Is bribery a sustainable parenting tactic? I think RB was motivated by embarrassment to poop in the potty, not the carrot of a car bed I dangled out in front of her.
When we returned home from vacation, she slept in her crib for three nights before she remembered,
“I pooped in the potty, I’m supposed to get a car bed!”
SIGH. Crib, we had a good run.
Who knew when I sent Captain off to fetch a giant, plastic, toddler, car bed I found on Craigslist, that I would then have a subsequent car loving kid who has just about outgrown the car bed before she ever set eyes on it.
I was never concerned enough to end our crib days a minute sooner. And I’ve been googling full-size car beds. They exist.
The bed is a huge success as far as RB is concerned. I’m not a huge fan of two free range kiddos.
RB is on week four of no diapers. Last week she exclaims,
“I pooped in the potty! Do I get another car bed?!!”
This is why I’m not so sure about bribery. Where do we go from here? Also this is how some people end up with a driveway full of vehicles. Captain.
Last night RB declares from the toilet,
“I’m not going to get a lot of car beds, just one car bed.”
“Could I have a lot of car beds?”
Two weekends ago BB begged for a sleepover in RB’s room. BB hasn’t slept in her own room since.
Both kids are thrilled with the situation. In between being thrilled, I hear RB’s bloodcurdling scream.
I’m ready to separate them. RB wipes away tears,
“BB is touching my car bed.”
“Do you want her sleeping here next to you?”
“Then you need to be flexible.” And it IS a used car.
Another parenting tactic I need to let go of is assuming any behavior BB does is predictive of what RB will do.
BB will relax in the bathroom reading and daydreaming for ages. She won’t move until she gets someone to check her. She doesn’t need this. She knows she’s capable, but for whatever reason, she waits however long it takes for someone to come give her the all clear.
RB went to poop and I wandered off. I came back. No one was in the bathroom. The toilet was full of poop and no toilet paper.
It never occurred to me that RB would poop and abscond.
I turn the corner and there’s RB’s bare bum in the living room playing Barbies.
“RB you need to wipe!”
She turns. One hand is clutching a wad of toilet paper. Annoyed, she waves it in my face,
I hold my living room to a very low standard, but free of poop and poopy toilet paper is one that I will continue to aspire to.