Tuesday, September 14, 2010

when life bites

who do you parent together? how do you both decide what is right and what is wrong? how can i put down my old feelings and see things for what they are? how do you discipline a 3 year old biter?

she is beautiful and sweet and loves dolls, and she bites. when i was little my mother handled that by biting me back. i heard stories from friends who were given hot sauce and soap in their mouths.biting is a trigger for me, it makes me very angry. the first time she did i was so angry i made her stand on the wall for 20 minutes but i went into the room and let some anger out on Wes and asked him if Haley had bit the bean what would he have done. which is like saying he would have been much harder on her than the bean. he said  after a very long pause, 'i don't know'. i finally told the bean to go to bed and then last night she did it again, this time i let dad handle it. and when Haley came out saying she was bit dad asked her ' what did she do to the bean to make her bite her?' oh hell no.

i have been sitting here sad because i refuse to talk to him. and today he went to work without kissing me goodbye. i am not used to this, we are not yelling we are just not speaking. i do not approve of his favoritism that i do see. am i reading too much into this? is this from my past or is it real.

my father was very gentle with us, the four of us were his kids, my oldest brother was not. my oldest brother got the worst treatment. he would be told to stand in the corner with a phone book on his head. for an hour, usually longer when my father, being drunk would pass out and leave him there. my oldest sister, was his favorite, and she would manipulate daddy to no end. she was great at pitting mom and dad against each other. she lied and got my older brother in trouble a lot. dad never raised his hand to us but to my older brother, that was the norm. there was a big fight, a lot of big fights, but the one i remember was when daddy came home drunk and told my older brother to take the garbage to the street. we had this really long driveway and so jimmy, my older brother, asked my sister if he could use the basket ball to take the garbage out. she said sure and handed it to him. then as soon as jimmy was out the door my sister ran to the back room and told daddy that jimmy took the ball from her. daddy went to her rescue and after my brother like a drunken pit bull. then jimmy ran away and called mom who was at my uncles house playing cards. mom came home and threw me and jimmy in the car. my sister screamed she wanted to go too. my mother told her no and shoved her away. my father pulled out a shot gun. my mother put the muzzle to her head and told him if he was going to shoot then not to miss. daddy didn't shoot. mom got in the van and we drove away. daddy told my sister that he was the only one who ever really loved her.

my sister and mom never had a relationship, until my father died. then she and mom got to know each other for three years before cancer took mom away. it is hard to be friends with my sister. i used to yell and scream at her the most hateful profane things. i used to see hallmark commercials about sisters who were best friends and thought, what planet were they from? today my sister and i have a relationship but there is so much i cannot speak to her about, because she is not ready to hear it.

today i strive to make the girls love each other and be best of friends. they are so very close in age. every year for 13 days they are the same age. the bean is December 15, Haley is December 28. one year apart.i try to be fair with them and equal in the discipline. deep down i hope Wes is the same, but we are both learning. it just triggered so much bad feelings when he said what he said to my Haley last night i wanted to scoop her up and take her away from the evil man who thought she was wrong.

i am grateful i did not turn it into an unnecessary fight. but there is tension still. and i don't know what is fair and appropriate discipline when it comes to biting. everything i was taught is abusive. but it seems like she does not get discipline for her actions she will continue to do it.

i see my therapist today, the emdr, for post traumatic stress disorder. i need to talk to Wes, but i don't know what to say. it is like he does not hear me when i tell him to treat them both the same. or it could just be past feelings invading my reality and i don't know how to separate the past from the present. at least i will have something to talk to my therapist about.

today's thought; "Anxiety is love's greatest killer. It makes others feel as you might when a drowning man holds on to you. You want to save him, but you know he will strangle you with his panic."- Anais Nin


Dianne said...

It is the therapist who will see it clearly, I have similar reactions. I love the quote by Anais Nin. The issue is between you and your trust in your spouse, not so much the girls behavior. My 3 boys are teens, and I don't think my spouse agrees with anything I see/feel/react/worry about them. We look at eachother as truthfully as we can, but not take their idea personally. (very very very hard to do) I try to be more mature than I think I am capable....HA.
You are right to keep examining this in the light of a new day, but let the feelings be feelings, just that.
Sending you some love,

Brian Miller said...

sounds like so talk is needed...set aside the time to do that and share your feelings...wether you have said it or not...when communication breaks down it can become a very unhealthy read...thoughts and prayers...

steveroni said...

Dianne has got it RIGHT! Rank amateurs such as I should not even comment on this except to offer you support, and pray that your therapist
will continue to help you resolve these deep-seated issues.

Though I get here seldom, we do go back a year or so, and my thoughts turn to you frequently.
Thanks for visiting 'steveroni' from time to time.


OMG, verification word is LEDGO!!!

Akelamalu said...

I think biting is a phase that most children go through. When my boys did it I bit them back - not hard enough to hurt them but hard enough to let them know it wasn't very pleasant. Like all phases kids grow out of them.

I agree with Brian communication is the most important thing in any relationship. Make the effort it will be worth it.

My eldest son was 12 months old when I got together with my husband (to be). Thankfully he loved my boy because he loved me and when our son was born he never made any difference between them. That is something that I told him I would never, never allow.

I hope things settle down and you are able to sort it all out. x

Fractalmom said...

I'd put BOTH girls into immediate counseling. When a child bites like that, it means agression which means unresolved anger issues.

when another child manipulates, especially against a sibling, it means they are seeking control over a situation, and when they can control the adults, it sets a very bad precedence for future behavior.

just my two cents.

Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

Always comes down to control and fear right.

Syd said...

I don't have any answers. I can only suggest that you talk to Wes and tell him that you both are in this together and hope to work as a team. Being parents is rough. I never wanted to lead another in their life. Too busy trying to get my own life straight.

kristi said...

I think the suggestion to put your girls in therapy is a little bit ridiculous! My hubby is hard on the kids, and I am the softie, it causes a LOT of problems so I am working on it.