Backroads

Concerning child discipline

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Husband and I are not particularly interesting regarding disciplining our kids. The 4-year-old is on the path of learning the rules and norms of society, the 20-month-old gets told "no-no!" from time to time. While we're not opposed to spanking, most of our discipline revolves around very specific modeling and consequences.

My mother hates it. We can't discipline our kids in front of her without getting an earful later about how mean we are to her precious granddaughter. This is not a frequent thing as 4-year-old is a pretty good kid, but she is can be a stinker. We're just trying to get her going right. She doesn't follow instructions in boldness, she gets a consequence such as being removed from said activity for a short time. It all seems to be what the other parents are doing, what the occasional parenting article says, what the old hippy daycare lady preached and what the more recent Mexican-Catholic retired teacher daycare lady supports (though both of those ladies are anti-spanking, which is fine.)

But should this ever happen in front of my mother, if not a direct speech, I get emails and texts about how mean we are, how she is only a little girl, how we need to figure out something else because she doesn't like seeing her granddaughter sad.

This has only happened a handful of times over the course of my daughter's lifespan, but my mother's complaints really get to me to the point I dread my daughter acting up in front of my mother to the point I would have to drag her aside and hear how I'm a bad mom.

See, my mother is very bold and says what's on her mind.

But what also gets to me is growing up, my mom often complained about the nasty undisciplined brats around whose parents were all too sweet to them and never laid down the law. Then she becomes a grandmother and doesn't want any discipline near them.

Specifically, we returned from a family trip where we went to the lake. Daughter went out in the lake past where Husband and I felt was safe. When she did not listen when we told her to return, she had to sit on the beach for a few minutes whilst we explained water safety and listening to her parents.

My mom had blew up. Doesn't matter Husband had a sibling drown years ago, we have no right to make Daughter leave the water.

I have a couple of questions: Are we wrong in our discipline approach? Where do we draw the line with my mother while still maintaining familial goodwill?

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One lesson I learned about parenting: I'm the parent and not anyone else.  If I want other's advice, I will ask for it.  But other than that "quit trying to backseat drive!".  My mom (who's a complete helicopter parent/grandparent) doesn't like being told this at all, but my duty has a parent trumps her complaints.  She can just deal with it.

What you're describing here sounds 100% reasonable.  You sound like a great mom actually. 

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WHen I started my current job. One of my colleagues told me that ocassionally, I would have to pull a hissy fit in order to get the bureaucrats to listen. Well I had to do this with a colleague as she was cheating vulnerable people out of their wages. I slammed doors and yelled till the situation was resolved.

Tell your mother that if she ever tells you how to discipline your kids again, you take her purse to the front door and fling it into the street. You will then  lock the door while she retrieves her purse and she can then take a cab home. You will then screen your calls and block her emails until you get an abject apology.

 Suggest that you start with an email in all caps and if she gives you any lip threaten her with a hairbrush (my mother used to spank me with a hairbrush and then books after she broke the hairbrushes).

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46 minutes ago, Sunday21 said:

WHen I started my current job. One of my colleagues told me that ocassionally, I would have to pull a hissy fit in order to get the bureaucrats to listen. Well I had to do this with a colleague as she was cheating vulnerable people out of their wages. I slammed doors and yelled till the situation was resolved.

Tell your mother that if she ever tells you how to discipline your kids again, you take her purse to the front door and fling it into the street. You will then  lock the door while she retrieves her purse and she can then take a cab home. You will then screen your calls and block her emails until you get an abject apology.

 Suggest that you start with an email in all caps and if she gives you any lip threaten her with a hairbrush (my mother used to spank me with a hairbrush and then books after she broke the hairbrushes).

That might be a bit intense for my mother (plus no cabs in our area). But thank-you for the passion!

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@Backroads your parenting sounds reasonable. Your mom isn't the one who has to deal with the repercussions of poorly disciplined children  daily like you are with your own kids. It could absolutely be worth setting some boundaries with your mom. 

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Spirit Dragon says much here, and yes, setting some boundaries with Mom is very appropriate at this juncture. If Mom wants to act like a two year old, treat her like one! End the conversations with her, take away her prized possession! Your reaction. 

 

My eldest son often wonders why I have no comment when he has behavioral issues with my 5 year old grandson. I just smile and reply "It's not my dance". *Shrug* I've still got a 13 year old to finish raising, I think my 29 year old is big boy enough to figure his boy out on his own. Payback, mister! 

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On 7/10/2017 at 10:53 PM, SpiritDragon said:

@Sunday21 the hairbrush sounds firm, but effective. I made the mistake of giggling while my mom spanked me with her hand, and from then on I got the wooden spoon or the belt :yikes:

Oooooh! You grew up old school too! There wasn't any of that CPS silliness when I was a kid, when we stepped in the muck, we got thumped, bumped, switched, spooned, belted, butts knocked off the porch, AND had to chew on dial soap for having a smart or foul mouth. As a kid, if you called the cops, they would help your parents whoop ya. Probably why I still say Sir and Ma'am.  Funny enough, if you discipline your kids now like that, they put you in jail, later on, they put your kids in jail because they do things they should not ought to do.  Strange days we live in. 

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