Friday, August 04, 2006

"I WANT that!"

Uh oh. I think my "payback" is starting. My mother likes to share gruesome stories of trying to take me grocery shopping while I just screamed bloody murder about all the things I wanted in the store. She would have to drag me out of the store and wrestle me in to the car, sometimes leaving one of my older siblings inside to pay for the groceries. Well, my lovely, beautiful, intelligent daughter is starting to (eek!) exhibit some of these behaviors. We walk down the isles of the grocery store while she screams "I WANT that!" and points to anything, ANYTHING!, and screams until she is distracted by something else. I'm such a push over, too. Today Iris got a hula hoop, stickers, cookies and popsicles. Now, mind you I denied her about umpteen million other things, and the items I did purchase were basically bribes. Yes, I know. It's probably mostly my fault. I'd like to be cut a bit of slack for being hugely pregnant, tired, sore and just of short temper. I decided that giving her cookies in the store is infinitely easier than wrestling her to the ground. Of course, I'm feeding the habit (so to speak) and I'm sure it won't get any easier at this point.

Oh, and while I'm at it, you know what I absolutely can't stand? Those horribly awful carts at the store that are a plastic race car with a grocery cart attached to the front. Ugh! Could they be any harder to steer or any more irrestible to children? Iris saw one when we walked in to the store and threw herself in a heap on the floor sobbing because I wouldn't let her ride in it. I can't even push the damn things when I am this big and tired. Seriously. This is where the cookie bribe came in to play.

In addition, my dear sweet daughter has become so incredibly demanding at home. She'll just stand there and scream "want more!" and EVERY time I just kind of look at her and wait to see if she'll change her tone. Then, as the screaming escalates I say "You know, I would be more than happy to help you if you use your nice voice" and then she immediately gets all sweet and quiet and says "please more!" to which I respond, "Oh, that's a nice voice! I would love to get you some more!". One would think after going through this scenario perhaps hundreds of times it would have sunk in already that she would immediately get what she needs if only she stopped screaming at me. But, alas, no. Sigh.

I just don't know what to do. It feels like I'm beating a dead horse when I say the same things to her over and over and over "please use your nice voice" or "if you throw that on the floor it's all gone".

She also is the kind of girl that has to do everything herself. This is a blessing and a curse. It comes in handy when I can't get her to do something she needs to do, like get in to the car. After asking, very nicely, once or twice, I'll say "okay, mama will help you" and she will say "NO! Icey do!" and the most of the time will immediately do it herself. I suppose the threat of mama's help is enough to make her do it? I hate "threatening" her, but in so many instances, it's the only thing that helps. Like telling her I will do it if she doesn't, or that we're going to leave the store if she keeps screaming, or I'll take her dinner away if she throws her dishes or utensils on the floor. I hate being a mama who does this. It's really tiring and only occasionally works.


  1. Sounds exactly like what EJ is going through. I don't think you're doing anything to encourage it or make it worse, I think it's just the age they are. But I do get tired of having to say, "Can you ask nicely?" over and over again. You would think ... they must have cat memories that don't last longer than 30 seconds.

  2. I prefer to think of buying things that kids ask for as simply their expressions of desire rather than bribes... lol! The way I see it is that we get to make umpteen choices daily, and children have relatively few. When I was a nanny I used to tell my kiddos that they each got to select 5 items we needed at the grocery store. It worked pretty well-- they got what they wanted and I didn't have fussy kidlets on my hands... But admittedly, they were a little older!

  3. Yeah, I sort of see it the same way. It's amazing how many times I have tell Iris no in a day. For instance, she just got up and first thing asked for a popsicle for breakfast (which, suprisingly, I have NEVER given her!). So starts the day of "no!". It's nice to find things that aren't hard to say "yes!" to.
    I suppose denying her every single thing won't necessarily raise a more well-behaved child :)


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