Before I get into the kid situation, I want to mention how much I appreciate computer problems that can be fixed with rebooting. Thanks, Noah.
I want to record that my children have been fantastically disobedient for the past few weeks. They told me they were doing academics and instead they have been watching stupid videos on youtube.
This is worthy of recording for a few reasons. 1) They liiiiiiiiiiiiiied more than they have ever lied to me before. This is a pretty epic trust violation between us. 2) They have been lying about the work they are doing and asking for points for doing work they aren’t doing. While also spending lots of time on the screen they aren’t paying for. Double whammy of theft of points. 3) I feel like this is an important milestone in them testing the boundaries between their autonomy and me. 4) I didn’t completely flip out. The kids said I didn’t even scream and I’m hella proud of myself. EC said I yelled but in a way she felt was completely fair and appropriate.
Because I am not going to try and equalize the point issue I told them that this will be handled on a couple of levels. First: they lost a lot of trust on the screen front. They now have to take turns being on the computer so that one kid at a time can sit at the kitchen table with no headphones so that I can verify that they are doing what they say. I am not sure how long this will go on. Noah proposes that we install blocking/tracking software and gosh that sounds like work to me right now.
MC did not do this as flagrantly nor for as many weeks/months (I can tell this issue goes back as far as the browser history goes… I don’t know for sure how much longer EC has been pulling this). MC has participated for at least the last week or two watching over ECs shoulder… but I don’t think they pushed their luck as far as EC pushed hers.
So EC is going to be weeding my garden for me. I told her that because she effectively “stole” bonus screen time (many many many hours of it) AND she has been claiming to do academics while not actually doing it… she gets to do work for me. It just seems fair. She is so freaking happy that I’m not freaking out at her or screaming or flying off the handle that she is excited and eager to take on this task. She didn’t argue for .1 second. That will be an hour a day of work until she finishes the yard. Based on previous years of effort I think that means she’s going to be weeding the garden for an hour a day for almost a month. I don’t feel bad at all. When she complains (which will come at some point) I will cheerfully say, “So how good does lying to me feel?”
She also has to do extra academic time every day to make up for the lost time. Because seriously dude… you do need to spend time learning. Not cool.
I told her that in a twisted, awful way I’m sorta glad she did this. She has always been such a dedicated little rule follower that I worry that she is never able to over ride people bossing her. I told her that at some point in the future… she is going to literally need to over rule me and lie to me. I am going to be wrong about something and she is going to need to suck up her courage and defy me. I’m glad to see she can even though I think this was not a worthwhile time to engage in this action.
She agreed that this probably wasn’t worth it because her stomach has been hurting. But in the future… yeah she agrees that it is good that she knows she can do what she wants to do even when I don’t like it.
So another fucking opportunity for growth. For both of us.
I feel really amused by the fact that I am really glad she finally found the strength to stand up to me. That’s awesome. But I’m not going to harp on that part very long in front of her…