Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Sorry, just feel the need to get it out of the system!

I dont undrstand why when I talk nicely to the kids they refuse to respond. I have to shout and scream and threaten before I get any action. It can be something as simple as do your homework first before watching TV. That has been my rule all along. Its not that they dont know it. I think they are just trying their luck. And they will sit there like logs refusing to move until I explode.

Also, its not that they dont know sweet wrappers and chewing gum belong in the bin? Come on, thats common sense. Yet, I still find it stuck in between the sofa, behind the sofa, in my shoe, in between the books on the bookshelf, under the table, on the floor, etc. Everywhere but the bin! I have to really threatened NOT to buy them anymore if it continues then it stops for a couple of days. You know, I have to clear the fridge every couple of days of sweet wrappers and trash. Why cant they just put trash where it belongs. I am sure that is taught at school!!

Why, oh why?

Just yesterday, I heard my son threatening little D to move away from the TV (as she was blocking him) or he would hit her. When I scolded him for threatening her, he said it was because I threaten him too, so he is just doing the same. Sigh.

But isnt it different? He is old enough to understand and take instructions. And he has his responsibilities. But he refuses to do my bidding until I threaten him. Why cant he just obey me? I always reiterate the rules, I always ask him nicely first, but he still refuses to listen. I have even gone to the extent of saying: "N! I am talking to you nicely. Please do as you are told or do you want me to get nasty?" Sometime it works, sometimes it doesnt.

Why cant I just get him to obey and observe certain rules. I am becoming a "bully" and a tyrant because of him. Any suggestions on how to solve this?


bp said...

Sama sama here! You telling N why can't he just listen and obey, when you're asking him nicely to do something, is how I say it to Jon, too! Exact same (kind of) words!

Sorry, I don't have a ready solution, and I've realised raising my voice doesn't always work, although my husband thinks I should keep my instructions short and sweet becoz that's all the kids want to hear (not mommy going on and on, which I have a tendency to do!).

And if it helps to know, I also don't get it why our kids can't do it automatically (like the sweet wrappers case) or do as they are told when we tell it to them nicely. Like you said, it's just like them to see how far they can stretch our limits! Hang in there! I guess it's partly becoz it's the school hols over your end, so your kids just want to relax.

Maybe tell it to them once, spell out ahead the consequence, and just have to be firm if they deliberately disobey? I'm trying to do that myself ;p

Sweetiepie said...

Sometimes I had this exactly the same scene at home.I also want to find a way to improve this at home.:(

JoMel said...

I would just switch off the tv or switch to my favorite channel there and then, since he is so defiant in defending himself. Until he says sorry! Hehehe... I am very regimental one.

AG said...


Ya.. I understand perfectly what you mean. I find myself in somewhat similar situations sometimes. As for the threatening, we have been reminding my elder girl that she has absolutely no authourity over her younger sis. The best she can do is to file a complaint with the govt of the household. If she really does discipline her younger sis, we will ensure that she gets twice of what she gave. So far, it has never happen though.

stay-at-home mum said...

Hi bp
yes, i try to keep it short and sweet too - but still no help. I know anything more than 3 words and they switch off. So sometimes I just say "Homework!" and point to the study. but still doesnt always work. and no,no its not becoz of the hols becoz i give them quite a bit of leeway. I made sure they finished their homework last weekend. heehee!

Hi sweetiepie & ag
Guess its a universal problem.

I do what you do sometimes. I also try not to watch TV when they are doing their work. But I have never made them say sorry - must make them do it.

mumsgather said...

"Why must you all do it only when I shout at you and beat and not when I ask nicely????!!!"

Sounds just like me so sorry can't help you there.

As for sweets, they don't eat any so I have no worries about sweet wrappers. Haha. But they do eat lots of chocs tho. They are good at throwing the wrappers in the bin becos they want to eat mah, no throwing means no chocs. Usually, they have to ask permission to eat, no taking on their own. So right after they eat I ask them to throw and they do.

Ling That's Me said...

I think most parents face the same prob as I am too although my girl is only 4yo+

Sometimes I ignore them...and making a very sad face. both my kids hate to see me sad and after that, they will give in and listen to me. but sometimes, maybe I use the method too much until they understand I am just trying my luck too! lol...

U.Lee said...

Hi Stay home mom, took a wrong turning somewhere landed here. Nice blog you have.
Read thru your 'rants', ha ha, previous ones too and can see you not alone with your headaches.
I am a retired gentleman with a fair share of kids.
Long ago,...we had similar problems like yours when my two boys were young.
The mother went bonkers and short of killing them, ha ha, she practically gave up and called for the 7th Calvalry. Me.
I was away 4 days of the week, two weeks in a month living in hotels all over SEA on business trips.
So one day I took a day off and observed, and yes, the two guys were behaving like future Mafia wannabe's.
I did not say anything.
I got hold of two large boxes, went to their very untidy rooms, threw everything they owned into the boxes, including their shoes, clothes etc...and they running up to see what all the noise was about? I never said anything as they panic asking what I was doing?
I took both the large boxes downstairs, then only called both of the guys, 9 and 12 years old. Then, I took out two Rgt 10 giving each boy 10, and said very softly, "I want both of you to get out of my house! You have Rgt 10, go find somewhere to live, I don't care where, and don't you dare come home no longer have a mother, because you don't treat her as your mother but as a maid.
I have to work to earn money to support you two idiots, now you get out, I will find an easier job, earn less, but happier no need to travel".
Then I shouted, "GET OUT OF MY HOUSE"!
Lady, if you have never seen two young boys cry and run to their mother...they sure cried, seeing me throw their box out on the road spilling everything. Neighbours came out to look.
They just stood there crying their hearts out, holding to their mother, saying they want to stay back, and saying, "please daddy, we are sorry".
I then told them to stand while I got a big piece of paper and wrote my 10 commandments...for every one, I asked them, "you both agree"? They answered me as well the mother, like two well trained soldiers, "yes, daddy".
The 10 commandments?
Just a sample here,
1/ I will wake up on my own every morning.
2/ I will make my own bed and keep my room tidy,
3/ I will not let mummy tell me to do anything,
4/ I will do my homework everyday at 2pm till 4pm...etc etc.
I pasted that paper outside their room.
Lady, they were still crying same time seeing their stuff all on the road by the time I finished.
I then made them kneel down and apologise to their mother as well all pocket money will be earned from then on. Washing dishes 25 cents, sweep the floor 20 cents, water the garden 20 cents etc more free money, they have to earn to stay with us.
Lady, what I did was reversed applied Psychology, I call it 'the SHOCK TREATMENT'
It worked!
Today, one has two degrees, Aerospace Engineer as well a Robotics Engineer.
Other son, a senior executive in a Japanese company.
And they love their mother, treated her like a mother.
Finaly, a man loves his sweetheart the most, his wife the best. But his mother the longest.
Would you believe, even the neighbours kids behaved themselves after witnessing what I had done.
My two boys grew up as sons any parent would be proud to have after that. They grew up THAT DAY!
Today they are good, law abiding citizens.
But kids are kids, sometimes you have to apply a different strategy or use psychology.
My time young days, we had a status symbol in our house, a 3 feet long cane.
Human rights not known then, ha ha.
You have a nice day, UL.

stay-at-home mum said...

Thanks for your comment U. Lee.

Looks like your shock treatment works. I guess we pamper our kids a bit too much nowadays, esp the grandparents. I can never do what you did, coz the grandparents will come running to "save" them, and it is in their house I am living in.

Iml said...

This is the scenario most households go through including mine. It's a trying time testing the patience and power struggle. Calmly turn of the telly. No explaination needed.

NomadicMom said...

looks like you are having the same dose of medicine that I had this week!! Hahahha.. sorry. shouldn't laugh. My kids also throw sweet wrappers all over the place. How like that? Talk nicely kenot. Scold kenot. Scream kenot.So how??

stay-at-home mum said...

Heh nomadicmom - dont laugh lah! Makes our blood boil right? Just smile, and look away - if not get angry all the time will age faster!

you are right -its a power struggle. But sometimes we shouldnt win all the time. Got to choose our battles carefully.