I don’t make it any secret that Gus is not the most well behaved kid on the planet. If there was a competition for the best disciplined child, let’s just say he would not be bringing home any gold medals. Just when I think we are moving past the phase that I like to call “turning into the devil,” I find myself standing over him while he kicks and screams with yet another mind blowing tantrum. The most recent one happened to occur at the gym where my husband trains. As if this wasn’t bad enough already, he did the face plant right at the front desk in front of everyone. Needless to say, I was mortified.
I was talking to my best friend about it yesterday. And by talking, I mean saying things about my kid that I never thought would come out of my mouth. But, he can be so FRUSTRATING. Anyway, she asked an interesting question.
“What does he do when Yancy disciplines him?”
For those of you who are just tuning in, Yancy is my husband. I thought about this for a minute and quickly realized that Yancy doesn’t really discipline Gus. Yancy works a lot and his schedule is not your typical 9 to 5. He’s a personal trainer so he keeps all kinds of odd hours. Whenever he gets a moment free, he spends it with Gus. But his free time with Gus is always fun time. He doesn’t get the quantity time with Gus so he makes sure it’s quality. When daddy arrives, their time is usually spent dressing up in Superhero costumes and chasing each other around the house.
Any free time on the weekends is family time which means we are doing something fun. Going to the zoo or listening to music in the park somewhere. Headed to the beach to play or see the latest kid movie to come out. So, basically all of Gus’s time around his dad is fun time. He’s playing or doing stuff he really wants to do. And in these cases, he’s perfectly well behaved. He’s always well behaved when he’s doing what he wants to do.
I’m the one who has to make Gus do the things he doesn’t want to do. I manage day to day living with Gus and let’s face it, most of it isn’t fun. This means all his bad behavior is reserved just for me. Subsequently, I’m the one who does all the disciplining and clearly, it’s not working so well.
So, here’s what I’ve been thinking about. What if Yancy took more of a disciplinary role with Gus? Would this change Gus’s behavior? Would he respond better to him than he does to me? And just how would we do this when there are days that Yancy doesn’t even see Gus except for a few minutes?
I’m interested in your thoughts. Anybody have similar issues? What did you do? Did it work? Do kids respond differently to a male disciplinarian?