pill.
He tells everyone who will listen that I have "control issues".
I'll be the first on to admit that YES, I am responsible for my children. They are an extension of me. I raised them. I taught them right from wrong. If you criticize them, you criticize me.
So is my attitude wrong? Maybe.
Do my parenting skills leave much to be desired? Probably.
Do my kids know I love them more than life no matter what? I hope so!
Are my kids brats? Sometimes.
But I'm the only one who can say that.
Is it hard to "co parent"? WhoaYeah!
Am I gonna keep trying? By all means. I love him. He loves me. Somehow we'll work it out.
Am I gonna change? Maybe.
But then again, Maybe Not.
I do have control issues, you know.
And I'm stubborn, too.