Parenting Styles: Where I Draw the LineCasey Mullins
It happens whenever I come home from a trip away, I’m met with a dozen “new” things Vivi does, demands or requires. Cody loves both his little girls an awful lot but he is also a little guilty of being a giant sucker with both of them, especially the littlest one. Our parenting styles have always been different but they’ve almost always been complimentary. I learned with Addie that I had to enforce the rules or my life would be terrible during the 12+ hours a day Cody was nowhere to be seen. Cody on the other hand can and always has gotten away with more lenient parenting (with their own unique consequences.)
What’s funny is Cody is and always has been really strict about the girls behavior at church, whereas I take the attitude of “IT’S CHURCH! JESUS LOVES LITTLE CHILDREN! LET THEM BE FREE!”
Anyway, I walked in the door last night after nearly two weeks away (there was a three day break in there somewhere) when it started:
“Vivi will only eat cottage cheese with the silver spoon.”
“Vivi is afraid of the cat hair tumbleweeds so you have to carry her past them then clean them up.”
“Vivi will only sleep in colorful, matching jammies.”
“Vivi has to have little sips of her medicine or she won’t take it.”
“Vivi has to have all of her blankets at bedtime or she won’t sleep.”
I’ve learned just to smile and nod, then do things the way I’ve always done them. If I gave into every little whim or opinion that child has I’d never get anything done, it was the same with Addie.
Today Vivi ate cottage cheese with a plastic spoon.
I taught Vivi to growl at, then step on the cat hair tumbleweeds.
I made Vivi wear a plain white onesie to bed.
Vivi got her medicine in one swallow because it’s only a teaspoon and we have books to read.
Vivi gets bunny and blankie at bedtime, any more than that and she’ll be a crib hoarder by 3.
I have no problem appreciating the unique things that make my kids unique, but cottage cheese with a silver spoon? Ain’t nobody got time for that. I’ve also learned not to make a big deal out of the way Cody handles things when I’m away, he keeps everyone alive and happy all while supporting me in what I do AND working full time, there’s no arguing with how great he is at that.
What parenting differences do you experience in your home?
Find more of Casey’s writing on her blog moosh in indy or her Babble Voices site Shutterlovely. She’s also available on twitter, facebook, flickr and Instagram. If you can’t find her any of those places? Check the couch, she’s probably taking a nap.