Caitlin has been testing Jon and I quite a bit lately.
She obeys when it suits her. We've tried everything we can think of and nothing has worked so far.
Today was about the last straw. We have a rule that you can't touch anything on a counter without permission. This rule covers all sorts of things and has kept us from quite a bit of stress.
But Caitlin completely disregards this rule if she chooses. Today she grabbed a pair of scissors on the counter. I spanked her hand for touching them and put them further back on the counter. I turned back to the sink to finish the dishes. She left the kitchen and wandered into the library (or so I thought). A few seconds later she comes back into the kitchen.
"Mommy, I cut bear-bear's tail and I can't fix it."
She takes me into the dining room where she has hidden under the table with her bear and the scissors. Bear-bear now has a very injured tail.
I started getting onto her about hurting bear-bear and she laughed. She had gotten what she wanted and just didn't care that I was upset. So I threw him away. The kids know that if I can't fix a toy it goes in the trash. So far, they haven't been highly sentimental so it has worked fine.
When I threw him away she laughed again and said
"That's okay, I'll just play with this bear."
Now it's bedtime and she's not laughing. She's been crying now for 30 minutes. It seems harsh, but I'm just not sure how else to reach her. I've gone in once and comforted her. But I also explained that when I tell her something she needs to obey. I'm hoping that this painful of a lesson will sink in, because I'm about to cry with her.
Before I begin to get hate letters, let me assure you that bear-bear is safe in the closet awaiting morning. After we talk again I'll give her back her bear.