is that memories of your own childhood come back to bite you in the butt.
Jace, my adorable, sweet, loving little boy, has recently started acting out. I’m not sure if it’s a lack of attention, if it’s middle child syndrome, or if it’s payback for the horrible child I was. Whatever it is, I need to figure out how to fix it.
Jace is 4. When I was 4, I went to a Christian preschool. I was in trouble every.single.day. I kid you not. We had these black chairs in the hallway that we had to sit in before we got spanked. (Yes, our school allowed spankings.) I spent every day in those black chairs. Sometimes, I was in them several times a day. I was bad. I had no respect for authority and wanted to do whatever I darn well pleased. I once got in trouble for duct-taping a little girl into one of those play kitchen sets while the teacher was out of the room. I can still remember the name of the little girl, too. The memory haunts me to this day. The little girl and I went to school together from preschool through 5th grade, and we were actually friends the entire time. Apparently I was angry at her that day and duct taping her into a kitchen set was the only way I could show her just how angry I was. It’s no wonder that Jace acts the way that he does. Thank GOD I home school.
Here’s the kicker: If I got spanked at school, I got spanked at home. Only, I didn’t care. I have no idea why but no form of punishment ever worked on me.
Now I’m dealing with the exact same thing with Jace. Nothing works on him. Time outs, spankings, sitting in his room, loss of toys… nothing works. I’ve taken every single toy out of the boys’ room as a punishment, and Jace doesn’t care. My gosh. How did my parents ever survive this?!
The good news is that once I started first grade, I decided I wasn’t going to get into trouble any more. At least not at school. At home, I was still a nightmare, but at school, I had all the teachers fooled that I was this sweet kid who could do no wrong. I remember in 1st grade, I actually cried the first time I got my name written on the board. (For talking, of course.) I rarely got in trouble in school, at least until high school when I was kicked out. (That’s another post for another day. Or maybe not.)
When my Daddy was sick with cancer, I actually had people tell me that it was my fault he was sick. And then when he died, they had the nerve to tell me that if I had just been a better kid, God wouldn’t have taken my Daddy from me. Now, I’m not stupid. I know that it’s not true. God had a purpose and a plan to my Daddy’s illness and his death. If he was still living, I never would have met my husband, and I wouldn’t have my 5 wonderful little monkeys. But that is honestly what people told me.
So what do I do with this child? What did my parents do with me? Well, I got spanked. A lot. I was grounded. A lot. Nothing ever really helped. I was just a bad kid. And now this grown-up bad kid is going through the exact same things with HER kids.
I can’t ask my mom for advice. She’d just laugh at me and call it payback. So, I’m coming to all of you. Any advice on what I should try?