Thursday, December 20, 2007

Parenting Help: What Do You Do...

... when your 11 y/o is caught sneaking treats into her backpack (while under "punishment" of no special treats after blowing through $20 in lunch money) and proceeds to tell you that she does not like being punished and likes special things & treats and will basically ignore you and do whatever she wants to get them when no one is looking?

(She sounded EXACTLY like Maleficent when she proclaimed that. We're scared shitless that she's turning into her Mother.)

Consequences lose their effectiveness if a child refuses to acknowledge or accept them.
What's a parent to do?
Put all sweets under lock and key?
Throw them all away so the entire family suffers?
Watch said child like a hawk and never leave her alone in a room?

Helpful advice is welcome.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like it's time for what we call in my house a "come to Jesus" talk. It starts with validating that yes, she is allowed to have an opinion and feelings about whatever she likes. but it's quickly followed by an explanation about how this is NOT a democracy.. it's a dictatorship. And as long as she continues to disregard the rules, the more trouble she'll get into.. the less privileges she'll have until ultimately, she's stuck in her room (minus school) with no tv, no music, no friends, no going out etc, all because she couldn't follow the rules of the house. I usually tell it like this.. "you're going to do it my way no matter what.. the question is, are you going to do it the easy way or the hard way?"

Good luck!

clevergirl said...

We really have to watch ourselves whenever we think that Sunshine is acting like her biomom. We tend to freak out a bit and I think we go overboard with punishment trying to prevent her from being like her mom...However it seems like in your situation there is definitely a need for more punishment. She should not have talked back to you like that. I would definitely take something else away in addition to the treats, or extend the no treat punishment longer or something.

Anonymous said...

I think it is time to eliminate the treats or put them under lock and key. Reinforce that she is to respect you and her father in your house. She is reaching the age for ALL children to start rebelling, especially for young ladies, since the hormones are out-of-control. It's going to be hard! I remember what I put my parents through at that age! But never back down, and she'll get the picture, whether she likes it or not. Good luck to you!

Anonymous said...

Oh, one more thing....just make sure you don't accuse her openly of being "exactly like your mother"! That will just pit her against you. I have a stepson, and his bio-mom often accuses him of being "just like your daddy", and--trust me--that's a GREAT thing! However, she doesn't say it in quite a positive tone. I can tell it confuses him.

Of course, I have no doubt you know to bite your tongue in such a situation, no matter how hard it may be! :)

Wicked Stepmom said...

Thanks for your helpful comments.

We've begun laying the groundwork for the "easy way vs. hard way" and have reassured Cinderella that she *will* have no choice but to accept the consequences to her behavior one way or another. We're still trying to figure out an appropriate consequence.

We *NEVER* speak ill of her Mother or accuse Cinderella of being just like her. We prefer she remain ignorant of Maleficent's disregard for authority... knowing she will one day figure it out all on her own. *sigh*

Tojosan said...

i'd say there is another issue obviously beyond the treats. The treats isn't really the issue and perhaps focusing on that might be more distraction than it's worth. I'd recommend just ditching the treats for a while maybe, and then disciplining her with something more directly tied to the original issue.

Kids WILL sneak things and they will find hidden things and sneak them too. They will likely get over this phase. I don't recommend focusing more time and energy on it than the kid spends thinking about it.

You're doing great not to play the 'you're like so n so' card!!!