Fear Me

I’m failing miserably at being intimidating.

Last night my son talked of all the places on earth he wanted to visit some day and one was “where the gypsies live.”

All this child knows of “gypsies” is it’s where he will be sold when he is naughty.

And he’s so afraid, he wants to visit. I’ve been selling him to the gypsies a LOT lately.
I don’t necessarily subscribe to fear parenting. I don’t want my children shaking and peeing themselves when they’ve colored on the walls, but there is something to be said for knowing Mom will beat your ass if you back talk. What I can not seem to figure out, however, is how to make them fear me without giving them something to really fear.

Confused yet? Yeah…me too.

I remember my dad always threatening the belt. He never used it, of course, but so help me if he cracked it once I was stopped dead in my tracks. I don’t have a belt. I don’t even have a stick, and I’m pretty sure my kids already know I won’t hit them. Smart little shits seem to know it so well, they use it against me…

I don’t think they are running all over me. I just don’t want to have to make good on that sale-how much could I get for a blue eyed, blonde boy? I would think that would at least pay off the house.


  1. This is funny because I recently was talking to a friend of mine who moved here from China a few years ago. She asked me how parents are supposed to get children to behave in this country “when you are not allowed to beat them.” I found that hilarious. (Only because I knew she didn’t mean abuse them, but it is so funny hearing a cute tiny little woman ask a question like that earnestly in the right situation.)

  2. I shouldn’t admit this, because sometimes it makes me feel guilty, but little Dawson cowers when I raise my voice. I think it’s because he thinks I’m having an adult temper tantrum. Which is what his father tells him …. to which he tells me, “Mumma, need a time out?”

    Actually, I just threaten to put him in his crib, the thing he hasn’t slept in in 7 months. He pretty much listens after that.

  3. Are you my long lost sister? I used to be threatened with a belt never used and I was always being sold to the gypsies. By any chance do you tell your kids to go play in traffic?

  4. You need to do something really surprising and unexplainable sometime. This will show them that you’re volatile and unpredictable, and instill the right kind of fear into their little hearts.

    Until they ship you off to a mental institution.

  5. Yeah, my worst threat is hanging them by their toes from the ceiling. For some reason they never seem to scared. **sigh**

  6. My mother used to tell me I was cruising for a bruising. And then I turned it into a song and dance (which was actually pretty cute if I do say so myself). I am a big fan of hitting them where it hurts. Discover what they love the best-and that’s what gets taken away or becomes “mommy’s toy”. I guess you could also reward the good behaviors- it’s less fun than hijaking toys though.

  7. I am absolutely convinced our boys are communicating somehow. I just know it. It’s that age. I tell him to please come here I want to talk to you and he says no I don’t want to and walks away. I start counting and he moves faster, towards me this time. I get to three and I don’t know what to do. Spanking makes him more pissed off and I don’t need that headache. Timeouts are a huge joke. My thing lately: gathering up all the kids toolboxes and hammers and whatnot, making them watch from the bay window while I load them in the trunk and then listen to the silence that is them behaving. I don’t know how long this will last. I’m not holding my breath for too long. My heart and sympathy go out to you.

  8. I hit them where it hurts…the toys. One time the 2 kiddos were fighting over a yo-yo, so I told them that if it didn’t stop, they’d get all their toys put away. They didn’t stop and guess what, all 4 garbage bags of toys including castles, etc went into the garage for a few days and they had the yo-yo to play with, ha, i got their attention, they learned how to share and take turns, and how sweet it was to live in a toy-less house at least for a few days.

  9. The gypsies live in Los Angeles. They’re called The Clippers.

  10. I know Cordy’s currency when it comes to behaving: the TV. I threaten to turn off the TV, and she’s suddenly no longer interested in climbing the cat tree or pulling the cushions off the couch. It’s sad, but it works.

  11. Oh the gypsies live in Spain and tell him to be afraid, very afraid! He REALLY does not want to visit Spain! Take it from me!

    Dios mio! 😉

  12. Donna Deslippe better known as Bitter Bitch at italk2much.com has no room to talk about others’ well being or blog. After she’s done throwing her cyber bombs she’ll tuck tail and run as usual. Actually I’m amazed she hasn’t deleted or made her blog private already. Yeah that Donna, Bitter Bitch, Just Donna, AntiSocial Bitch, Miss Ann she’s the real authority on blogging, mothering and mental illness…. puleeze. How many children did she “help” raise? Seven? If we’re claiming our friend’s children as our own put down as mother to 76 m’kay.

    Anyone else notice how Donna copys everything that insane chic Rachel does? Rachel has exlover drama within the week Donna will have exlover drama. Rachel has tacos for dinner well what do you know Donna has tacos for dinner. Oh that’s right their BFF so it’s not childish in the least. /sarcasm.

  13. I think I have missed something as I don’t understand previous comment.s
    But I love tacos, why didn’t they invite me over for tacos?
    I’m a nice person.

  14. I’m hesitant to say anything, since I am not a mother, and as such can understand completely if you don’t want to hear advice from me. In fact, I’m not even sure you’re asking for advice, and if that’s the case, then please ignore the rest of this comment. I don’t want to step on your toes if you just want to vent your frustration. I know how annoying that can be.

    But, having worked in childcare a fair amount, and watched a lot of parents in action, I can tell you one thing I know for sure: empty threats will get you nowhere. If you’re not really going to sell him to the gyspies, and I expect he knows that you’re not really going to sell him to the gypsies, then what motivation does he have to do what you’re asking? I like some of the above ideas – threaten to turn off the TV, or to take away toys, or to make him miss dessert. And then, if he still doesn’t listen, make sure you actually do what you said you were going to do. I think there is a balance (impossible to get perfect, I’m sure, but good to work towards) between being feared and still being the cool, fun mom. It’s not that you really want to be “feared”, even, just that you want to be respected enough to be listened to and, when it comes down to it, obeyed. So yeah, there’s my thoughts. Make realistic threats, and always follow through.

    And, for what it’s worth, I think you’re doing a pretty darned good job at this whole mom thing.

  15. Spare the rod. Throw the child down the stairs instead…

  16. My kids really want to visit Dragon Tales, but not because I threaten them with it. Once your kids know that you’re full of crap (about anything) they’re going to push you more and more. I often wonder at what age my kids will realize this and put their hands on their hips, telling me that I’m not really going to make them walk home in the snow. Hopefully you will find a solution by then and I can steal it.

  17. I don’t know where the gypsies live. I don’t know what works for other mothers. I know that when i use her full name, the princess runs to me with open arms. The prince however, laughs at me. What age it too old to start with the gypsy threat? I’ve never thought to use it, and I think that it might work on the 7 year old.

  18. I read this a kazillion times but never got around to responding, so let me do it now… I am right there with you. When I do actually scare Sweet Pea I feel horrible, especially when she begs me to, “talk nice to me, Mama!”

  19. My mother-in-law used to tell her kids she still had her right to abortion, even when they were 21. ha ha!

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