Loud child in an apartment above. And unrelated whinge about noise in general

105 posts in this topic

I think you missed the irony in TheGreatDivide's comments. Discipline has definitely gone out of fashion. I have been called fundamentalist, medieval and Talibanesque for trying to impose limits. If there is no support from others,however, you end up looking like a dick for trying and the kid sees you being undermined which totally erodes your authority. My teenager is now acting like a teenager and I am shaking my head in despair and wondering where it is all gonna end. Like so many before me.

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TL:DR if you don't have children or don't care.

My first three children ended up all right, though I was a disaster as their mother when they were young.  Why?  Because I didn't discipline them; rather, I didn't teach them to discipline themselves. Jeez, I spanked them enough, but somehow that turned out not to result in self-discipline.  Huh.
But since I started over when those three were teen-agers, I'd been able to recognize my deficiencies.  From the beginning, in the delivery room, I held Vierling and later Fuenfling and told them what good babies they were.  When they were old enough to reach for things on the no-no list, I'd hold a little wrist - this makes them look at you - and gently/firmly say, 'Not for a good boy.'  I was lucky enough to be a stay-at-home mother, so I could keep a constant eagle eye on them and stop behavior that might turn bad. I didn't have to use corporal punishment.  Besides, I now believed that children shouldn't have to be afraid that their parents will hurt them.
So yes, I hovered like a helicopter, monitoring their behavior and always stressing that they were good boys and that 'We don't do that/say that.'  
We spent a week in a Venetian pension when the boys were 8 and 3, and on the last day the concierge went through her bundle of passports twice, looking for ours.  I could see our blue US passports as she ruffled through, and on her third try I pointed them out.  'Oh!' she said, 'Your boys are so well-behaved, I thought you were German!' (This woman believed the myth of Germans' iron control of their children.)

Little tricks, probably well-known to dog handlers:  you can get your child's attention with a whistle or a tongue click, useful if you're out of doors and don't want to yell your child's name.  A raised and shaken index finger can be a warning, or a shaken head, or both!  A smart pat on the top of a child's head can bring him to attention.  
They were happy boys, easy teens, and now they're happy men, because they always took pride in being good instead of bearing the shame of being called bad.  And I can focus my guilt on having made the older children's childhoods unhappy.

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*hugs katheliz*

I would have taken you over my real mother in any shape or form... in a New York minute. :)

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Thank you, @Metall.  But my oldest son had me pegged.  When he was seven, I said to him, 'I know I've been a crabby mother.  Would you like it better if I were your big sister?'  He answered, 'No, you'd probably just be a crabby big sister.'

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