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Random thoughts from a woman in love

I listened patiently the other night while a mother complained to me that her 12-year old son “made” her take him to the skateboard park.  He apparently threatened to throw a temper tantrum if she didn’t.  Excuse me? A 12-year old boy THREATENED to throw a temper tantrum? Oohhhohohoho – BRRRRRRING IT!  I just heard a bell go off somewhere (the kind they use to mark the beginning or end to a round of boxing).

She asked me what I would have done.  Silly woman – I know she already knew that answer.  She’s heard me speak on parenting many times before:  If that were my son (and it would never have been my son, because he knew better…), I would have told him, “Wait! Let me sit down for this, I don’t want to miss a thing.  When you are done, it’s my turn.  My tantrums involve voluntary spasms of my hand and result in smacks against 12-year old butts.”

Now, I don’t condone random spanking, but there are times in a child’s life where a spanking is definitely in order.  When your 5-year old pulls her hand from yours, defiantly marches out into traffic and nearly gets hit by a car in the process, she deserves a spanking.  When you 12-year old son threatens social terrorism to get his way, he deserves a spanking.   When your 16-year old daughter cusses you out in front of her friends (or in private – matters not which), she deserves a public spanking.

I have been a parent for 23 years now.  And I have been a pretty good parent (per my son and his friends).  Not once have I caved to social terrorism.  To make a point, I once mimicked my son’s tantrum in the middle of a shopping mall – embarrassed the hell out of him.  He hasn’t thrown a tantrum in the 18 years since that incident.

Parents – please remember:  You are the parent.  You make and enforce the rules.  If you make a rule and don’t enforce it, you become…the government.  Not good.  If you say “no”, mean it.  If you say “yes”, own it.

We like to blame others for our children’s habits, attitudes or behaviors.  Stop that!  If your child isn’t physically fit, it’s yours and your child’s fault – not the fault of McDonalds, Pizza Hut or Cold Stone.  If your child back-talks you, it’s because you let him.  If she behaves like a spoiled rotten princess, you taught her to do so (or let her hang out with friends who taught her to do so).  Step up and parent, or get out of the way because your kids are going to run all over you.

*sigh* That 12-year old boy needed a “Come to Momma” meeting (actually, so did the mother – I am so disappointed in her for caving in and taking that child to the park). My “Come to Momma” meetings are also known as “Come to Jesus” meetings.  Listen to me, follow my rules, or else…there will be blood. Or no video games for a month. Whichever is less messy?

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