What parent has never heard of Supernanny? What parent hasn’t at some time put her ‘tips’ into practice, I know I have.
She graced our screens with a magic like ability to tame the most persistent of ‘non-listener child’.
She made it look easy. Persistence was key, I was very persistent and spent many days & nights persistently pissed off that her advice wasn’t working for me.
I stumbled across her website the other day and laughed and read her ‘Top Tips’ aka ‘obvious information’.
Below is a snippet of her ‘Top Tip’. Her advice is in bold the rest is how we roll in the Buck Stops Here house.
For some children “no” can be the default position when asked to do things. Below are some tips to encourage your child’s cooperation.
“Clothes on the floor don’t dry very quickly”
Firstly drop the fancy wording ‘default position’. The above paragraph should read “for some children “no” is the ONLY answer you will get when asking them to clear up their shit. On a good day you might get a false promise of “in a minute”.
The one thing that we (Supernanny & I) agree on, probably the only thing we agree on, is yes clothes don’t dry on the floor. The problem is my kids think they do, in fact they believe all clothes wet or dry actually belong on the floor.
I do, as she advises, give lots and lots of information to my kids, my problem is they don’t bloody listen. I constantly brief them with all the necessary information like “rubbish goes in bins”, “plates don’t belong in your bedroom”, “if you use it put it back” I even let them know how things work such as the dishwasher even what a linen basket is for.
Unfortunately, Supernanny this ‘tip’ doesn’t encourage any co-operation, what-so-ever. What it does encourage is smart answers and long debates about whose responsibility it is and a million reasons why it’s not theirs.
I question where the responsibility buck stops, my teenage daughter believes 100 percent it’s mine as I’m the parent, the one who chose to have kids. As with all problems that aren’t mine it’s all about time, the length of time before they become mine.
Supernanny goes on to suggest you need to:
Describe how you feel
“I don’t like hearing whinging”
“It bothers me when I see clothes on the floor”
Again, I can tick the box here. I always describe how I feel with no problem relaying this to them. Venting such frustrations in a calm tone and in full view NOT from another room (as championed by Supernanny) usually results in…err…..umm…………..nothing.
So, I’m sorry Supernanny, forgive me, but in this house shouting from other rooms is the norm as I flit through each one dodging discarded items all over the floor.
Repeating ‘information’ in a calm tone whilst fully visible to my kids surprisingly results in jack shit.
So, what have I learnt from this very handy Supernanny tip? In one word nothing. The hard reality of parenting is basically no one listens. No, to be fair they do hear me the eye rolling always confirms this. Just like her TV programmes her ‘parenting’ techniques rarely works. I repeat, RARELY works.
Her tips/programme are all great in theory or when you are rubbing your pregnant belly dreaming about the parent you will be.
I’ve long forgotten what parent I thought I would be, but I vaguely remember
believing joking my kids would never be the boss of me! #deluded.
So I hear you ask what would be my top tip for Supernannys default position ‘No’: It’s simple when shouting, swearing, empty threats are all done, unplug the wi-fi and let’s see who starts listening!
Next week – How to get your kids to do the chores. Scrap that, you can’t.
Might have to rethink next weeks!