Saturday, December 09, 2017

I always used to daydream about the kind of parent I’d be. Like many moms before me, and many more to come, I had a mental list of things I’d never do, things I’d never want to be.  But sadly, life is not a daydream and reality is almost always, quite a sobering experience.

When it comes to discipline, Regan and I could best describe our approach as: The Blind, Leading The Blind. Does it work? Nope. Are we happy? Not really. Are our kids well behaved? Not a shit.

Sophie is going through some thing right now and even though she is only turning 5 in April, I feel like most days I am doing battle with a 16-year-old she-devil, well versed in the art of manipulation. I have days where I handle this all like an absolute pro. I embrace my inner Danish, Dutch or Finnish parent. I talk calmly; I give all the hugs and encouragement while objects and abuse are hurled in my direction. Other days? Well on other days, I am more Al Bundy than perfect-Danish-mom.

Normally I don’t mind any of this. But it’s school holidays, it’s almost Christmas, there is a ton of fun things I want to do, so now I find myself absolutely tired of always being the bad mom. Regan’s role in our house has (and remains to be) that of the savior parent, amazing daddy who saves the littles from the screeching claws of the evil dragon mother. You guys, I am tired of being the one that dishes out the lions share of the shouting.

Now you may be thinking: “What kind of no-good, lay about partner does Nikki have?” This is where the saddest part of my story comes in, Regan is quite happy to pick up the torch and carry on with the discipline responsibilities while I take a break to be “fun mom”. The problem is me.

The girls worship their dad. Because he has not traditionally been the one to shout or haul bums into time-out, when he does do it, they are absolutely devastated. Crushed. The times it has happened, its usually been met with such fierce looks of hurt and confusion that Regan and I end up feeling like absolute arseholes and usually end up having a row with each other because: “Why did you make me do that?”

So how do we move forward? How do we ensure that the scales are always balanced and one parent isn’t burning the discipline candle at both ends?

What works in your home? Or are you in the same boat as I am? I would love to hear more from you all. Especially if you have some advice, because flip, I am ready to pull my hair out.



-Photo by Daiga Ellaby on Unsplash


  1. Sounds like me, I feel useless at this discipline thing and you describing you, describes me. So if you get advice, I want it too please.

  2. Jerall and I kinda had the same thing going that you and Regan do. But I'm working on letting him be the 'bad' parent sometimes because I want K to know mommy is fun too. We mostly make sure that he doesn't have both parents in grumpy with him mode. So far it's mostly working.


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