Friday, January 18, 2008

When All Else Fails...


Let’s face it. We all want our kids to be mindless robots who never disagree with us and do everything we tell them to, right? No? Just me, huh? Oh sure I want them to develop into their own person and discover their own gifts, blah, blah, blah... just as long as they continue to do everything I say. Kidding, of course. (cough, cough)

So what do you do when the threats of bodily harm positive reinforcement doesn’t work? Why you bribe them of course.

For example: Seamus is at a near 100% success rate for going “peeps in the toilet” since the very day we started commando-style potty training last Tuesday. As for the “cannon-balls sinking the pirate ship”??? Uh, not so much. At all. Yet. In his defense, he has had a bit of the runs a consistency problem lately and I’m not sure he can hold it. I’m trying not to be too hard on him. So we’ve done a temporary switch to pull-ups so I can avoid washing an unmentionable substance out of his tighty whities several times daily.

Day 1: “Come on, push out some cannon balls and sink the pirate ship in the toilet, Captain Shea Beard!!!” If you do... I’ll give you a piece of chocolate.”

Day 2: “Hey Captain Shea Beard, push out some cannon balls... sink that pirate ship, and I’ll give you two pieces of chocolate and a circus peanut.”

Day 6: “Seamus, if you’ll just poop in the toilet, I’ll take you to the toy store and you can pick out ANY toy you want in the whole store. And get two pieces of chocolate and a circus peanut.”

Day 8: “Hey you like this Jack Sparrow spinning compass toy (on eBay)? If you poop in the toilet, I’ll get it for you.... and let you pick out any toy you want in the toy store... and have two pieces of chocolate and a circus peanut.”

How long before I offer him the keys to the car?

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