Thursday, April 26, 2012

I Do It Backwards

I'm the mom who hates to ask my children to do something more than once. Of course, I doubt there are many parents who actually enjoy repeatedly asking their children to do something. I just refuse to do it. And the wee ones know.

It makes me cringe inside when I see parents telling their children to do something then counting. One. Twoooooooooo. Two and a half. Two and three quarters. Don't make me say thrrrreeeeeee-eeeeeee.

Either count to three or don't.

But that's beside the point. I actually don't count to three. Just like I was driven to sing the alphabet backwards to Mister Man when he was an infant to keep him content in the car (why yes, yes I can say the alphabet backwards now - I had to do something different to keep my sanity), I somehow started counting backwards for the wee ones.

Five.

Four.

And by then they're moving 95% of the time. Three.


Two. At which point my tone has gotten far deeper, if I've actually made it that far. I haven't slowed down my cadence counting. And I've only gotten to one twice. Ever. Both times, they saw me march over and compel them to do what I was asking. But even before that, they seemed to respect the counting backwards far more than they ever did when I counted forward. Whatever it is, I'm sticking with it.

And it's possible - just possible, mind you - that I accidentally counted backwards to my husband once or twice. Interestingly, it works pretty well with him, too!

What do you do to get your kids - or spouse - to listen to you?

6 comments:

Patty @ A Day in My NYC April 27, 2012 at 8:29 AM  

Will try this on my boyfriend...stat! LMAO! :)

Sandra April 27, 2012 at 5:05 PM  

I use a lot of drama and a lot of flair. Gets their attention, and works on DH, too! =)

Not a Perfect Mom April 27, 2012 at 8:38 PM  

all I have to do now is get a garbage bag and threaten to toss their prized possessions....works like a charm

Mary~Momathon April 27, 2012 at 8:41 PM  

I usually say it once, and then in an exasperated way, say something along the lines of, "ok, I know you love it when I yell or count to three or say it 16 times but I don't like to. How about if you just do it and I'll yell at you later if you want me to. I know you love it." Then, to prove me wrong, they'll do whatever it was I just told them to do.

Michelle April 30, 2012 at 11:25 PM  

Patty - Try it on someone.... let me know how it works ;)

Sandra - Ooooo, I like the drama. That I want to see in action actually.

Holly - Well yeah, there is that. I have that trick up my sleeve, too, which is a good part of the stick behind the carrot of do what I say the first time.

Mary - Yeah, my kids are perverse enough to not do that unfortunately. You're doing something right with your parenting that it works for you!

Rebecca May 2, 2012 at 7:00 AM  

hi, i just stumbled across your blog, and this post made me laugh! i'm a teacher (middle school) and backwards counting from 5 is the most effective discipline technique ever! they know i'm really pissed when i just silently hold up my hand and start folding down fingers :o) so now you have proof it will work well into early teenager-hood :o)

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