Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Business of Child Traumatizing

So I had this big long post written and even posted about my crazy mixed up family. It was a sorted Jerry Springer tale. But it didn't really capture what I was trying to say. So I've completely rethought and revamped the post.

According to some people's theories of traumatizing a child I apparently do this to my children on a daily basis. I just went through it now with CJ. Joe was getting ready for work and CJ wanted daddy to pick him up. I picked him up instead. Not what he wanted so he screamed and cried. Joe walked out the door and got in the car CJ screamed and cried. I came in the house and closed the door and put CJ down so I could use the bathroom CJ screamed and cried. Is this traumatizing? I don't think so. This is parenting. Can't live our moments around what our children want, when they want it, and how they want it. CJ's not the only child I traumatize either.

I traumatized the girls earlier this week when I told them to clean their room and they didn't want to. I traumatized them when they didn't want to go to school, but I made them anyways. I traumatized them when I wouldn't sign a permission slip that took away all of my rights. But I do this in the best interest of my children. They needed to clean their room because things were missing. They need to go to school because that's their job and to become productive people in society they need an education. I did not sign that permission slip as it was written because it was dangerous and not appropriately worded.

Most parents do this on a daily basis without thinking twice. I know I don't think twice about the temper tantrum that CJ threw yesterday when we came home after a party and daddy had to leave for work, but CJ didn't want him to. He was screaming at the top of his lungs for half an hour. He was very upset. I understood he was upset. I hugged him and kissed him and eventually put him down for a nap. He has probably forgotten all about that. Daddy came home from work. Daddy will always come back and he needs to learn that. We don't like that daddy leaves, but we will see him again. It's a valuable lesson.

So why would I be calling this child traumatizing then? It's an important lesson, right? Well, not according to my brother in law. Nope, his step daughter doesn't want to go with her father so she cries and they don't make her go. His step daughter's father is not just some complete stranger one night stand guy that they don't know either. This is his nephew who is the father of his step daughter. Now you see why I had this whole twisted tale written out. It's almost unbelievable that something like this could happen in real life, but I'm living it. My brother in law does not see that this is not right. That he cannot keep this five year old child away from her father just because she cries. Sometimes we as parents have to do things that just are not pretty. There is no good reason why she's saying she doesn't want to go. It's just boring for her. She doesn't come home with bruises. She doesn't come home with wild tales of inappropriate things. She doesn't come home a completely different child. She just does not want to go. Much like my daughters don't want to go to school, or my son doesn't want daddy to leave for work, or my daughters don't want to clean their room, or my son doesn't want to stop climbing on the furniture. He doesn't see that she's ruling the roost. Eventually everything she might not want to do in the moment will turn into a crying fit.

Are you in the business of child traumatizing like me? I'm a child traumatizer and proud of it. If traumatizing was defined the way my brother in law believes it to be defined that is.