This could possibly be the line of the century uttered on the “Opie and Anthony Show.” Opie wasn’t talking about smacking a kid around for discipline’s sake, but rather restraining yourself from slapping them when they get on your nerves. I know, I know it is incredibly cliche to say “I used to say I would never hit my kids. Until I became a parent,” but my kids are driving me nuts, and I have to talk about this with someone. Preferably people who understand a Chip reference, but that is a story for another time. Whether you use spanking as your form of discipline or not, you have to admit your kids act up once and awhile and you want to smack ’em in the face. I’m somewhat new to this parenting thing (my kids are only 2 and 3) and I just have to say that the age 3 stage sucks ass. Don’t get me wrong, my daughter has some of the best qualities. She is affectionate, independent, nurturing, energetic, strange, focused, beautiful, and daring. But she also has some horrible qualities. Mostly from me but that is besides the point. She can be angry, defiant, stubborn, unreasonable, annoying, repetitive, and exhausting. Granted these bad qualities are possessed by most 3 year olds, but it is still emotionally exhausting, especially when you’re stuck babysitting them all day.
- Here is the angel/devil. Depending on the day
After a year or so of parenting you realize exactly why parents hit their kids. Let’s face it, kids are annoying, trying, and frustrating. They don’t like broccoli even though they ate a whole plateful of it the last time it was served. They want to watch Dora instead of Diego even though it’s the same fucking show. They don’t understand why they can’t wear a sundress in the middle of January in Wisconsin. I will admit that I have lost my cool and smacked my kid. She threw a gigantic tantrum coming home from the park, and I had to drag her 5 blocks because she refused to walk, ride in the stroller, or be carried. I finally got home and tried to disciple her. She back talked, and I snapped and smacked her in the face. The moment you hit your child is the worst feeling on the planet. You feel instant remorse and freak out. You don’t want your child’s first memory of you to be of you losing your cool. You flash forward 20 years and visualize them on a therapist’s couch retelling the story of how her bitch of a mother slapped her face when she was 2. It is truly terrifying. But then you apologize, and (sometimes) they are cool 3 seconds later playing and chilling out. The resilience of children is truly amazing. You realize that you will work through this and try to make it up to them the best you can.
I suppose this is the place where I should offer some advice about what to do when they are acting like total cunts. The truth is I have no damn clue. Ok I have a little bit of a clue but as my kids are only 2 and 3 I don’t feel like I have enough experience for people to actually use my advice. I guess my biggest piece of advice is don’t be too hard on yourself. Everyone has moments where they lose their cool and your kids might freak out, but they will forgive you. I know I always feel like a piece of shit if I lose my cool and scream or throw something. But then I came across this story. Now these people are pieces of shit and abusers. Losing your cool and hitting your kids once every 6 months to a year does not make you a bad parent. Spanking is always a hot button issue with parents. I personally don’t spank my kids, just the occasional lose your cool moment. We use the naughty chair technique, praise, and rewards. What’s the favored means of discipline amongst all you pests? Have you ever lost your cool with your kids?