I really wish I could start this new link from Rachel of Confessions of a SAHM on a positive note. Sadly, my decision to use A for Attitude is not positive.
Harry has developed an attitude of late. One that would not be out-of-place in a teenager. Sure, for the most part he is the happy, cheeky, kind and lovable little guy that everyone loves and adores. Sometimes though, just sometimes, we get a glimpse of what I imagine the future will hold.
The husband and I have discovered that there appears to be a fine line between cheekiness and misbehaviour.
If I am honest, I struggle. I find it is so much easier to handle a child who is happy, plays nicely, interacts well. It IS easy. It's not so easy when the same child throws things, shouts, slams doors, is rude. When he refuses to get out of the bath (I can't lift him out), to get dressed, to brush his teeth.
At four-years-old, Harry knows when he has misbehaved or when he has done something that upsets me or the husband. You can see, in the brief moments before, him mentally planning what to do or what to say. Removing privileges doesn't seem to help; use of an old laptop to play games on, TV, messy play, a trip to the park, sweets. We don't have anywhere to place him for time out; one hall way leads to the kitchen, the other to the bedrooms and bathroom. Today we tried to shut him in his bedroom which just ended up with a trashed bedroom. I don't think a reward chart would work either since it's all a series of little things; answering back, shouting, rudeness, refusing to let us brush his teeth, demanding things. Besides, I am not sure I am comfortable with punishing or rewarding behaviour but they are all things we have tried.
I also don't think it helps that things are different with the husband. I don't know whether Harry behaves better or the husband just handles it all easier. Obviously the husband gets to do more with Harry as well, which may well be a part of it; I join them on trips to the park or to play games in the field when I can but often, I cannot.
All of that said, tomorrow is another day, one which I hope will be better. I have planned a bus trip to the local village where we will have a couple of little things to do, followed by milkshake and cake together. If Harry enjoys it as much as I hope he does, then I will make it a regular a thing, each week for just the two of us.
How do you deal with your child(ren) misbehaving? Have you any words of wisdom to impart on me before I lose my mind?