I don’t know what  ‘normal’ is anymore.

On days like today I’ve lost my patience and feel like I’ve run out of options.  Hearing your children fight and argue constantly is one thing but also being completely ignored EVERY time you talk to them?? Ugh, it get’s right under my skin and makes me want to yank my hair out… literally

It’s not for lack of trying though, let me tell you… I have taken my fair share of “independent children” workshops, child development courses and read numerous books on the subject. I have been there done that when it comes to tips and tools of the trade… nothing works.

He goes through this phase where he tunes EVERYTHING I say to him out. I feel like it’s normal because Haylee does the same thing at times, but for whatever reason what she does seems much more intentional and defiant and I tend to have more patients and creativity when it comes to issuing a consequence.  When Kaelob does it I go bonkers because I cant decide if he’s doing it intentionally or really honestly just tuned me out two words into my direction and is really truly confused….If I punish him and he really is confused I risk pushing us back a million steps from where we have worked so hard to get to. I live every day with the fear that I will yell at him for something or punish him for something that will undo everything we have worked so hard to accomplish in the last 4 and a half years.

But then, what do i do besides literally pull my hair out when I try to look him in the eyes, make him repeat what Ive said to him, ask him to tell me again what it is I have asked him to do or the directions I just gave him… directly after he can usually repeat what Ive said, or in some cases even then he’s already forgotten. What more can I do??

Example: I pulled him aside one night and needed something from the freezer down in the chicken shed.I asked him if he could do me a favor and he jumped up happily, eager to be a big helper. I gave him very specific directions telling him where the gallon of milk was that I needed and although he didn’t give me eye contact (despite my indirect attempts to gain it) He repeated what it was he was doing for me before hopping out the front door. He skipped down the stepping stones outside, swatted at the tree a couple times with a stick and then skipped the rest of the way down to the shed. I watched as he opened the door and walked in and then nothing.  I waited, still nothing.  I yelled out the window asking if he was okay and he yelled back that he couldnt find it. I tried to yell down to him my repeated instructions of exactly where it was but I heard him growling with frustration. I told him to just come back up to the house and I would take care of it.  When he came through the front door he was angry and frustrated, “I forgot what I was getting” he told me when I asked why he couldn’t find it.

I just dont understand how much more specific I could be. HERE is your item you are getting and HERE is exactly where it will be, ready GO…. but thats not how it works in our house.

OR this morning… He had left his shoes in the car but our big fight with him is wearing socks with his shoes. hes never liked wearing socks, but MAN he has the nastiest smelling feet, so we enforce it as best we can.  He reluctantly helped me find two socks in his clothes pile in his room and as we were walking together up the hallway to the living room I specifically told him that I wanted him to wait to put his socks on until after we were in the car that way they wouldnt get dirty, and asked him to turn the TV off so we could head out now. He said okay but I was behind him in the hallway so I didnt see his face… I should have known.

I stepped into the kitchen to pour my coffee one second and when I stepped back out I see Kaelob sitting in front of the TV- watching it and putting his socks on!!!!

I just wanted to explode.

I did explode.

Seems like a simple stupid thing to get upset over… but THIS happens ALL THE TIME.

its “Normal”.

What is normal for your family?

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