Thursday, April 5, 2012

Feeling like a failure

I've had a rough couple days with my oldest daughter (8 years old) :( It seem I can't get her to do what she is told, EVER! When I ask her to clean the toys etc. in the living room at the end of the day it seems that a 10 minute job turns into 3 days! I have to admit that much of it is my fault. I haven't done the best job in training her I guess and the TV is almost always on. Big distraction!

My husband was away on business and I was at the end of my rope.  I had to run to my room to cry just like a little baby. (This is where the depression kicks in big time). I get so overwhelmed and frustrated that I have to walk away from the situation and regroup. It's times like this that I feel like a failure as a mom. What am I doing that is so wrong?

When I returned, I unplugged the television and took away her DS and told her that she gets nothing back until she learns to do AS she's told, WHEN she's told. She wasn't pleased, and ended up in her room until it was time to leave for her swimming lessons later that evening.

An hour later, her Dad returned from his trip and I threw my arms around him and poured my heart out to him with all my frustrations. Poor guy wasn't even through the door yet.

So, fast forward to this morning. It's amazing how much more calm and quiet it is in the house today. Less fighting and screaming between the girls and some schoolwork is ACTUALLY getting done!

I always knew that having the TV on wasn't the greatest idea, especially when my oldest is working on her schoolwork in the next room. It just seemed to be the easiest way to keep my youngest entertained, I thought, while I helped my other daughter with her lessons.

But the little sweetheart, right now, is sitting on the living room floor playing nicely with her toys. I guess I was wrong. From now on the TV is OFF until almost dinner time. And ONLY if they've tidied up FIRST.

Why did it take me soooo long to figure this out! Now, I just have to make sure I stick to it. That'll surely be the hard part.

So, tell me, what are your rules regarding TV time. And how do you get your kids to learn to do AS they are told WHEN they are told? And when they DON'T listen, how do you punish and/or correct them? I'd love to hear your comments and ideas.

Thanks for listening,



  1. I can't get my kids to do anything with the tv on either, i have learned it has to go off and they get special tv watching time.

  2. This is such a hard lesson to learn and one that I haven't learned completely either. I sometimes try to convince myself that educational TV is okay, but true interaction with children is always best and leaving them to play on their own promotes creativity. We only have to seek to do what we can with what we know and when we know better then we can do better. I'm quite sure that you are a loving and caring and nurturing mommy...or this wouldn't affect you as much as it has. Keep your chin up and know that you have TONS of support in your new bloggy friends!! HUGS!!

  3. Despite having satellite and three TVs in our home, we don't watch very much. I turn it on in the morning to catch the weather, and then it is off until the evening. If it is raining during the day, we'll watch a movie/educational show as a "treat".

    We play music all day instead. Whatever is on my iPod - I set it to shuffle. On Tuesday, we heard the Nutcracker Suite!

    As a child, my parents didn't have the TV on much either. In my husband's family it was on from morning till night. It has been tough to get my husband "on board" that the TV doesn't need to be on all day!

  4. I stopped by here as well as liked you on facebook and followed you on Network Blogs. Make sure to come by today and link up your blog to the Blog Hop going on!!

  5. Hi Jennifer,

    I'm stopping in from the MMM Hop!

    My heart just aches for you because I know exactly what you mean. My daughter just turned 9. I don't know if you give your kids allowance, but in our house, their allowance is tied to their chores. They have a list of chores that they must get done (some of them are daily chores, like making their bed, putting their clothes and toys away, feeding the cats, etc. and some are weekly like dusting their room, bringing down their garbage on garbage day, etc.)

    If they don't do one of their chores (I ask once, they get one reminder and that's it), then I dock them pay (25 cents) out of their weekly allowance.

    All that being said, I think what is important is consistency, clearly understood rules, and I think most importantly for that particular age group, is giving them some control. So, I let my daughter decide WHEN she can do those things. That can be a bit risky because they can run out of time in the day, but they learn quickly when they start losing money.

    I just find that for my daughter at least, she needs to know what is expected of her but also that she has some control of things in her life.

    Good luck and as with most things in life, this too shall pass. Hugs, Renee

  6. I feel for you! I have days like this, and my daughter is only 18 months old! Her dad works out of state for weeks at a time, so I call him bawling my eyes out sometimes.

    I hope things get better! Following you from MMM hop. Mommy of One and Counting

  7. Hi! I found you through the Make My Morning Blog Hop. I'm also a homeschooling mom and have a child with special needs. That portion of my blogging life is at - come by and join us.

    Then I also just started a 2nd blog & you may be interested in that - - less about the homeschool/specialneeds/parenting stuff and more about finding joy in the everyday stuff!

    I completely understand what you're going through - my almost-12-year old is currently giving me a run for my money & I'm cutting things out left & right. Feel like an awful mom, BUT he has to get things accomplished and he has to know there are boundaries. Hang in there! We'll stick together!

  8. I am a veteran homeschool mom, and I know how infuriating it can be. Taking things away from them, tv and video games, work the best. Make them do extra chores. Dad does need to back you up. Now mostly with my last one, out of six, all I have to say is, "Do you want me to tell Dad?" That will usually get him doing his work better.

    New follower: Facebook, Networked blogs, Google Reader, GFC. Come follow me back at Royalegacy Reviews and More

    Good luck! I hope you make it all the way through. You will have fun, and your child will be a great adult. I love how my kids are not clones of society.

  9. For me it is all about scheduling and being consistent. They know what the rules are and they understand their individual jobs within the family. I don't give my children money, but there are definite rewards for their pitching in to help out and they look forward to the fun and varied rewards we come up with together.

    It sounds like the tv off rule is working for you. Follow your instincts they won't lead you astray.

  10. Hey, I found you from the Bloggy moms Apr. blog hop. We keep the t.v. off always. Well, we permit 1.5-2 hours/week, but that's usually a movie on the weekend. Our trouble comes from the apathy of the 6 yo when it comes to math. What kills me is that he's actually really good at it! Grr! Any ideas? Stop by my blog, please!
    Keep your chin up!

    Kind Regards,
    Play {with Purpose}

  11. Maybe math just bores him BECAUSE he's so good at it. Maybe you need to Google some math games and make it more fun for him. How about a math treasure hunt. When he gets a problem correct, he gets a clue to where the next problem is hidden and on and on. Then when he gets to the last one he finds a small prize. Actually, I think I might try that! Never thought of it before and it sounds like fun! LOL.

    I took a quick look at your blog. Awesome. Going to have to spend some time and go through it all. Looks like a great resource. Thanks:)

  12. You are a fabulous writer! Looking forward to keeping up with your posts! New follower! Would love for you to follow me too!

  13. I am also bad about the TV. I'll be the first to admit I am addicted to the TV. I don't know why but even if I'm not watching it I like to have it on for the noise. My girls watch some TV but I'm trying to start getting into the habit of turning it off more often. This post gave me some more motivation. FYI-Your not a bad mom b/c you have to take a moment. I take moments because it is hard being home all day by yourself with knee high bosses. They are way tougher than any other boss I've had! Great post!

  14. My son gets to watch some in the morning when I take a shower and a little later on. It is the iPad he really wants to use.

  15. OMG, did I write this post?! Seriously....almost to a T!

    I used to be VERY strict with tv watching, but over the past 7 years, I have let it go. The kids watch tv when they want, but in my opinion, it isn't too much. Does that make sense?

    Good luck!

  16. we don't homeschool so our home life is different from yours. our tv rules are "no tv until homework is done" and that works for us. summer is coming up soon and that rule will be gone and the tv will be on most of the time i am afraid. your post is helping me to see that maybe we need a new schedule this summer. maybe a "no tv until ... " thanks for posting and making me think today!

  17. I do notice a change in my daughter when she watches too much tv. It's better to let her play with her toys and play outside. She's in such a better mood when I can make sure she does that. I don't know how she'll be when she's 8 but right now she's 3 and "clean up your room then you can watch tv," works like a charm with her. It's hard when you're tired to be firm and set the limits, but if I have a bad day I always remind myself that tomorrow is a new day and I can do better then. :)


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