Wednesday, 26 July 2017

My Daughter's Inimitable Pranks

Parents of toddlers would unanimously agree that not a single day passes without drama in their households. Embarrassing situations, anxious moments, clumsy scenarios are only to be expected for parents with bratty tots. The other day, I felt sheepish and embarrassed when my two year didn't even
display the slightest compunction to snub me, defy me and accuse me in front of my visitors. My
daughter is not the coy one who would sheepishly hide behind her mummy. She is one dare devil who catches you off guard with her pranks, gets dramatic and manipulative when you least expect it. She plays favourites far too often leaving me astounded. She yells, swears and throws tantrums at the drop of a hat. Yep, she is a prankster who loves to humour and annoy you! A drama queen that she is, she constantly explores infinite ways to grab your attention!

My guests thoroughly enjoyed the drama unfolding before them. My toddler's pranks coupled with her high-pitched singing of newly learnt rhymes, her 'sweetie-cutie' talks bowled them over with me
no where in the picture. They were even more entertained when they heard all the stories of how
frequently I would lose my temper at what she believed were her innocuous pranks and habits until this happened.

Out of the blue, my daughter, much to our consternation, pounced on their little son, pawing his chubby cheeks with her razor sharp nails leaving him a bundle of pain, dismay and unending sobs. My relative shuddered and pulled her son back. Taken aback, she interrogated me with the tone of an upright police officer, "Don't you trim her nails? I am sorry, she raises a hue and cry while getting her nails trimmed. I had planned to do it while she was asleep but just forgot". And suddenly, my guests lost all interest and got up to say it was time for them to return home. They looked at my daughter who winked with her trademark mischievous twinkle in her eyes!!!

Monday, 10 July 2017

Parental Abuse

Child abuse is a grave concern, which the world is trying hard to address. However, there is something called 'parental abuse' by toddlers which is hardly known. This involves slapping their moms/dads, pulling their hair, yelling at them. This open defiance is mainly indulged by toddlers like mine afflicted with 'terrible twos' syndrome. All efforts to deal with 'parental abuse' are nullified by these ingenious pranksters!

My childhood years were charaterized by the usual mischief, fun and excitement. I can
never recall an incident where I openly defied my parents and sweared at them though! As I watch
my toddler-daughter indulging in a range of tricks and pranks on me and her father as well as on her grandparents, multitude of questions arise in me. As I spend time with my mother, I try to jog her memory, prodding her to go down the memory lane to remember any incident involving me hitting her and yelling. She immediately responds with a big 'never'.

For a change, I trotted out the most favourite line that our parents and elders use. "Gone
are those days when young people held older ones in awe and respect". Elders back then inspired
fear and power, so much so that many youngsters feared to speak up in their presence! Voicing opinions were done in hushed tones and a hierarchy was established and maintained at all times. Any suggestion, plan was to go through several rounds of hearings and reviews by every family member before it was approved by the patriarch. Direct confrontation with the eldest and oldest family member was prohibited completely.

It is obvious that the older status quo is no longer applicable now. Children are now bold, strong and
confident. Thanks to their modern parents who give them the freedom and space to explore, share and learn. While I appreciate and endorse the new age parenting and strongly dislike our earlier formula of raising kids, I am still at a loss to correct my kid's aggressive behaviour. As seasoned parents, do you have any ideas for handling 'parental abuse'?