Need birth control for your teen? Just call me.

22 Jul

Vivian received her first public smack today.

Let me preface this with my standard disclaimer. I do not believe in corporal punishment as a rule. I do not beat my children with sticks, rods belts or any other long, heavy or painful object. But I do not object to a swat on the ass every so often. In my mind, it reinforces the “nu-uh” feeling of why Mommy is telling you for the 400th time why we do not bend down to examine rocks in the middle of our very busy road.

(ETA: Great Article at Dr Sears that covers occasional “shock value swats” as well as what I would consider child abuse here.)

anyway….

So today we’re standing in McDick’s so I can get a McFlurry since my stomach hasn’t been quite pissed off at me enough. I’m holding Vivian since I took her shoes off in the car, and didn’t want her walking on the floor. (and no, normally we don’t eat this crappy, but we’ve been travelling alot this weekend)

She started messing with my hair. I told her to stop a few times. She stopped. Then, she spit IN MY FACE.

I swear to crap it took all I had to not fully swing my hand back and give her one straight across the mouth out of pure visceral reaction. She SPIT on me! On her mother! Dear FSM, if my mother was alive and she dared to that to her, my mother would have beaten the child black! The sheer disrespect!

As it was, I managed to keep it to a short but distinctly loud slap on the mouth. Which then had the effect of making me feel like everyone stopped what they were doing and were staring at me. At the bad mom. I swear time slowed and I felt like someone was going to call the police on me for hitting my child for the one thing that guarantees ANYONE a slap in the face from me.

The two teenagers who were serving me gave me “that” look. You remember it-the “I am SOOOOO never having kids, and if I do, I’m not gonna end up all frizzy haired and dirty and mean like that lady.”

This wasn’t helped by the old woman who tried to cut me off in line either. What the hell is it with old people and queue’s that they cannot respect that someone is in front of them?

I don’t mind the fact that she got a tap. She deserved it frankly. She smartened the hell up from that point on in the day, seemingly jolted out of her “I’m an athol” behaviour. But the glares and stares I could feel-you don’t parent this child all day! You do not know what it’s like to try and reinforce manners and courtesy in an area that seems to not care at all for them. (as an example, the best drivers we saw all weekend were from Quebec. That is scary). I do not believe in pain as discipline but I sure as hell firmly believe in discipline according to circumstance.

I don’t want a kid who looks like the teenagers who served me-sullen and barely alive, nothing I’d pay even minimum wage. I want children who grow to adulthood realizing that actions have consequences, even if they aren’t PC at this moment.

I still can’t believe she spit in my face. The little rat….

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18 Responses to “Need birth control for your teen? Just call me.”

  1. Deb July 22, 2007 at 11:34 pm #

    Holy crap!!!!!!!!!!! My mom wouldve shoved a bar of soap in my mouth! Oh I wouldve gotten a big ole smack. What else can you do in public? They have to know they did wrong! Honestly, for me, I wouldve probably walked out of there if I was going there to get the kids lunch, but since it was for you and you know we moms need treats, I understand! Everyone stares at you like they never had a crying kid or screaming child ! UGH!

  2. Jennifer July 22, 2007 at 11:35 pm #

    See, I think once and a while you just HAVE to give a tap to reinforce that you mean business. I’ve never had to do this in public because the threat of sitting in the car doing nothing with daddy works beautifully.

    But the other day, when for the 4th time I told her to not hit her sister, I smacked her ass and put her in the corner. Call CPS on me.

    Thats another thing that pisses me off. I grew up being smacked, and besides the fact that my mother was a nutbar, I don’t think I was traumatized by it. The smacking not the psychosis. This whole society of “lets “talk” and “reason” with our kids. Yeah. This generation is going to be so ego centered and have no clue about consequences.

    offrant

  3. thordora July 22, 2007 at 11:39 pm #

    you’ve been spared the majority of THAT rant for another day. It’s building though. I was by no means abused by my mother, but all she needed to do was pick up that piece of wood to shut me down. i think she took it to excess, but I was one of those kids who really didn’t get it until I pushed you to the nth degree.

  4. The Mommanista July 22, 2007 at 11:54 pm #

    Shit guys…must you do this to me? I abhor hitting kids. I really do. Sorry. Spitting on you is awful. But I just don’t hit my kid. Ever.

    I don’t think you have to talk and reason with kids all the time, but I do think there are other ways to give kids the quick, effective message that they have done wrong. Zoë gets told, very firmly, that she has been a very bad girl and then gets a time out. She is very well behaved now, because she hates time outs…I just give her “the look” or a warning and she stops whatever she is doing. And yes, I do them in public. I will take her to the car or even set her down somewhere, tell her she is in a time out, and ignore her for a few minutes until she is ready to apolagize and then we can drop it.

    Sorry, I cannot be supportive blog friend here. I want to be, But I can’t. If I was there, I would have been giving you a dirty look too.

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think hitting is always abuse or always traumatizing, but I do think it is just not a good thing to do. Also, I hace seen some pretty serious injuries from what what meant to be a “tap”. I know one kid who ended up with a broken ear drum when she turned her face just as her mother was about to slap her cheek. I have also seen some pretty serious brusing from slaps.

    Of course, take my opinion from where it comes!

  5. Jennifer July 23, 2007 at 12:15 am #

    “I abhor hitting kids. I really do. Sorry. Spitting on you is awful. But I just don’t hit my kid. Ever.”

    Were you spanked as a kid? I always wonder if that is where it comes from. Now, my mother spanked at the drop of a hat. Yet, I can count on one hand how many smacks on the bum I’ve given. I wanted to be one of those parents who never spank, but, it’s damn hard to not give into the impulse.

    And like Thor, when that wooden spoon came out, you bet your ass I stopped doing whatever I was doing right quick. Glen went further one day and took them all and broke them on his mom.

  6. charlotteotter July 23, 2007 at 1:16 am #

    I hate spitting too. Germans seem to spit a lot, and my kids get into big trouble if they try to bring that bit of “culture” home. As for hitting, I also swore I would never do it, and of course I have, in extremis. I’m not proud but there you are.

  7. thordora July 23, 2007 at 7:19 am #

    That’s exactly it Charlotte. I do not want to be that mother, and I rarely am. But there is something so repulsive and rude and disrespectful about spitting in my face!

    We’ve talked about this with her before, and it rears it’s ugly head every so often.

    I also found it a lot easier to be a no hitting mom with one child. And we don’t “spank” (I have clear memories of spankings I received) But I firmly believe every child is different. Rosalyn you could smack until the cows come home, wouldn’t make a lick of difference. So she doesn’t get smacked. Vivian however, sometimes needs to be “jolted” from herself so to speak.

    I don’t condone hitting, and generally I argue against it. I know where you’re coming from Jill, and for the most part I do agree with you. I don’t want to parent with fear but talking doesn’t always work with Vivian-just like it didn’t always work with me.

  8. The Mommanista July 23, 2007 at 7:48 am #

    No Jennifer, I was never spanked as a child. Yet both me and my brother were relatively well behaved without being spanked, and certainly knew who was in charge…and that it wasn’t us.

    Sometimes nothing works with Zoë. I don’t like it, but she is an individual and she is a child so sometimes I have to accept that she is not going to “get it” and move past the incident.

    I don’t know where the impulse comes from. When I am very frustrated with Zoë, I also think in my mind that I want to spank here and have to sit on my hands (especially if I am PMSing), even though I was not spanked and do not support spanking. The impulse is still there. But it is my impulse, not a feeling that it would be the most appropriate and effective reponse, that feeds it. That is when I need a time out.

    Not trying to be all high and mighty here. I make mistakes and I have at times yelled at Zoë is a way that is probably no less worse than spanking, which I am ashamed of and try to control. But I cannot actually do anything with the intention of physically harming her. I just cannot. Keep my job in mind (feel free to e-mail me about it if you want, I don’t talk about it online).

    Finding being the sort of parent I want to be with only one child is a big part of the reason I only have one child. I cannot imagine having the patience and state of mind to parent more kids the way I like to parent.

  9. thordora July 23, 2007 at 7:58 am #

    “Not trying to be all high and mighty here. I make mistakes and I have at times yelled at Zoë is a way that is probably no less worse than spanking, which I am ashamed of and try to control”

    I think that’s a REALLY good point to make. To be, ignoring and screaming at my kids are the things that really get to me, since growing up, either one meant that not only was I in trouble, I was in SOOOOOO much trouble they didn’t know what to do with me yet. And I always felt that I had disappointed my parents, and couldn’t ever win back what I lost when I did somethiing to upset them. Whereas when I was spanked, it was done and over with-you did this, you got a swat, moving on.

    But I also spend hours thinking and rethinking what happened, and what could have happened instead, something I know my mother never did.

    The one kid thing is weird-sometimes I wish we only had one, but then you run into a single child family like we saw on the weekend-the parents likely thought the kid was wonderful, but she was HORRID! (and I’m not directing this at you at all) She couldn’t share, she was rude and mean. She even scratched Vivian while her parents were being passive agressive with each other.

    I don’t think my parenting would be enhanced by one kid, it would just be different and perhaps easier to calm down and find a happier place if I didn’t have Thing 2 imitating Thing 1 all the time.

    It’s also something that is very individual to a parent. I would never hit my child with the intention of hurting them (hence the restraint and moment of thought before the tap).

    There’s an answer somewhere, I just don’t know where.

  10. thordora July 23, 2007 at 8:11 am #

    So I was doing some reading about hitting as punishment, and ended up here http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/sfgate/detail?blogid=13&entry_id=12948

    finding a great idea

    The most *effective* punishment my mom ever used on us when we were disobedient or quarreling with each other was to have us stand facing the wall with our arms out to our sides like a T. As soon as arms dropped she’d say “Get those arms up!” (even from the other room!).

    It always seemed like an eternity but she said it was never longer than 2-3 minutes. Our shoulder muscles would be sore and we were definitely more quiet and mellow after that bit of yoga punishment!

    I don’t know if it will work, but I’m gonna try it on Vivian.

  11. karriew July 23, 2007 at 9:12 am #

    I’m with Charlotte. And spitting in my face, especially if I was under duress, might be enough to provoke an oops on my behalf too.

    None of it works with M though. The handful of times he has gotten a swat, he just laughed. And then has threatened to spank ME in public! You can imagine the looks….lol.

  12. radicalmama July 23, 2007 at 9:13 am #

    Dude, that rocks. What an awesome discipline tactic. Yoga!

  13. Magdalena July 23, 2007 at 9:27 am #

    Eh, nothing works for me. I just start to randomly throw shit out like a crazy person. Oh, you want to sass me? Say goodby to the garbage truck! One day all they will have to play with is a dirty mattress and a box of ziplocks.

  14. Judy July 23, 2007 at 9:58 am #

    I don’t like it when people use spanking as their standard method of discipline. I said I’d never hit my boys. There are times, though, when I’ve tried everything with Guthrie, and nothing works, and I don’t care what anyone says, there are some behaviors that HAVE to stop. Some things are absolutely unacceptable in a child, and if a swat on the thigh gets the point across, I don’t think long term harm will come. Obviously, it’s not what we do as a matter of course, but sometimes no amount of talking and reasoning will work, and th other thing I’ve figured out is you can’t always force a child to stay in time out.

    I’ve lost it and really yelled at my kids, and now, I am certain that is much worse than a quick effective swat on the butt. And I don’t remember ever being hit as a child, although my mom assures me I used to get “spanks” (probably small swats like this) at times. I was pretty well behaved and well mannered, respected my parents’ authority, and had a good relationship with my parents (until I got older and now my mom and I are constantly up and down – but it had nothing to do with being spanked).

    It also seems to be that every other animal I’ve observed uses some form of physical discipline to control their little ones. I remember watching my cat nip at her babies when they were getting out of hand. I think that impulse is there for a reason, and as long as it’s kept in check, it’s not necessarily harmful.

    And if I ever see any real change in attitude or personality after a swat, I might know it was wrong. But the other night Guthrie got one, and he just said, “Now I need a Band-Aid,” stopped the behavior, and snuggled up to me. No harm, no foul.

  15. Netter July 23, 2007 at 10:07 am #

    I’d like to do everything right, but I can’t. I’m a person with a three-year old who can’t always be reasoned with. The last time I spanked B was when he spit in my face, and that problably made three times in three years. Fortunately, we were at home so there was no one there to judge me. I felt horrible, just as I do when I lose my cool and scream at him. My parents stopped spanking when we were really young (I think my mom saw the fruitlessness of frequent physical punishement at her sisters’ houses) and I admired that about them.

  16. The Mommanista July 23, 2007 at 11:16 am #

    And I always felt that I had disappointed my parents, and couldn’t ever win back what I lost when I did something to upset them.

    Oh no. I never do that. It is quick. She does something, she is told it was bad behavior and she is getting a time out because of it. She has a time out for a couple minues. I come into the room or turn back to her, we cuddle, and it is over. Just like when you spank…after the consequence, it is over. She does not have to win me back. Also, the few times I have yelled at her in a way I wish I had not, I have apolagized afterwards. I may lose some credability/authority in doing so, but I still do.

    It also seems to be that every other animal I’ve observed uses some form of physical discipline to control their little ones. I remember watching my cat nip at her babies when they were getting out of hand. I think that impulse is there for a reason, and as long as it’s kept in check, it’s not necessarily harmful.

    I remember seeing my hamsters eat their young. 🙂 J/K

    The one kid thing is weird-sometimes I wish we only had one, but then you run into a single child family like we saw on the weekend-the parents likely thought the kid was wonderful, but she was HORRID! (and I’m not directing this at you at all) She couldn’t share, she was rude and mean. She even scratched Vivian while her parents were being passive agressive with each other.

    Eh, I know kids with siblings like this. There is so much more to what kind of child one is than whether or not they have siblings. I love having one. It allows me to be the parent, the wife, the social worker, and the person I want to be in a way I know I could not do with more kids. I know other people can do it with 2 or 3 or more kids, but I know I could not, so I stick with my limits!

  17. R July 23, 2007 at 12:44 pm #

    I’ve been spit on too. It’s hard to be calm when your child has just spat in your face. I think its because (not only is it disgusting), but in our culture, spitting in someone’s face is the biggest sign of disrespect you can dish out. It means that you hate the person, that you wish they were dead.

    Small children, however, haven’t lived long enough to know this.

  18. thordora July 23, 2007 at 12:53 pm #

    That’s just it. To me it’s only a step away from pissing on someone in terms of disrespect.

    But you’re right. I need to teach her.

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