San Luis Obispo
Number of kids: 8
Ages of kids: 2, 4, 5, 6, 8, 12, 14, 17
Problem: I have been a parent for almost 17 years now and still have trouble getting respect from my children. Oh there fun to be around, but they sure can cause the problems. When I go to correct them, they say, You can't do that, or I'll call the cops. Any advice. This is getting old. I tried all the other things in life, but nothing works.
Solution posted by "Mabear" from Phoenix, AZ:Wait,wait,wait! Please! I disagree with the power struggle approach to discipline. Why? Because the foundation of love (which began being built the day each of your children was born) is compromised. We have recently begun a regular Sunday night family meeting plan because our lives got so busy and disorganized that we weren't even AWARE half the time of problems that were growing in behavior until they got so big they affected the whole household. I think the thing that was different about my perspective as compared to the one that wrote above though is that I see a big change in behavior as a cry for help in dealing with some aspect of life. Our family meetings allow EACH member of the family to talk and then each to share in the support. At the VERY least this method makes firm the fact that no matter what the problem is, whether it be between family members, school friends, neighborhood pals, work related, teacher related or whatever, we as a family will be the greatest support network that a person could have. Id like to share the "order" of the meetings in case anyone else wants to try it. 1. Completed chore cards are collected from the children and allowances given according to chores and homework done. 2. New cards handed out for the upcoming week. 3.Special recognition time for outstanding performance. (this proved to be a WONDERFUL addition because we tended to overlook the good behaviors and accomplishments as simply "expected" of the children. But WOW, what a confidence builder THAT ended up being! So much so that I became very careful to watch for things to praise.)4.Problem discussion time.(It most always is the loooooongest one.) 5.General schedule for upcoming week. Just things to look forward to etc.5. Vacation schedule plans. (Chaos makes you lose track of time but discussing a good, fun, not too far distant plan for a small outing or vacation is an excellent way to end the meeting.)I'm sitting here wondering how I can help people to see that a child is absolutely the most precious possession you will ever have on this earth and it is NOT a matter of control ....its a matter of BUILDING in LOVE. As a small comparison, if you have a car that you like a lot and it starts to stall out and rattle a bit what do you do? Hit it a few times? Give it a good punch for good measure? OF COURSE NOT!!!! You scratch your chin, say hmmmm....and then try to figure out what's wrong SO YOU CAN FIX IT!!! What a concept huh? Well you deal with a child the same way except there is a little life riding on the solution you come up with and since that life is so very precious to you, your solution had better come from your heart! I would love to not have to think about spending 2 hours every Sunday night preparing for and having a family meeting but for right now, the confidence of my family in the "We'll be there" kind of care is being shored up by doing this. Good grief! What am I doing up here on this soapbox?!:) Please stop first and consider your child though.
Solution posted by "Jford" from Knoxville, TN: I have the problem of getting respect from my daughter also. But she only tried the "I'll call the cops" routine once. I set her down and told her how lucky she was to have parents like us, because some other parents have been known to abuse their kids. I told her about how some parents burn and beat their kids some eventually killing them. If she called the cops, it would be her they took away, not us, so she had better be sure that's what she wanted to do. To discipline her, We take away her radio from her room, that's usually enough for her to calm herself down. It's very important to her!
Another solution posted by Mikhael from Arroyo Grande, CA: I just want to let you know, that I know how you feel. I have had the same problem with my kids too. I still don't know where they picked that line up at, I guess the school. But let me tell you that when they make that THREAT to me, I just wipe the tar out of them, even more. My 7 year old spouted off to me one day with, "I'm going to tell my teacher," well I gave him something to show her, boy did that shut him up fast. Couldn't walk straight for a week. Some times it's just a power struggle, and you need to let them know "who is boss."
Editor's Note: We at the #!Parentsroom would like to state that we DO NOT condone physical violence as a solution to parenting problems.
Another solution posted by Bingo from Bakersfield, CA: I am appalled at you!!You should be ashamed of yourself. Innocent people like me can not have babies to love and you don't even apprectiate yours. You should be horse-whipped ! I hope that one day your children treat you the way you have treated them, and then you will be sorry, you-you-bully. I am a christian person who loves all of God's creatures (except you), I would love to sit here and give you a piece of my mind, but I have to go pray now, for I have sinned in my thoughts of hatred towards you. Please think of me and people like me when you say mean things to your precious, loving children. After all, they did not ask to be born....to you anyway.
Editor's Note: I am assuming if this reponse is indeed a legitimate response that it is in reference to the "solution" right above it.
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