Bribery is power

17 Jun

I know that’s it’s probably not cool to say this, or that as a mom, I’m supposed to admit it, but I really dislike children. I like mine, I mean, they’re sufficiently trained to not piss me off, but other people’s children drive me nuts. You know those kids in the grocery store that are either hanging all over their mothers, or are screaming bloody murder because they couldn’t have Captain Frosted Cocoa Bits? The other day we were in the grocery store, and there was this adorable little girl. She had the cutest little dimples and blond curly hair. She was happily gabbing to her mother, who was of course only have listening as she juggled her phone, shopping list and a baby on her hip. Then the little girl decided she wanted a cookie or something. Her mother was all, not now baby girl, too close to dinner. Well, this kid was not having it. She shrieked and started throwing an all out fit. Her mother looked apologetically at me, and I tried not to give her the disapproving “aren’t you going to do something about that” face. I smiled and tried to ignore this screaming little brat. Her mother was doing all she could not to yell at this little monster in public (because really, who hasn’t made the mistake of yelling at their kids in a public place, only to find a gaggle of onlookers who shake their head in disgust at your feeble attempts to quiet your kid). The formerly cute little girl was in full on screaming mode, big globby snot running down her face, her cheeks all red and blotchy, starting to break out in a sweat because of all the energy she was putting into this fit. Then her mother, probably in desperation/bribery, gave her the damn cookie. Like magic, the little girl regained her composure and happily munched on her cookie.

David did that once in a grocery store. He was screaming and kicking and being absolutely horrific because I wouldn’t let him touch everything on the shelves. I’d read in a magazine that when your kid throws a fit in public like in a grocery store, you’re supposed to calmly get your stuff and leave, you’re never, ever supposed to resort to bribery. Leave the cart, take your child by the hand and walk out. That way he’ll get the message that his behavior isn’t appropriate. So I grab David’s hand and start walking away. David though, must be smarter than your average kid, or that was just the worst advice ever, because David refused to walk, I was literally dragging him down the aisle. Right, pulling your kid out by the arms while his legs are dragging along behind him is worse than bribery. Then I knelt down and whispered to him, if you stop I’ll give you a cookie. He stopped. Instantly. Ahh, the power of the bribe.

Anyone who tells you that bribery doesn’t work is kidding themselves. I’ve bribed the kids with everything from a new Sidekick to money to a PlayStation 3. Yeah, you might run into the occasional self-absorbed kid (hey, that’s what Sunday school is for, right?), but at least I can grocery shop without worrying about the next hide your face and hope no one notices that it’s your kid that’s screaming his head off tantrum. I wish that poor woman could say the same thing. This is of course why Chris says, we don’t need any more kids. Your blog is like a baby, only better because it doesn’t poop. Ain’t that the truth.


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