Monday, February 27, 2006

Mean Mom Strikes Again

I woke Shandy up at the usual 6:00am. She finally rolls out of bed close to 6:55am. Her bus comes just before 7:15am. Starting at 7:00am, she starts asking me about getting a ride to school. I let her know in no uncertain terms that I am not going to give her a ride, that she knows if she misses the bus, she gets to walk to school. She doesn't say anything else to me until after 7:15, when she does actually miss the bus.

Then the bargaining phase begins. "I'll do the dishes when I get home." "I'll wash the kitchen floor." "I'll clean the family room." "I'll clean the family room, the kitchen, and the front room." "Just tell me what you want me to do!"

"Shandy, what I want you to do is start walking to school."

"Mooooooooommmmm!!!! I can't be late!"

Ummmm... guess what, Shandy? I need to be on time for work, too. And I've been late to work over 10 times in the past 2 months because I've taken you to school due to you missing the bus. The last 5 times I agreed to the bargaining terms set out, and the last 3 of those times, you didn't fulfill your end of the bargain.

The lying starts. "Today is the orchestra tour. I'll miss the bus if I'm not on time!" I look at her and respond with, "Well, maybe you should have thought of that at 6am this morning when I woke you up." "But I didn't hear you wake me up this morning!" :::sigh::: "Shandy, we held a short conversation this morning after I woke you up."

Anger phase: "Fine! I'd rather stay home today than walk to school and deal with this!" as she yells and stomps down the hall. "So you're choosing to sluff school today, then?" I call after her.

Begging phase: "PLEASE!!! My knee hurts from paintballing this weekend, and I don't want to walk to school on it! I'll do *anything* if you'll just take me this morning!"

Guilt trip phase: "Why won't you do this? Why are you so horrible and mean? Why won't you at least let me pay for the gas like Mrs. Jones does for her boys when they miss the bus? Why won't you give me just one more chance? I promise it will NEVER happen again!" (The last two sentences are repeats of the past 5+ times she missed the bus.)

I sigh as I'm getting in the car to leave. "Shandy.... I am tired of having to be the one to bail you out because you choose to make poor time choices."

Parting shot: "But you're my MOM!" And the door slams.

Yes, Shandy... I *am* your mom. And as your mom, I want you to learn personal responsiblity for your actions. I want you to learn that every action (or inaction) has a consequence attached, either good or bad. I want you to learn how to be a good, functioning young adult who doesn't expect the world to cater to them and then be surprised when life doesn't work that way.

In other words, I love you. I want what is best for you. I hope someday you can see that.

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