I was right. I should have skipped motherhood in favor of a litter of kittens. Seriously. At least you can give kittens away in a cardboard box or lock them in the bathroom with a bowl of kitty chow without serious legal consequences.
Not so with children. In this day and age people freak out about the way parents raise their kids. Heaven forbid you drop them off at playcare so you can drink a latte in peace, let alone (gasp!) spank them.
When did this spaz-fest begin? When I was a kid, I got paddled in school and played unattended in the backyard with a German Shepherd and my dad’s rusted hand saw. Ever try sawing a coconut open? I did.
This past week, my children have been out of control. Mega out of control. My two year old is obsessed with Dora the Explorer, who by the way is the most annoying big-headed character in cartoon land, and throws a tantrum whenever I turn it off. And when I say tantrum I want you to picture a twenty-five pound demon child growling, foaming at the mouth and screaming like a banshee.
My daughter, on the other hand, has simply discovered that she hates me. I know. Daughters hate mothers. It’s natural…at 16. My kid’s seven.
I have been told that I am the worst mother about 12 gagillion times in the past 168 hours. Except, because she has a bit of a speech impediment it comes out, “You da wust mom evah!” Sometimes she’ll just randomly walk by me, hiss and mutter, “Wust!”
It gets a bit tiring.
Not to mention, I feel like I go to great lengths to be a nice mom. We do fun stuff. We have special mother and daughter alone time. We wrestle and read together. I buy her stuff. What the hell else am I supposed to do? So she doesn’t have the big playground set from Costco or a Wii. So what? Okay, the lack of a Wii is kind of a good-childhood deal breaker, but I’m working on it.
The problem comes when it’s time to discipline the kids. My boy is pretty sensitive so simple threats like, “Scream at me one more time and Elmo’s toast” or “Mommy is going to sell you to Takamiya Market if you’re not good” still work well. But it’s a totally different story with my daughter.
Take away the DS? I don’t care. Take away television. Whatever, Mom. Want a spanking? Catch me if you can.
The only thing that seems to get her attention is not letting her go to Grandpa and Grandma’s house. The problem is that Grandpa and Grandma get uber pissed at me when I use them as part as a punishment. Let’s not even get into the amount crap I have to wade through if she winds up with a spanking in my house after a long day of trying to reason with her.
Funny how parents forget the way they parented.
It’s not that I think spanking is the way to go. I think it’s a last resort, but at the same time a swift slap to the bum-bum may be the only way to get a kid to realize that what they are doing is totally and 100 percent not okay. My question to all the peace and love parents out there is, would you rather your kid’s butt sting for a minute or have them grow up to be a complete asshole that no one can stand?
I think that as long as a parent has thought everything through, knows their child and has his or her best interest at heart, let them deal with bad behavior as they see fit. No parent looking out for their kid is going to actually hurt them physically or emotionally. Occasional spanking is not abuse. In fact, letting your kid get away with being a prick is abuse. You’re hurting their chance of having a pleasant and productive future.
As for me and my girl, I have no idea what the right solution is. Nothing seems to work. She’s one hell of a stubborn kid. I guess I’ll just keep on trying to steer her in the right direction, keep taking her angry words on the chin and look forward to the day when I can tell her that her hard head and unwavering determination are two of the things that I’ve always admired most about her. MTW
Starr Begley can’t wait for the hippies to attack.