Are Parents Allowed to Throw Tantrums?Ellen Seidman
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1: Bedtime delay tactics
The moment when you have just said, for the tenth time, "OK, it's bedtime," and your child whines piteously, for the tenth time, "Just five more minutes?"
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2: Utterly irrational child freakouts that make you lose it, too
AAAAAAAAAH, you let Max touch my markers! I saw him touch them! And now he touched them! Now what am I gonna do? He touched them! He touched them! WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH .
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3: That utterly maddening Daddy defense play
When your child asks for, say, ice cream right before dinner. And you say, firmly, "No, honey. We don't eat ice cream before dinner." And then your child wanders off and comes back five minutes later and says, matter-of-factly, "Daddy says I can have ice cream!" Aaaargh, Marshmallow Daddy!
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4: Dealing with the medical bills
You to insurance company rep: "I am not sure why I owe a co-pay of $20,000 for my son's strep test."
Rep: "You will have to speak with the billing department in the doctor's office.
You to the doctor's office billing department staffer: "I am not sure why Im supposed fork up a co-pay of $20,000 for a strep test."
Staffer: "The insurance company seems to have made a mistake, you will have to call them."
You: [pulling hair out].
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5: A space invader situation
Youre taking a bath (a momentous occasion). You are actually — alert the press! — relaxing. And then: BANG! BANG! BANG! It sounds like a battering ram against the bathroom door, but it is only your little darling knocking. And she wants to know where that Goofy pin she got at Disney World two years ago is, because it is vital to her existence. And you tell her. A few minutes later: BANG! BANG! BANG! This time, she wants to know when you will be going back to Disney World to get more pins. And you say, Soon, honey! Right now, though, Mommys taking a bath. And 2.5 minutes later: BANG! BANG! BANG! [Repeat 'til you give up and abandon the tub.]
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6: Toilet bowl tragedies
"Sweetie, have you seen Mommy's new tourmaline curling iron? Why is the bathroom door open? OH. MY. GOD. WHAT IS THAT IN THE TOILET?"
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7: The housecleaning hissy fit
You have just mopped the entire kitchen floor. Your darling children and darling husband barge in the back door and proceed to trek across the floor in their shoes, leaving clumps of dirt and leaves everywhere. GUYS!!! I JUST WASHED THE FLOOR! you screech, with an eruptive force worthy of Mt. Vesuvius. They stare at you as if you are certifiably crazy. This is because, as far as they know, the floor magically cleans itself.
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8: Breastfeeding-commando confrontations
Anytime you are nursing in a restaurant/at the mall/in the airport lounge/wherever and some manager or security person utters the words Excuse me, maam, that isnt permitted here. And then you squirt him in the eye! (OK, in your dreams you do.)
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9: Babysitter Daddy gone bad
When you get a rare weekend afternoon out with friends and come home to find your husband asleep in front of the TV, the Spike channel on full blast, both kids nibbling on crayons.
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10: Random acts of poop
After months of being in a newborn fog, you have finally dressed like an actual human being — read, a nice top and pants that do not have a single breastmilk stain — and ventured out to the mall with your tot. But wait! Whats that smell? And what is that brown stuff seeping all over the back of his onesie? You book it to the restroom. Happily, you have brought an extra onesie. Youre so smart! You change Baby and head toward Banana Republic. But wait? Whats that smell? And what is that brown stuff all over the underside of your sleeve? Ugh. Sadly, you have not brought a change of clothes for you. Home you go.
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11: Five words
No haircut! Bad man! No!
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12: That I've-got-a-mommy-body meltdown
This is the instance when, going through your closet, your eyes fall on that pile of jeans you were saving to fit into again. Only its been five years since you had your last kid, and you realize that the mommy gut/thighs/butt might be here to stay. And you scream a silent scream. And then you slip on your yoga pants.
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13: 6:00 p.m. work sabotage!
If youre a working mom, its the scenario you dread: Your boss swinging by to discuss a project at 6:00 p.m., just as you are about to dash out of the office to make it home in time to see your kids to bed. You are amazed steam is not shooting out of your head as he blah-blah-blahs away. Evidently, he did not get the memo that you have a life.
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14: Pileups of disaster
The dog has left a deposit in the hallway, which you discovered because you stepped in it and left poop tracks. Your tot has somehow gotten her hands on the cereal box and poured it into every possible crevice of your couch. The phone rings, and it is your babysitter cancelling for this evening, your date night. What have you done to deserve this? And why did you decide to become a parent, anyway? All together now: Aaaaaargh!
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15: Backseat whining
Youre driving with the kids in sleet, rain, PMS, whatever. The children are safe and snug in their car seats, only they will not stop whining-fighting. He kicked me! I dont wanna go to the store! When are you getting me those sneakers, Mommmmmy? You proooooomised me those sneakers and you never got them for me! He kicked me! You are silent until finally you hiss, in your most deadly Mommy voice, I am going to get into an accident if you kids dont quiet down. Which quiets them for ten seconds.
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