It’s enough to drive a bird batty

(If you knew that my title was Big Bird talking to Count from the Sesame Street 25th Anniversary DVD, kudos to you)

Thank you to all of you who had suggestions for me regarding the chores with the kids. I can tell you that Megan is no longer earning money for doing any chores. Last week I told her that I had washed, dried and folded all of her clothes and they were on my bed for her to gather and put away. Her response was “but you don’t pay me to do that, so why should I?” Yes folks, this is what we’re dealing with. So, no more money for her.

And it’s not just the chores that are an issue for us. It’s the general ATTITUDE of the kids around here these days. The bickering, the toy throwing, the hitting. The fighting generally starts with Meg and Drew before I’m even out of bed in the morning. Do you know what it’s like to be awakened by screaming and/or slamming doors at 6:30? It’s not pleasant, and it’s a consistent theme in this house. It sets a tone for the day that is not easily overcome. The worst part is that whatever attitude Meg has starting the day hangs over the other three kids all day long too. I see Drew treating Annie and Izzie the way Meg treats him and I feel powerless to stop it. He actually just looks through me when I am talking to him about his behavior. I spend lots of my day reminding the kids that I am the mother, that I make the rules, and that they need to listen to me. It does no good though.

I used to think of myself as a generally happy person, but lately I feel like the Wicked Witch of the West. Or East. Who wants to be the parent that generally can’t stand the sight of their kids because they’re always fighting? Who actually wants to admit that they don’t like their kids the majority of the time? Oh, we have the rare moment around here where the kids are playing nicely. Or sleeping. Or being helpful. But it seems that on the whole, things are just plain awful. I’m tired of yelling at the kids. I’m tired of being talked back to. I just want to be a happy Mama.

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6 thoughts on “It’s enough to drive a bird batty

  1. You are the pack leader. You are their leader. You can do this. You’re a rockstar. You can do freaking anything. These kids aren’t going to push you to the brink. Nope. Not you. You are the pack leader.Now go repeat that in the mirror.

  2. You KNOW I hear you.Lisa has been a little better lately, but she always seems like she’s on the brink of flipping out. One thing we’ve been doing is having her live with consequences. Like the day she refused to cooperate when getting ready for school. We dropped her off with her hair all over the place. She later called Homer from the office and asked him to bring her a brush and he said “no way, maybe next time you’ll cooperate in the morning”. I’ve also stopped yelling. I just calmly tell them to go to their rooms (sometimes physically taking them there) and invite them to join the rest of the family once their attitude has improved.We had a breakthrough last weekend when Lisa was painting a picture and Bart came along and accidentally spilled her paint water all over the paper. Instead of going nuts, she disappeared to her room for awhile. When she came back she asked me, through clenched teeth, to please put the picture somewhere safe to dry. Baby steps.

  3. I feel your pain, and I am right there with you! It’s the same way at our house. Kaitlin is the master of destruction! It’s gotten to the point that I don’t let Nicky and Chris up until she leaves for school!

  4. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but my house was ruled by the mood of my eldest until…she moved out to go to college. I LOVE that kid dearly, but our house has been a sea of tranquility since she got her own place.

  5. maybe devise a new reward system, like breakfast or dinner out locally alone with a parent. Sounds like they need some 1 on 1 time. And increase the stakes a bit as they progress.

  6. though mine are a bit older i’m still taking baby steps too. today? the girl was horrible—in CHURCH–no less because the boy decided he was now to old for children’s church and decided to stay w/ us instead. the girl said that was “her” thing and he was just doing it to annoy her. ugh. so, yeah, i feel your pain. but, it does get better. big hugs for you.

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