I started writing this blog out of frustration. Parenting is a tough job, and homeschooling adds a whole ‘nother dimension. Many were the days that Hubby came home to me angry, and I was often in tears. There were a lot of different situations and reasons, and one by one we’ve worked on the problems. Not all of them are solved and many required effort on our part as well as time for the boys to do some growing. But things are better.
That said, I spent the last couple of days angry. For some reason, the boys have slipped into an incredible phase of carelessness. Rules that they’ve been trained to follow for years are ignored and when I remind them of things like “wet swimsuits go in the utility sink” they just look at me blankly. I despise walking on wet carpet, and I don’t want mold and mildew to grow so this is rather a big issue. Especially when 4 boys are dumping swimsuits and wet towels all over the house multiple times a day.
Add to that the complete lack of response when I asked for things to be cleaned up, or the fact that I routinely have the SAME argument conversation 4 times in a row on any one topic and you can see how I lost my temper.
So I yelled.
This was moderately effective in the short term. It still took several lectures to get the house cleaned up, as well as temporary grounding from “all things screen-related until this house is clean doggoneit”.
There I was with a clean(er) house, but still pretty angry. Hubby taught me long ago how to let go of my anger, but for some reason it just wasn’t working for me this time. I guess I just needed a little time.
And a smack on the backside. I was going through the comments last night to give my responses when a few from the post about being proud of your kids caught my attention. UPrinting said that “Moms are great that way aren’t they? They manage to make all the difference in a kid’s life with just the simplest of words.” And then Rachel White said “Some people don’t realise how much impact they have on someone else’s life; whether it’s the smallest of negative comments that can affect someone for the rest of their lives to a massive confidence boost.”
Ouch. I wasn’t doing much to encourage my own children, just knocking them down for all the mistakes they were making.
So. Today I have done better at being friendly. When The Mercenary made a choice that annoyed me, I managed to ask him why he did that and then explain that he’d thwarted the plan I already had in action and could he please talk to me first next time? I’m still not feeling like butterflies and rainbows, but I figure some improvement is better than none.
Thanks for the comments that help me stay on track, Internets.
Earnest Parenting: help for parents who are frustrated.