(snort) I wish...
One problem I have with Dr. Laura is that she only had one kid.
Not that I have a huge issue with only children, really, it's just that she dispenses all of this parenting advice having been successful with her one son. Her one-personality, one-kind-of-reaction, all-attention-given-to son.
Um, in case you haven't noticed: kids are different.
I, while full of parenting flaws, am actually pretty consistent. We've done pretty similar things with each kid: sleep training around 5 months, insisting that our kids eat well-rounded meals, using the not-listening chair as a Time Out system, instituting a fairly successful chore system etc.
Of course we react to each child differently based on their birth order, their sex, what's going on in our lives at the time, but not hugely.
And guess what? They are totally different in how they behave.
The reason I'm bringing all of this up? Seth is a bad egg.
Okay, not totally bad. But we've never had a kid give us a run for our money like this one does.
He is now in a big boy bed. And he won't stay in it. For the first few days, we nicely put him back, blah blah blah, but lately we've had to pull out the big guns.
Can I chronicle for you previous children and their reactions to this scenario?
Child #1: My second most headstrong kid. She and I went the rounds at a few naptimes and bedtimes between the ages of 18 months and 4 years old, but basically after I
- consistently put her back in bed when she got out,
- and then locked her door,
- she would scream and cry,
- I would ignore her
- she would figure out that I meant business
- after 2-3 times, would stay in her bed
Child #2 and 3: Watched Child #1 take a nap/stay in bed at night and just figured that's what we do, and really never challenged the concept.
Child #4: Same household, same example, same expectations= VERY DIFFERENT RESULT. In the last two weeks, we have
- placed gently (and not so gently) back in bed,
- held the door shut, tied the door shut,
- switched the door knob so it would lock
- locked it
- ignored yelling/crying pleas: "Mom, I'm peyoopy! Mom, I need a tiss (kiss)! Mom, I'm taking my diaper off! (and our personal favorite) Emma, Gabe, can you open dis door?!"
and you know what? after weeks of this--he stills gets out of his bed almost every night and we do it all over again.
And nobody likes it (the kids all groan from their rooms when I head up to turn the lock), and we are getting sick of the game. We are kind at a loss.
So there, Dr. Laura, what do you have to say about that?