Here is a dirty shameful secret I am going to share, I have a temper, and usually I an control it without incident, but every once in awhile it flairs and I see red and then I have a mini explosion and then i feel the worst guilt EVER!!!
The worst of it is, though, these temper flairs are always directed at my kids or loved ones. And its always the proverbial straw that broke the camels back that does it. Its never a big thing it's always the last little thing that tips the scale, but I think that's how life is at least my life. The trouble with my temper is that I have a hugely long fuse and many times things can improve and the fuse expands, but when things don't improve and my nerves continue to be rubbed raw on a daily basis, eventually the dust blows the bomb and it's a big bomb.
It's a lot of yelling, a lot of theatrics, a spank may be involved. (Oh if you are going to pass judgement, go right ahead, but I am not going to pay any attention to those negative comments) I am owning this story, it's not a great story, but it's part of who I am, and if I don't acknowledge who I am and my shortcomings I cannot improve myself and become a better person for those around me. And after the quick explosion the tears come, because I am generally frustrated with having lost my temper but also with the behaviours that have rubbed my nerves raw and I need to improve.
Years ago I lost my temper on my oldest son, over him pouting about having to do the dishes. Such a little thing for him to complain about and really what kid doesn't, but I just lost myself to my temper. I yelled at him, I told him he was ungrateful, he was being an ass, I raised my hand, but I refrained from hitting him, I sent him to his room and I paced downstairs. He was upset and crying and I felt bad. Things were rough for both of us, my father was dying in the hospital, he'd been out of school for three weeks and was struggling, I was with my husband at the time and it was a new adjustment for us, it wasn't just the two of us, we had added one more to our family and we had two dogs. ah the dogs may not have had a lot to do with anything but it was a new experience. He'd been whining before this event sort of daily for things that he wanted or that he wasn't happy. After I lost my temper and I was able to cool down, in the midst of being so shamed by the display I went upstairs to talk to him. Because even though I had said he was a bad, ungrateful kid, he wasn't he just was choosing to be ungrateful and uncooperative because he was dealing with things. School was hard, he didn't like his teacher he was struggling with assignments, he knew I was struggling because of my dad and he didn't know how to help me. My oldest is a great kid, he's amazing and I am so proud of him, even when he tries to do things that aren't exactly wise choices. He owns his choices and he's willing to talk about things with me and I love him unconditionally. I am proud that I can go back to my kids and admit when I am wrong, that I can tell them I am not perfect and I am human I don't always do everything right but I am trying my hardest. I hope they see that, I hope they know that I am trying to be the best person I can be for myself and for them.
Tonight, Lil Man was the victim of my temper. He has this annoying habit of dumping soap into his bath water, and not a tablespoon of soap, but the ENTIRE bottle of baby soap or shampoo. The first time he did it, I was annoyed, I told him he could not do that and that it was wasteful. I explained that soap cost money and that he couldn't just be dumping it in the tub, he needed to ask and I would help him with it. The next time he did, I was irritated, we had talked about this, I had even moved the soap to on top of the toilet so it wasn't in the tub with him. When I asked him why he did it, and he told me well the soap wasn't in the cupboard where he couldn't get it. I just shook my head at him and explained that he was again being wasteful and that I wouldn't tolerate it anymore. The third time was at my sisters, she had left the soap with him and he started dumping it in the tub, by now you probably realize that we let him have alone time in the tub, we always check on him and we've taught him safety, and we are trying to increase his independence. Then before this last disposing of the soap, he got a hold of the sunscreen and lathered so much sunscreen on his arms and legs that he was shiny, like he looked like an oiled stripper. So we talked about how we didn't need to use so much and we should only use what we needed because using too much was wasteful. (I hate being wasteful, it's a huge pet peeve for me) Then tonight he did it again, one of the HUGE bottles of baby shampoo, emptied the entire thing in the tub and then filled the bottle up with water. His tub water was yellow, YELLOW!! I couldn't believe it, I just lost it, made him get out of the tub tapped his bum and sent him to his room, telling him he was wasteful and a bad kid. ( I felt terrible about the bad kid thing) I told him he hadn't listened and asked if he knew he wasn't supposed to play with the shampoo, again I had not left it in the tub area, I had put it on the counter, he had willfully gotten out of the tub and grabbed it. He told me he knew but he wanted bubbles and then was upset because he got soap in his eyes. I swear there was more soap in the tub then water, I mean the water was YELLOW! Then I realized he hadn't washed his hair so I took him back to the bathroom and gave him a shower. He doesn't like showers because he doesn't like to get water in his eyes, I told him to keep his eyes closed while we showered. Then after the shower I took him back to his room made him get his pjs on and it was straight to bed. After I had cooled down I went in to talk with him. I said I was sorry I had tapped his bum, which he would say was a spank and he wouldn't be wrong, I then told him he was a good boy, that I loved him, but that wasting the soap was a bad thing to do and that I would appreciate it if he didn't do that again. I then asked if he should touch the shampoo or body wash and he answered no, he knew he wasn't supposed to. We then talked about punishment, he was going to have to help out around the house to do chores to make up for his wasting the shampoos. I took away the screen times he was looking forward to, and we have decided that we will have showers for awhile until he understands not to waste the shampoo. I just don't know how to teach him about being wasteful, how do you show a child that lives in our society that never wants for anything that just because we can have so much doesn't mean we should??
So there it is, my imperfection, my temper!! I hate my temper and I work hard to keep it under control, but sometimes I have an explosion, then I have a good cry and then I am reset again. It's not a great cycle, but it's the cycle that works for me.
if anyone has any helpful hints on how to deal with this please share with me, dealing with my temper or how to deal with teaching patience and maybe not being wasteful to children. Sigh parenting, we all have our demons to fight, this is mine.