Monday, July 7, 2014

Divorced Moms column: 5 Reasons Why I Don't Hit My Children

My latest Divorced Moms column is out. Hope you all had a fabulous 4th of July weekend. Ours was nice. Peaceful and relaxing. We leave for LA in just four days, yay!

5 Reasons Why I Don't Hit My Children (as tempting as it can be)
Lizzy Smith                    
July 07, 2014
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I will never forget the time that my then seven year old daughter pushed me to the edge of madness. It was last summer and we had just boarded our cruise ship in Copenhagen. As I was unpacking, something upset her. I don’t even remember what it was. But she literally started screaming at the top of her lungs. A full on child temper tantrum. I was speechless, stunned and frozen. A million possible reactions ran through my mind, none of which seemed a good idea. Do I slap her or throw something against a wall? What are the people around us thinking? That I'm beating the crap out of my child when, in reality, I hadn't touched her? My 13 year old daughter stared at me to see how I was going to react. My heart pounded and I was beyond furious, nearly out of my mind with red hot anger. I walked into our tiny little bathroom, shut the door, and sat on the toilet seat with my hands shaking. Gathering my thoughts, trying to calm down, trying to come up with an action plan. I was frightened at how close I had come to harming my child.
When I was ready, I left the bathroom and sat on the bed next to her and looked in her eyes. “Listen up,” I said calmly, so calmly that she, I think, was truly afraid of me. “If you ever do that again, I will grab you by the arm and push you into the hallway and shut the door behind you. You will then be standing in the hallway alone while everyone on the ship realizes that a seven year old child isn’t being touched or hurt and is just acting like a two year old. You will be totally embarrassed. I am also taking all your dolls away from you (we had purchased several small dolls at some of the cities we had visited on the trip) and they are mine until we get home, . And even then, you only get them back if you have behaved. Questions?”