Parenthood and discipline. It's a war zone!

Every morning is like a lucky packet (if you remember those)... you simply just don't know what you're going to get. Will it be peace and harmony in the Pilgrim household or will it be a shit storm like never before.

My 5 year old is going through a defiant stage. Everything has a condition or rule attached. Want her to brush her teeth? She says wait 1 minute, or she wants to do something first (like crawl towards the bathroom on her stomach pretending to be a snail).

If I had hair I would pull it out. There's two ways of handling the situation. Threat of punishment or promise of reward. The option we try is dependent on our mood at the time of the crime.

Punishment involves no television. Tayla-Jean doesn't care. It also means she has to sleep in her own room (she likes sleeping with her sister). There's no sweets over the next 24 hours. She handles it in her stride. And then noodles are placed in the "sad jar". Ironically this affects her more than the sugar ban.

Then there's positive reinforcement. The allure of a pretty dress at the end of the week if she doesn't bounce off the walls when it's bed time. The promise of a milkshake if she's polite and says "please" and "thank you".

There are a multitude of books dealing with defiant kids. Sometimes though I think us parents have to realise it's just part of growing up. You have to just get in the trenches and deal with it. There'll be days when I feel like the dad from Bob Carlisle's song "Butterfly kisses", and then there's days I feel more like I'm a hostage negotiator from the movie "White House Down".

Parenthood. Not for sissies.

Onto other news. If you're in the Johannesburg North area, there's a new "after-work" venue called The Windjammer (3 Blueberry Road, Honeydew). This coming Friday I'll be playing some of your fav tunes and also the band Brent Harris (Just Jinger) And Thee Jam with be playing too. It all kicks off about 6pm. Hope to see you there!


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