Being a good mom, the way I judge it, actually includes doing many things I never thought I’d do. Things like yelling at my kid in public or letting them watch TV in the morning before school. And lying to them. Wait — there are lies parents tell? Yep. And don’t worry, I don’t make a habit of lying to them on purpose, but I have definitely noticed that when I’m pushed to my limits, the lies — or empty threats — fly freely out of mouth. Admit it — I bet you do it, too!
How many times have you lied like this?
- The next time I find a fast food bag crumpled in the car, you’ll never be allowed to eat in the car again.
- From now on, if your clothes are crumpled and inside out, that’s how I’m washing them.
- I’m never walking around the house picking up dirty laundry again. If you want clean clothes, put the dirty ones in the hamper, not on the floor.
- NO DESSERT FOR A MONTH. (I have taken away treats from my kids for a week before . . . but when I heard “month” coming out of my mouth, I cringed)
- I am DONE cleaning toilets. From now on, it’s all you.
- No more TV (or iPad, or Kindle) until everything else is done (homework, dinner, brush teeth, etc.)
- The next time I find and step on a Lego on the floor, I’m throwing them all out.
- If you splash like a whale in the bathtub again, I’m taking away all the bath toys (forever) and there will be no more bath time. (Wait – what?!?!)
- We will NEVER fingerpaint again if you insist on putting it all over yourself.
- BREAKFAST DESSERT is not a thing. (let’s be honest – sometimes a little cupcake after an omelet is just what you need to start the day right!)
What have you said that you mean so fiercely in the moment and then you don’t enforce? Tell me I’m not alone!
The way I see it, these “lies” are OK. I’ve followed through on most of them in some way, though not fully . . . but enough to let the kids know I’m frustrated and something needs to change. They have cleaned the toilets themselves, sorted laundry and put it away, and survived without dessert (the horror!) for a day or a week at a time. Somehow, the bathroom floor is still always soaked during bathtime . . . but they’re only kids once, so let them splash, right?
Happy parenting, y’all. You’re doing a great job. 🙂 And that’s no lie.