Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Remember when punishment was not a weekend at the spa?

Do you remember when you quaked at the sight of mom and/or dad coming to 'lay down the law' and/or voicing the following, 'You are grounded!'
I can remember times when those words alternately sent me into fits of rage and frustration and fear. Fear that my friends would forget about me and become strangers when I emerged from my enforced imprisonment. I remember screaming (in my thoughts only) 'I hate you!' or 'I wish you were dead' or the ever popular 'I wish I had different parents!'

Yes, those were the good 'ole days...

Today's imps (specifically mine) seem to be made of sterner stock.

When g.imp was 2 or 3 and refused to clean up her toys, the wife imp and I cleaned her out. Black plastic bags filled never to be seen again! We anticipated wailing, the frantic search of the house, begging for her toys back...and we were right--for the first week couple of days few hours 15 minutes anyway.


Not once in the past 3-4 years has she ever asked to have her toys back. Not f-ing once!! (Notice the disappointment here? Is it bad of me to feel let down when the desired reaction from the imps does not materialize? Am I a horrible father for wanting them to feel bad?)

Other attempts at punishments also seemed to be equally humorous to our imps:

-Early bedtimes: Hey, more time to read (g.imp is currently reading 2 Harry Potter and 1 Beverly Quimby books).

No t.v. for a week: Not even missed. As a matter-of-fact, g.imp will stand at the top of the stairs and announce:
'Ok, turn the t.v. off, I am coming downstairs now!'
(baseball has now be grandfathered in as acceptable t.v. time during this period of duress)

No playing with her best friend: Hey dad, can we call 'classmate imp' and schedule a play date? or 'Can I call grandpa?' or b.imp and imp huddle together and sing, dance and, when I am not in the room, I can feel them plotting together like French underground freedom-fighters to turn their punishment into revenge!

It is only two more days until the imps can once more be turned loose on society and I can already hear the faint strains of 'Le Marseillaise'.

9 comments:

Mama of 2 said...

I know how you feel Dennis. Little Man doesn't seem to worry too much about any of the punishments that we dole out. He seems imprevious to them and frankly that frieghtens me to no end.
I like you as a child feared the words 'what until your dad gets home' and did everything within my power to make up to mom before dad walked through the door. Not Little Man. Dad's his playmate and I am the disciplinarian so that line doesn't work.

If you come up with a punishment that holds water please pass it along.

Diana said...

If my son could scoff at me he would. Nothing I say scares him,but at least he still has the fear of Daddy in him so the "i'm getting Daddy" works on him. Probably not for too long, though...

creative-Type Dad (Tony) said...

Two words: Kid Jail.

I'm building mine now. And I might have the wife sew a striped suit.

radioactive girl said...

When I tell my kids to clean up and they don't, I put it all in bags to donate. I think they are happier to have the toys gone so they aren't in their way! I swear I heard them once say to each other "it's ok, just clean up the toys we want and then mom will give the rest away and we won't have to pick them up". And then maybe they saw a side of me they wish they had never unleashed! Or maybe not because I am not a great yeller except in my imigination. I still haven't really thought of much to do to punish them. Mostly they are good kids, and I am thankful for that since I am not sure what to do if they are not!

dennis said...

Mama of 2: I have found that raising my voice will attract their immediate attention. But I am not much of a yeller. If they work me into that state, I might as well turn in my 'Daddy Union' card...

Diana: man, I was scared of my dad through high school. When he turned 50 he was still offering to 'duke it out'...

Tony: Do you accept prison transferees? I love the concept but who's the sucker you are going to try to con into being the warden?

dennis said...

Radioactive Girl: Typically my kids are so well behaved the wife and I find ourselves paraphrasing a line out of Casablanca whenever the imps act out...

'I am shocked! Shocked to find...'

We are seriously trying to convince the imps that donating their toys is a good idea (thus making it their decision and not ours..hahaha)

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