I thought the age gap between my two kids would bring me and Casey a few advantages when it came to raising two kids at the same time. One of those advantages would be having a child who was practically old enough to watch herself and another of those advantages was skipping the whole I’m the boss of you phase between the two kids.
The first advantage would have come true had it not been for the complete failure of the second advantage. My kid—Addie to be specific—is caught in the middle of her I’m the boss of you phase and Vivi is the Bossee.
Growing up my family struggled severely with the I’m the boss of you complex. My older sister was usually left in charge, but I was the boy of the family and I obviously thought I was the smartest of all the kids. Nobody ever left me in charge, however, but that didn’t mean I couldn’t put myself in charge through a bit of manipulation.
My two little sisters were also around and they also wanted to change who was boss. My youngest sister was always on my side and she was usually a willing participant to help me gain control of the house. The sister just under me thought she was in charge of everyone because she was a girl and I was the only boy in the family. I think it was obvious to everyone in my family that my mom feared the trouble boys could get in and she was always dubious of all of my actions. That fear rubbed off on two of my sisters and caused me major headaches when my parents were gone.
No matter how much my older and younger sisters thought they had control of the house, however, I always had something working to undermine that control. I once incited my older sister to get so upset that she smacked me in the back. I then pretended like she broke my back and when she left the room I quickly ran and hid behind my dad’s pinball machine. There I stayed for hours. Occasionally I would flick the metal plate that was attached to the back of the pinball machine while my sister was in another part of the house causing her to think the dryer was breaking.
It amused me to listen to my sister go through her stages of panic wondering what had happened to me and how much trouble she would be in if she lost one of her siblings.
Addie has started a lot of the same stupid games I used to play and those games drive me nuts as a parent. It goes back to that whole karma and arguing thing. I argued so much with my mom about completely pointless stuff that I’m now getting payback through Addie’s arguments. Well, I caused so much trouble to my sisters that now I have to put up with Addie playing similar games with Vivi.
I was driving the family car home the other day while minding my own business in the front seat while Addie and Vivi sat in the two seats behind me. Vivi was screaming at Addie because Vivi wanted a second plastic Easter egg that had been left in the car. Addie didn’t want Vivi to have both plastic Easter eggs so Addie wouldn’t let her have the second egg. A few minutes passed and then Vivi completely lost it. I looked back at Addie and noticed she was reading a book and the second Easter egg wasn’t anywhere to be found. I asked Addie what happened to the second Easter egg and Addie told me that “Vivi doesn’t need both.”
Are you kidding me? Instead of giving Vivi the second Easter egg when she was done playing with the egg herself, Addie threw it on the floor while Vivi was watching purposely trying to upset Vivi and show her who was boss.
Yesterday Addie was drinking water out of a mug. These kids share food and water all the time. Well, Vivi wanted a drink of Addie’s water so when Addie walked away from the dinner table, Vivi reached up and grabbed Addie’s mug. Addie turned around and yanked the mug out of Vivi’s hand, and Vivi proceeded to lose it. After getting the situation under control and getting Vivi her own water cup, I noticed that Addie didn’t take a single drink out of that cup again all night. The incident happened close enough to bed time that Addie knew she wouldn’t be having any more water. But the kid has to be the boss and she had to exert her authority over Vivi for some reason–it was like it was the most important thing in the world at that moment.
All of this bossy pants crap is driving me nuts. Is this a common problem with all kids, or is this just my special payback?
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