Life is complicated. Thank goodness there are experts to help us untangle some of the vexing issues that, well, vex us on a daily basis. The Mouthy Housewives are here on BlogHerMOMS to help, three times a week. Email your pressing issues and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org to be answered in exclusive posts on Fridays. Today, we share the newest Mouthy wisdom on offer.
Dear Mouthy Housewives,
My six-year-old has become super sassy in the past few weeks. We’ve only been in school for three days and I’m already getting eye-rolling and a bunch of “whatevers.” It’s making me prematurely grey! How do I stop this so that my sassy six-y-o will make it to her teenage years?
Mom to mini-Miley
Oh, I see. The school is making your angel sassy. Gotcha. Well, how about homeschooling then? Or maybe it’s not so much that she’s enrolled in Eye-Rolling 101 as that she’s picking it up from her friends? In which case, rest assured, this phase shouldn’t last more than a year or two, at which time she will graduate to deep sighing, door slamming and maybe getting a tattoo that most definitely doesn’t spell MOM.
But there’s hope!
When my daughter was seven, she rolled her eyes at her father and me so much that we were concerned they’d get permanently lodged looking into her skull. (Although maybe we were less concerned and more hopeful.) Our friends who’d witness these ophthalmological exercises would smile knowingly and make dire predictions about her teenage years, which I imagine they envisioned as some kind of a Sid & Nancy redux.
Chances are your daughter is trying out some more adult expressions to match her budding independence—she’s in school after all! But it doesn’t mean that you should be treated in a way that you find disrespectful.
I recommend that you put some rules in place. Decide which of her newfound expressions are most inappropriate and tell her that if she uses them, there will be a consequence. Tell her the consequence ahead of time, and then enforce it. If you don’t want a “whatever,” tell her that if she says that very word to you, she will lose screen time.
My story has a happy later chapter. My daughter grew out of the eye-rolling after a few years and is now a delightful tween. Unless, of course, she’s trying to lull us into a false sense of security.
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