I grew up in very small town with very small-town values. We spent every Sunday going to church and then going to my grandmothers (my kids now call her grandma mouse) sometimes after lunch all the ladies would take a walk around her neighborhood. Since we lived in West Virginia let’s just say the walks were not on flat streets at all. When I was pregnant with my first, I kept having this reoccurring dream of me, my mother, and all the ladies in the family taking a walk around my grandmothers’ neighborhood. There was always this beautiful little girl with blonde wavy hair being swung by the hands of me and my sister. Then this little girl goes running up one of the hills and out of sight. I would yell for her to come back, and mother would say to me let her go she won’t go too far away from us before she decides to come back. I could feel the anxiety in my dream but knew my mother would never steer me wrong so I would stop yelling and she would come back. I knew by these dreams I was going to have a girl and wanted nothing more.
My first child was a girl! A beautiful baby girl with blonde wavy hair at least till she got older. I want to be my daughter’s best friend and her mother, is that possible? I think about that dream often and what my mother told me in that dream. I grew up being yelled at a lot, but that was the way in my time as a child we got wippens and put in the corner and my mother had a wooden spoon we called “woody”. I can only remember a couple times I was smacked on the butt by my mother but i remember all the times I received a wippen from my father!
So, what type of mother do I want to be? do I yell at my child, or do I trust her to come back to me like she did in my dream. I have created a very open dialog with all of my children to the point then walk around my house saying “PUBERTY” and they know they can come to me with anything. I love that but the older they are getting the more I am finding that I can’t just be friends with them and have to start being stricter because they seem to think they don’t have listen to me until I start yelling like a crazy woman. When their father who has taken the more authoritarian role in our family says “put your dishes away and pick your shit up“ they literally jump right up and do it. When I tell them to do anything I get “I will” and then it never gets done.
I didn’t want my kids to grow up getting wippens and being scared of me. I want them to do what they are told to do without being yelled at. I now think that there needs to be a healthy balance of yelling and asking nicely! I have finally told them that I am not yelling because they know the rules and if they break a rule or don’t follow a rule then they know the consequences of their actions, be it a grounding or addition to their weekly chores. I feel like they understand that if I am yelling something is really wrong and they need to sit up and pay attention. I don’t want them to grow up remembering every time they were punished by their father, he shouldn’t be the only one getting the bad wrap around here and I need to step up and stop being the friend and start being the foe every once in a while, and I know that in the long run we will still be friends because My mother is my best friend now and has been for years!
As moms and dads, we want it all, we want our kids to love us and not be known as the mean mom! But that is not possible at this stage in their childhood, and we will figure out the balance and if you have read this and have figured it out plz plz write a comment below and fill us in on the secret! Keep up the good work parents, you are doing great and don’t let anyone make you feel differently. We all have our own ways of parenting and not one is better than the other.