Friday, October 12, 2007

Who's the Mother here?

Yesterday, the Gingerbread Man had an evening meeting with People Who Make Pots of Money and Are Donating It For a Chaired Professorship at the University. So I had to take Samuel to cub scouts with Will in tow. We took an evening jaunt in the rain, collecting tree-related items (leaves, pinecones, etc.) for a naturalist to identify and discuss. During the discussion period, Will started wiggling in my lap. Off. On. Wiggle. Off again. I told him to settle down and he bit my hand! Not hard, but there was spit there. A story crossed my mind where one of my mother's friends used to pinch her children during church services to monitor their behavior when their father was on the stand. So I pinched Will. Not hard, but enough to send a message for him to settle down. He settled down nicely.

6 comments:

*pab said...

I am one of those people whose Grandmama would pinch us on the thigh to make us behave in church. We found it to be an ineffective device, and so did she, when we girls started wearing pantyhose (at the gentle suggestion of our dear Grandmother...so that stuff wouldn't "jiggle"...) She would try to pinch our leg, but couldn't grab any flesh because it was so tightly contained within the lycra. Giggles, including Grandmama's, ensued.

Biting: I have always heard that when a child bites, they should be bitten back, to show them the behavior is not appropriate. It does work, but you must watch for the occasional feisty child. Case in point: my dear sister and fellow WME contributor, Ashley. At age two, she bit me while we were in the bathtub. I, of course, bit her back (having been instructed to do so by our mother who was in the other room). Ashley then called me, as clear and plain as day, an "S.O.B." Given that I was much older at 5, and that I was simply repeating the offending word, I escaped the punishment of "mouthwashing with soap." Ashley did, too, sort of...she would bite down on soap as a matter of course, so she just giggled when our mother ordered her to bite down on the Ivory.

Chaotic Joy said...

When I read this I thought, Will must not be as dramatic as my child who would immediately have started shrieking in mock pain. I am glad it worked for you. :)

karen said...

You win 1 WMP for pinching your kid so effectively! I am not worthy - an occasional smack on the bottom flies with my two but I think if I tried pinching, they'd probably pinch me right back.

Chaotic Joy said...

Yeah. I agree you get a point for pinching your child. Just the fact that you risked hearing "YOU PINCHED ME!" at a scouting event, works for me.

Spice Girl said...

@pab--good thing Will wasn't wearing pantyhose!

@Joy--actually, I was rather surprised that he didn't flip. But that was, of course, the reason I did that in the first place. If I had disciplined him the way I usually do, he would have been screaming up a storm, interrupting the scout meeting, AND the church choir practicing in the next room over AND I would have had twelve fathers and two mothers looking askance at me.

@Karen--when I spank Will, he pinches me. No, he digs his little fingers into my arms and squeezes as hard as he can. Do you believe that after having seen how sweet he was at Beth's wedding? It's true.

karen said...

I've determined the best way to deflect those askance looks from other parents: find the sourest face and warmly say, "I can see by your expression that you can handle this much better than I can - please, go ahead!" The snotty observer will disappear instantly, especially if they're the type too chicken to bring their own kids out in public.