Posted by Fitzy

Time outs have become somewhat of a regular occurance in our house lately.  The Bean is asserting her independence, and has decided that, if she doesn’t get her way, the best revenge is to display a behavior that Mommy and Daddy have already said they don’t like.  Sigh.

This could be part of the so-called terrible twos, it could be part of a very independent Bean’s development: who knows?  All we know at this point is that time outs are no fun to give, but necessary if we don’t want to raise a complete hooligan (and in our eyes, much more acceptable than other forms of punishment).  The funny thing is that the Bean is starting to understand what a time out is and you bet your bippy that she knows why she’s in it.  Last night, after giving poor old Mommy a sound slap on the back after a “Bean, we don’t hit!”, Beanie was summarily placed in her time out chair.  The following is a re-enactment of what we heard after leaving the room:

“Waaaaah, Mommy Mommy!”

“Mommy, I’m soooorrrrryyyy!”

“I’m sorry!  I’m sorry!”

“I toot!  ‘Scuse me!”

“I don’t hit!  I’m sorry!”

While Bean’s dad and I were in the kitchen doubled over laughing at the “I toot!” part of her spiel, the timeout finally came to an end and I went in, gave her a big hug, reminded her that we don’t hit (again), and we went on our merry evening.  For the rest of the night, each and every one of the Bean’s dolls and animals were placed in a time out and were told in no uncertain terms that we don’t hit – DON’T DO THAT, MONKEY! 

We know that she gets it, we know that she gets frustrated and acts out, and we know that this will continue to happen in one way, shape, or form until the end of time.  It’s a struggle to be firm and consistent, honestly – I don’t think anyone actually enjoys disciplining their kids – but it is becoming easier as time goes on and we’re more aware of what the Bean is doing just to rile us up.  In the end, we’re all just working towards polite, well-behaved children who still have that little independent streak and aren’t afraid to speak their minds.  It’s a delicate, delicate balance, and one that I hope we can foster as our Bean continues to challenge us.