Thursday, August 20, 2009

Talk me Down People!

I mean it! Send the intervention team because I am teetering here!

Yesterday the Rhino had a less than stellar day at R.A.T. And when I say "less than stellar" I'm really saying he lost his ever lovin' mind. We won't get into the nitty gritty details but the bottom line is that military school is looking like a real possibility. When I referred to his punishment as "solitary confinement" yesterday I was being kind.

Once I calmed down (close to midnight last night) I worked with his teacher to devise a behavior chart and reward system which we launched today. This week there are cool underpants and ice cream hanging in the balance. Don't think about that too much; it's gross. But now I have to devise some rewards for going forward.

Lion put some time at the driving range on the block since Rhino seems to have an affinity for golf. And we always have good ole Monkey Joe's and Chucky Cheeze that we can put up for bids (although I would rather have bamboo shoved under my fingernails). But even that is only 4 weeks' worth of rewards.

I was commiserating with a friend this morning about the whole deal. In the process of conversation we started talking about our attempts to get some speech therapy for the little guy. Yeah, he's a mess; but he's ours. My pal suggested that maybe if we can get the speech going he'll feel like he's in control of something else and his behavior will start to settle down.

My brain said "hmmm, give him something else to control." And this is where the intervention comes in because the next thing that went through my brain was, "What if I get him a small pet that is his responsibility? His thing to control!"

In an ideal situation, the security dog doesn't eat the new small pet. In an ideal situation Rhino feels a responsibility for his new pal and he feeds it and helps clean the cage and takes care of it. In an ideal situation the girls don't get jealous and demand their own "responsibilities" which (knowing my luck) could lead to more "little responsibilities."

This Zoo is not conducive to "ideal situations."

This is a bad idea, right? I really shouldn't do this. I should just stick to ice cream and M&M's and Happy Meals. Talk me down friends because in my desperation not to be known at the mother of the school lunatic, the idea of a George and Gladys is appealing to me right now.

I should probably go eat. It has to be the low blood sugar talking.


Jennifer said...

Girl! Holy cow! Maybe a fish first... a betta in it's own tiny tank. Then if the girls want one, they can have their own tiny tank too and there's no reproduction going on. Don't start out with a mammal =)

Staci said...

All of our critters seem to be multiplying. I think they've helped with responsibility, but they also make me insane!

Michelle said...

You know, we did hamsters for Christmas. We had to do two because of the jealousy factor. This summer one decided to become a bully and the weaker of the two died. It was a rough week with lots of tears. If something like that happened his behavior would get even worse. I think a fish that can easily be replaced without much notice is the best bet too. Think long and hard about this one.

Help him feel in control of other things. For example, give him 3 options for outfits and let him pick out what he wears. Let him pick out what goes in his lunch box. Let him pick what veggie you have to go with dinner. THere are all kinds of smaller decisions you can let him make to feel in control.

Know that you will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Amanda said...

I firmly believe in punishments and rewards that do NOT punish ME in the process. Then the point is lost.

I'd stick to trips to the park, an extra dessert, staying up a little later (On a weekend night), an extra story, maybe some extra one on one time with his parent of choice, etc.

Linda @ My Trendy Tykes said...

ROFL! I like Amanda's response.

My kiddo wants a dog for christmas. I am searching for a house-trained, shedless, barkless, poopless one....Know where I can find one??