I’ve hit a point with Charlotte where I can try to speak rationally with her. I’ll ask her a question, she’ll give me an answer, and so it goes. She’ll tell me what she wants for dinner (usually nothing, because who needs food?), I’ll make it (usually throw some Teddy Grahams or pretzels in a bowl because some food is better than no food, right?) and we can actually have a nice little chat.
But then there are times. OH THERE ARE TIMES. Times with a toddler who thinks she is completely independent and there is no way I can get her to do what I want. And so I have come to use bribery as a tool in my arsenal. AND I DON’T FEEL BAD ABOUT IT.
You guys. Do you know how much shit you can get your kid to do if you tell them if they do it you’ll give them a lollipop or a donut? SO. MANY. THINGS. On the 4th of July I needed her to take a damn nap so I could finish cooking my food to bring to my friend’s house, and also because if she didn’t nap she would be a grade-A asshole and ruin the entire day. She was resisting my efforts every step of the way. And then I said, “if you take a nap, mommy will let you have a red pop sometime!” And she looked up at me soooo happy and screamed RED POP RED POP and then closed her eyes and slept for two hours. AND THE BEST PART! I didn’t specify when I would give her a red pop, so it did not have to be upon the completion of the nap. She didn’t even ask! I WON THAT ROUND SO HARD.
Another time I wanted her to sit in her stroller for the duration of a walk to get coffee and do some errands prior to going to the playground. She did not want to go in the stroller, because why get pushed in a relaxing seat when you could make your mother hold you? I told her if she sat in her stroller the whole time like a good girl I’d get her a donut. I got her a donut that time and she ate it (only after I removed every sprinkle from it, because she’s weird as shit and doesn’t like sprinkles) and sat in her stroller forever and I didn’t have to break my back carrying her. ANOTHER WIN.
I mean, this is probably not the best parenting technique. I’m sure half of you are rolling your eyes, and that’s okay. But sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures, and so I will continue to bribe her with lollipops and donuts. I just won’t always specify when she can have them. That’s the mark of a good negotiator if you ask me.