Thursday, September 1, 2011

Stress while at home

Those of us who homeschool know what I am talking about. Being at home with my kids is amazing and I absolutely LOVE learning from them and watching them learn as well. I love knowing what they're doing in school and being so involved in their lives. However, that also means that I get no break! I know, it sounds horrible that I would like a break from my children but occasionally, I think it would be nice. Some days my children just don't want to listen to me.
I grew up thinking I was patient. It was one of my talents and everyone praised me and my patience. Even my mom when I was a teenager. That's saying something, right? Well, then I became a mom and I realized that I really have very little patience. My kids, especially my 3 year old, do not like to obey. They say don't count so I try not to count but often I find myself counting anyways b/c I get an immediate response from them. Professionals tell you not to bribe. I offer fake money for good behavior. Professionals tell us not to yell. Well, occasionally I do yell. I really don't yell often but sometimes the kids are just pushing the right buttons and there is nothing left but anger. It has all been held out for so long that I turn into this evil monster who scares my children. They don't understand why I'm yelling but they fear the anger and immediately obey but then I feel terrible and cry and apologize and feel like an idiot and a failure at motherhood. The professionals also always remind us to follow through. I will admit, this is one thing I am good at. I always follow through on my discipline and make sure my hubby does too. If I tell them that if they don't clean up then I'm trashing their toys then I trash their toys when they don't clean up. Well, sometimes I send it to Goodwill but either way my kids don't get it anymore.
So, how do I make my kids obey so I don't have to respond this way? How do I get a break so that there is nothing left in me to give? Not homeschooling is not an option. I don't want to hand over my children's bad habits to someone else. I want to fix them myself but how? How do I get my 3 yo to just obey me b/c she wants to? I wish there was a manual or something but unfortunately, all children all different -- of course, this is fortunate as well. I sure wouldn't want my kids to be like everyone else.
So, homeschooling moms... in your experience, what is a good way to give yourself a break so you can be a better mom?


alecia said...

Well, I'm new at this, too, but I am hoping that it is just a 3 yo thing. I find myself counting SOOOO much lately. When I find myself losing (or having lost) my patience, I say, "time for quiet time. If you want to have a nice mommy, then you go to your room and listen to scripture scouts." And then I take a deep breath... Can't wait to hear what others say here!

Emily said...

I'm in the same boat as well, only DD is 7. She doesn't like to do her chores and complains a lot. She knows I can't stand the whining and some days I think she does it just because of that! When she was younger (like 3 or 4) I would have her sit in the living room and watch a Disney movie while I cool down, call a friend, whatever I had to do to return to her mommy rather than a roaring monster who loves counting! Now it's a warning, 'you are pushing my buttons and making me angry, can you please do as you're asked while I cool down!?', usually I get an 'OK, sorry mommy.'