(Dr. Jekyll #1 is here)
Yesterday was a Dr. Jekyll/ Mr. Hyde day for Ricki. And she was a lot of Mr. Hyde. Home from school due to having been ill the day before (and so I was afraid she might still be ill…), yet feeling good, she had time on her hands.
Ricki was intent on playing her tape at loud volumes, irrespective of what others requested. Whatever struck her fancy, she demanded incessantly, cursing me if I did not comply. Finally, tired and fed up, I went at three in the afternoon to take an hour’s nap. Ricki, who was in the middle of badgering me to open the computer for her (which I had told her would only be done AFTER homework), suddenly stopped mid-sentence.
She turned around (apparently realizing that there was NO hope of getting computer time), and stomped off to the living room. From my bed I could hear her taking out her wrath on her imaginary friends. “You are NOT going to get computer. You have to do your homework!” “No, I do not allow!.” After a few minutes of this, she stopped, turned on her favorite song disc, and started singing. At 4 pm she was an adorable and willing homework student.
I think I should take naps more often…
But of course the real point is, that if your child knows that you will not change your mind, and that you will not continue to discuss the situation, it is much easier for him to change direction and calm down. [I know I have a tendency to continue to argue when I should just shut up…] It may take a few weeks before a child sees that you mean what you say, but it works!