Thursday, May 24, 2012

Mean Mommy

At a certain point in some conversations, Mean Mommy kicks in. Allow me to illustrate:

Child: Will you take me to the carnival all four nights?
Me: Nope.
Child: Will you take me two nights? or three?
Me: Nope. We are going one night and that is it.
Child: (aghast) We can't just go one night!!!!
Me: Yup.
Child: That's so mean! I want to go every night! etc, etc
Me: You're lucky to be going at all.
Child: That's so unfair!

Now, this is when Mean Mommy kicks in

Me: Another word, and we will not go to the carnival. We will stay home every night.
(Child opens mouth to retort)
Me: I said not another word. 
(Child closes mouth.)

Now, I'm not so naive to think that this ends the matter. I know the subject will arise again, and with more scowls and grumps on her side, I can just picture the boo lip now, and more threats and Meanness on my side.
Who teaches them to do this?

The facts remain. That carnival is bloody expensive, and it is loud, and rude teenagers arrive after 8 PM, and I have to pawn my jewelry to buy food, and the rides make weird creaking sounds as the kids go on them. But I understand that it is the most important social event of the kid year, a sort of 7-year-old version of the prom, so I will take her.



Unknown said...

Me to H.S. class who is whining that I won't delay a test, "Hey, if you say no to your parents, do THEY cave?"
Class, "Yes."
Me, almost silence stricken, "Well, I'm not your parents."
Good for you!

Lisa J Yarde said...

Alison, I love this! Having watched my sister pull "Mean Mommy" on her kids this past weekend, I am completely sympathetic and understanding of both your plights. I can also tell I will be going Mean Mommy route myself if / when I have kids. Discussions with the nephews often devolve into -

Me: What did Mom / Dad say when you asked?
Kids: No, but....
Me: So, why exactly are we having the discussion now?
Kids: Aww, no fair!

SM Johnson said...

Mean Mommy at our house says... "No. The End."

(and gets the boo-hoo face). But Sprite knows there's no arguing when writer-mom says The End.

I feel about carnivals like you do. So far we have managed to avoid the Disney theme park experience - the whole thing seems like my personal version of Hell.

jenny milchman said...

Personally I think that makes you Nice Mommy. I just don't take 'em at all.

No wire hangers!!!

Peter Johnstone said...

We have twins. We made a decision very early on that No was No and that we backed each other to the hilt. Otherwise we'd have two of them giving it big lip and nagging. Any other way would just lead to disaster. I don't want tos sound smug (but i will) but I have to say that, when i see other kids screaming "but i WANT one" over and over and over, i quietly congratulate myself.

Alison DeLuca said...

Well done! It's so hard at first, but the Firm investment really pays off in the end.

And you deserve to be smug. Good for you!

Anonymous said...

You might get a chuckle out of this picture book too: