This didn't go over very well -- cue screaming, stomping, and my favorite, flopping on the ground.
I generally start with 1-2-3 Magic, my decibel level dependent on how many cups of coffee I've been able to imbibe before the arguments begin, and how much I can focus my mind away from the utter ridiculousness of fighting a child to change his clothing.
But thanks to therapy, I decided to take a different approach and ask him why he didn't want to change his pants.
A novel idea, I know, but one that often gets lost in the sheer madness and exhaustion of living in a house with a whole lot of kids.
Turns out, you see, that he didn't have any shorts in his drawers, which would sort of make it hard for him to put shorts on in the first place. And change into shorts after the fact.
And so, I spent the rest of the day imagining all the times I cut him off before even asking about the real problem, my impatience and frustration often stopping me from seeing the other side.
And I tried not to feel too guilty about it.
Fast forward a week to a post by a friend of mine, expressing her anger towards parents who choose not to vaccinate (or delay vaccinations of) their children because she felt it resulted in her own child getting sick. Cue the onslaught of comments about crazy parents and their crazy choices.
I suppose my vaccination choices make me one of those crazy parents. But there are reasons, good ones, actually, that I chose to delay the DTaP until my kids were a little older.
I have hot button parenting issues too, we all do really, and as much as I personally loathe kid leashes and spanking, in fact, I can get pretty riled up by them, I can actually see situations where a parent might resort to them.
Well, not soda in a baby bottle. Sorry.
But when you see a parent walking her kid on a leash, maybe he has special needs. Maybe the kid was about to dash into the street and her first instinct was to smack him.
I get that sometimes the other side is that people are ignorant idiots. Unfortunately, being a dumbass does not preclude you from reproducing.
But lately, I've been trying to give people the benefit of the doubt before I give them a rash of shit because I realize that there might be a decent, acceptable explanation for what I might otherwise deem as ridiculous.
There's a way to share your strong opinions, your ire, even, and also accept that the choices you wouldn't make for your own kids and family might have been thoughtfully made by others.
And I figure, the energy you're using to bash other parenting choices, well, why not use that to make your parenting better for your own kids.