Monday, April 29, 2013

Morning Routine Decision: A Good One or Bad One?

I'm going to give y'all a parenting problem I am currently facing, then I'd love your opinions and feedback!!

I'll paint the picture: The kids' school starts at 7:40am. We live 1 block from the school, so the kids walk each morning. They have gotten into the habit of leaving here at 7:10 in the morning and heading over to one of The Girl's friend's houses, waiting for her to get ready, and then the 3 of them walk to school together.

Yes, this friend is the same little rude one I've been constantly writing about lately. She has control issues,
Courtesy of Healthy Vending

In the afternoons, The Ginger comes home and complains about how long it took The Girl's friend to get ready in the morning, how they are almost late for school, and how he hates waiting on her (we have the rule that The Girl and The Ginger must walk to school together). I'll admit now that I hate that, too. I can't stand that my daughter leaves the house 30 minutes before school starts just to wait on an inconsiderate, rude friend of hers to get ready. PLUS, the friend's house is NOT on the way- they have to walk to the end of the street instead of just heading straight to school.

This morning, The Girl calls me at 7:30 on her way to school (20 minutes after she left the house, which means they waited on her friend for 20 minutes), to say that The Ginger got mad at how long they were waiting and walked off to go meet up with his friends, but he and his friends weren't walking toward school, they were just standing outside the school talking.

Okay?!?!?! And I'm supposed to be doing what about this? I asked if he was trying to skip school, and she said no. I asked if he was going to school, and she said yes. So, I totally didn't understand why she was calling me to tattle on her brother.

When they got home from school a little while ago, I got the full story, and what appears to be an every-morning thing. The Ginger gets pissed at having to wait on The Girl's friend, so he walks off (breaking our
rule) to walk with his friends, but then they end up lollygagging outside the school until the bell rings, which makes him late, which he, in turn, blames on The Girl's friend instead of his own friends.

Didya get that?

She called me this morning to tattle as a preemptive strike, so when The Ginger came home this afternoon and complained about The Girl's friend making them late, I would know that it was indeed his friends that made him late and not The Girl's friend.

I'm listening to this, and in my mind, I don't give a shit whose friend does what. My kids make the decisions that lead to them being late or not being late. The Girl makes the decision to wait on her rude friend, and The Ginger makes the decision to lollygag with his friends. The solution immediately popped into my head:

From now on, my kids will leave the house around 7:30, bypass walking with any friends, walk straight to school, just the two of them, so if they are late, the only people they have to blame are themselves. 

The Ginger is happy. He doesn't care about walking with his friends, honestly, he just knows that now he doesn't have to wait on The Girl's friend. The Girl is pissed as hell at me right now. She doesn't understand why she's "getting punished" for The Ginger walking off and making himself late for school. She doesn't remember that I've had numerous talks with her about not waiting on her inconsiderate friend, and how she needs to worry about herself and her brother and that's it. And, she doesn't see that my solution is the only one that keeps my family adhering to the rules that we have set and focusing on what they need to do without worrying about outside people.

And, if this disrupts The Girl's friend's morning agreement that she has set with her family (like, she has to walk to school with someone and not by herself), then she is more than welcome to meet my children at OUR house at 7:30 and walk directly to school with them.

How do y'all weigh in on this subject? Am I being a selfish, bitchy mom? Should The Ginger have been reprimanded for his behavior while The Girl continued with this morning routine as it was? Is there another solution to this that I can't see because my blood is boiling right now? Let me know in comments below!!

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  1. I totally agree with your decision! I think it is spot-on. The only thing I would add is maybe a one on one conversation with The Ginger, reminding him that the rules are for his and his sister's safety, and even though yes it's frustrating as all get out to wait for this snooty booty girl, walking off on his own still isn't an option. Good job!

    1. Completely forgot to do that, lol. Thanks for the reminder!! :)

  2. red haired guy from fb xDApril 29, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    what I would've done just to piss them off is taking them to school myself. nothing is more annoying that you're own mother taking you to school when you live so near. it looks like you don't have any freedom. I'm just mean; so in order to be just a good mom you did what you had to do. so keep on and don't feel like a bitchy mom xD

    1. Oh, that's on the docket if they can't accept this new rule. Plus, I'll hold hands with them and wear my pajama pants and fuzzy slippers, while skipping and singing showtunes.

      It's on if they don't start acting right... ;)

  3. If it was any other friend other than that girl I'd say it was overreacting but obviously there's an issue with her (I'd never make my girlfriends late while I toodled around with my thumb up my butt). I think a separation from this young lady would be in everyone's best interests.

    1. It's definitely coming to that. Hubby and I were just talking about that this evening...

  4. I think you did exactly what I would've done. I do agree up above about giving Ginger a little individual talking to aswell.

  5. I think you made the right choice! Even though The Girl didn't do anything this time, she's having a pattern of being almost late due to waiting on her friend. If The Girl's friend wants to walk with her so badly then she can walk up to your house to meet her. It's on the way to school! It makes more sense than your kids having to walk in the opposite direction.