Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde…

Have come home to roost inside my daughter.

Yes, the child who so lovingly embraced sisterhood, who loves to hold and sing to her brother, and is “so happy” to have him here, is at times replaced with a screaming, stomping, crying psychopath.

For example, “The one with the messy room”:
I asked Marlena to pick up her disaster of a bedroom, to put some toys away and throw out some trash. Basically clean it enough for me to vacuum and pack some of her stuff. All day yesterday she didn’t do it. Now, to be fair, she had friends over for a good portion of the day, during which I did not expect her to clean. However, the time before and the time after was intended as cleaning time. Instead, she spent the time in her room drawing line after wavy line in a notebook.
I came into her room with some boxes and packed up some toys and books around the mess. Then I told her to clean her room. When I came back in to check on her, she was once again drawing wavy lines in a notebook.
Last night I informed her that she needed to clean her room today. She went to bed with a massive crying screaming fit about how poorly she brushes her teeth and how she is going to start brushing them for six minutes every morning.
This morning she asked for TV with breakfast and I reminded her about the loss of TV caused by last night’s massive screaming fit. After breakfast I told her to clean her room. She whined about not wanting to. I explained that I had already spent an hour in there last night, and that now it is her turn. She started yelling.
Now here is the clincher, I am keeping Hannah and Simon overnight tonight for Ellen and Dan. It is not the type of overnight you can cancel. So while I would normally just say, you can’t have your overnight if your room isnt clean, I can’t.
So instead I tell her that I will clean her room by throwing everything on the floor into the garbage. She begins to scream.
Finally I tell her, I may not be able to cancel the overnight, but I can ground her and let her friends have a movie and such without her.
None of it had any effect on her. When I left her in her room she was screaming about a new deal, how she wasn’t going to clean her room, etc.
Ugh, Where did I get this explosive maniac?
Finally, after calling Lee in desperation and having his help climbing down off my ledge, I calmed her a little, gave her a CD to listen to, and told her there would be no further negotiations until the room was clean. THEN, and only then, would we talk.

Boy, there is not enough alcohol in good parenting.

3 thoughts on “”

  1. I feel you, sister!

    Of course, I waited for Caitlin to leave town for the Big Clean, but little cleans happen without quite as much trauma as you experienced.


    Of course, I am having no alcohol, but one day…one day I will have a mojito for surviving twin pregnancy and you’ll be there for it!

  2. Hang in there, sweetie. Miss Bear is practicing for the teen years, and, by the sound of it, doing a pretty good job. One suggestion: Flylady has a set-up for kids. Something about fairies, I think. There’ve been numerous testimonials about the effectiveness of it in terms of getting kids off their kiesters to clean their rooms, some kind of reward structure. Might help. In the meantime, you went through the same awful stage & I still love(d) you. And headed for the alcohol upon occasion. Hugs.

  3. It would be superfluous and unkind to remind you of the many times we went through this very same scene with you. Of course, if my Mom was still alive she’d say she suffered through the same with me and that your own tantrums were just retribution for my sins.
    You are simply reaching that point of parenthood when “BECAUSE I SAID SO, THAT’S WHY!” seems to rise to almost Cartesian standards of logic. Don’t let it get to you, daughters are a lot easier to deal with after they turn 30.

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