I am the proud mom to three amazing kids.  I love them more than I can imagine, but some days they make me feel like this:

Yes, a 60+ year old man who dunks his head in a water bucket. No, not really like that. They make me feel like I am on the CRAZY TRAIN!

I gave birth 3 times in 30 months. That alone qualifies me for the crazy train. I had three in diapers for a while. Another stop on the crazy train. I was a milk making factory for what felt like forever. Crazy train. For one year I had the trio at three different schools, which meant three different drop-offs and pick-ups AND I was working full-time. Yup, crazy train. I have one daughter with ADHD, one son with more abbreviated conditions that I can list, and one daughter who knows IT ALL. C.R.A.Z.Y. T.R.A.I.N.

But none of that prepared me for the hell that is sibling fighting. It's bad, folks. It's bad. This has got to be karma hitting me upside the head good and hard for the fighting that went on between my sister and I. And we fought BAD until we were like 18 and 19.

When my kids were young everyone used to comment on how well they got along, how much they enjoyed each others company, blah blah blah. I thought "oh ya, I got this, my kids will grow up being the best of friends."

And then suddenly they weren't. My oldest daughter is constantly irritated by her younger brother. And he knows exactly what to do to push her buttons, and then she yells, then he yells, then I yell. It's a vicious cycle.

We had a long talk tonight and things around here are changing starting NOW! I am implementing a new reward system. When I catch them being good, (playing together nicely, heck even ignoring each would work!!) I'll put a quarter in this:

and when it gets enough quarters in it, I'll take them out for frozen yogurt. This has GOT to work, cause mama has to get off the CRAZY TRAIN! There are negative consequences for fighting, too. Haley has to give me $1, Ella has to give up her doll for 30 minutes, and Ronin has to play in the backyard alone for 30 minutes. Each of their punishments is tailored just for them based on what makes them tick.

I'm telling you all about this because I promised myself that when I started this blog I would be honest about the challenges that I face as I train as an amateur athlete and obstacles I encounter as an obesity survivor. I often compare being an obesity survivor to being like a recovering alcoholic. You can't take just one bite, (or one sip) and not expect some of those old feelings, those powerful feelings to come slipping back in to your mind. And yes, overeating can destroy your body and your life just like too much alcohol can. And the way these kids have been behaving has been hard on me and making me wish I had a Reeses Peanut Butter Egg (or 6) to make me feel better. But I don't keep that crap in the house, it's not good for me, and it's not good for them. So we'll reward our good behavior with FroYo. It's the obesity survivor's O'Douls.

So there you have it. I hope it works.


If you are a parent, do your kids fight? How do you handle it??

Comments (5) -

  • Cute reward system. My boys are close in age - just 19 months apart. They are 6 and 5 right now. LOL. Sounds crazy, right? Some days they seem AWFUL to each other. Other days they are BFFs. They are different people in "close quarters" - they will get on each others nerves.  I just try to remind them that they WILL be each other's go-tos when they are older, to help each other in thick and thin. My sister and I have gotten along best since she started college (shes older) and we've been each others serious go-tos for the past 15 years or so!
  • Yes, nearly as crazy as my set being 359 days apart Smile
  • My girls, who are 14 months apart, fought a lot around ages 8/9/10. When DD1 turned 10, we turned the home office into her own bedroom, so she had her own space. It turns out that's what her personality needed and I'm glad we noticed it at that age, because - like her dad - she needs a few hours each day away from people. She even told her class the other day (10th grade) that she likes applesauce more than people!
    We had a time out chair when they were little. Now, as teens, I can take away weekend plans, or anything with a screen and a battery; tv, cell, laptop, ipad, etc.
    It's hard not to join in the voice raising, but a great example is the best thing you can be. Also, tell stories of fights you had when you were a kid and how you resolved them. I'm guessing you weren't throwing punches.
  • She sounds a lot like my oldest. I know she needs her own space, but we don't have any more space to give! We're thinking we are likely going to have to get a bigger home soon!!
  • My kids (two boys) fight like cat and dog. I'm always hearing, "oh yeah, two boys is the toughest combination" blah blah, which is such a huge generalization it makes me see red. It's so refreshing to hear another parent talk about their difficulties with siblings fighting. I love that caught being good jar so much I think I'll make one! And the different punishments is a great idea.
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