16 March 2012

Good Cop/Bad Cop...or Single, Deranged Mom

It is a scientific fact some species of animals eat their young. Some days, I wish I were that species. I am probably not the greatest mom in the world (not for lack for trying), but I can say I love my little one tween much beyond words or sometimes even actions. Here I shall comment on a difficult phase we're going through (on top of puberty- as if that weren't bad enough). My kid has sticky fingers and a horrific attitude.

First- I confide while asking readers to not judge. Chloe came from a broken home & suffered much at a young age, before coming to live with me. I've hesitated even saying anything to close friends because I am afraid the walls will go up, fingers will be pointed, and my kid's life will be over before it begins. But its not like that. All children having survived through what she has, are bound to have little social issues here & there. We do therapy, we do church, we do strict mom/tia (that's me!).

Here's where it gets tricky. No matter what happens- good, bad and ugly- I am always forced to be the "bad cop." I am and always will be the disciplinarian. There simply is not anyone else there. I make sure I provide abundant positive reinforcement & even incentive programs to help keep her scholastics on-task. We have fun and spend time together, so she knows she is important to me. To be fair, I give her my expectations and corresponding consequences well in advance, with fun boards around the house to serve as reminders. My threats are NEVER idle. You can ask anyone. I stick to my guns. Yet once every few months, we have an "incident" of her taking money from a wallet which does not belong to her.

Its so stinking frustrating. I'm well educated, I've run the gamut of psychological q & a's with her. I've been shouting angry, sobbing sad, and now...just kind of dispirited and left scratching my head. Is there a "bad cop" I can hire through some social services? Maybe mix things up a bit. I'm joking, and of course, I have a plan of action in place and new and more stringent consequences set up for the repeat offender.

And as I type and mull through the day's events, my reactions, her tears- as well as her inability to understand the consequences of her actions, I come to the conclusion that Moms freaking rock. Single moms are going straight to heaven (except for me, because I have a swearing problem yet to be resolved). I will choose to be BOTH good cop and bad cop, and take my meds so I'm not angry, delusional, Deranged Cop.

Feel free to hit me up in the comments if you have any suggestions for me! Single mom far from family is a lonely gig, so I'm always open to advice. :)


  1. Becky... Do you need us to take Chloe for the weekend? I can put her to work and give you a break. Also, I could ask Clair if he has any bad cop connections. When Kylee was having fire fasination problems, a trip to the fire dept. To see the captain (and uncle) & to hear stories and look at pictures cured her. Lmk by text or phon if you need help, a break etc.

  2. Bb,

    First of all, you are a fantastic mom. So amazing and wonderful that Chloe will realize when she is 18 that she had it as good as she could have dreamed.

    This might be the totally wrong idea, but if she gets caught taking money again, do you have any cop friends who could come scare her a little? My cousin is a cop and we have talked to him a few times about being ready as back up if our kids do something "illegal" so they realize how serious it is. Obviously, if you were the one to "call", she would feel betrayed and lose trust, etc. If there is ever anyone else involved though, and you could blame it on them calling, it might work. Or maybe not. I don't know. Just a sleep-deprived idea. MY Chloe has been up all night super sick with a fever. I brought her a cold sippy of water to try to get her to drink some. I was so tired I forgot to screw the lid on, so I dumped the whole freezing cup of water all over her in her crib. Now HERE is a competitor for worst mom of the year. Thank you...thank you very much.

    Keep praying, keep loving her. "the study of doctrine changes behavior better than the study of behavior changes behavior". (or something like that). You are amazing and I love you! You're a great example and an inspiration. :)

  3. I'd just recommend patience. Even when it doesn't seem like she is getting it, she's probably getting it a little. I know a couple of things about reformed family thieves (though it was a money box and not a wallet. Not that I'm confessing anything.) I think the continued teaching of correct principles will help her get it. Along with maturing a little and probably in getting a job in her later teens that will give her some of her own money so she can have easier access to some cash -- but this time cash of her own. :)