This morning at 3:30 am he reminded us of our duties when he woke up crying. When I went to ask him what he wanted Braden replied, "I want sleep Daddy's bed." On a side note Braden thinks the couch is my bed. Not because I am frequently in the doghouse, but because that is where he gets to sleep with me on those particularly difficult nights.
This time I told him no to Daddy's bed. Then I rubbed his back until he went back to sleep. Thankfully that only took a few minutes. Because any more difficulties would have required me to call in the big guns. At our house we call her Mom.
Arica can get Braden to do most anything. She has her bluff in on him. She threatens and he moves. She can threaten time outs, naps, taking away toys, turning off the TV, and other things. Even when those threats are met with the utmost dissension, she eventually wins out. Of course it is not always threatening that works. Many times it is a simple explanation that gets Braden's approval. Other times it is redirecting his attention to something else. Arica is a master of all these techniques.
On the other hand I am a master of none. My threats carry the weight of a feather. Even when I carry them through I can't get the desired result. Braden has actually started to respond to me a little better. Sometimes he knows I mean business. But most of the time he either carries on like I'm not there or he digs in and argues ferociously. If you've never seen a 2 year old argue with a 33 year old then consider yourself lucky. It is not a pretty sight.
During these most difficult of times I do have one weapon. When Braden is being difficult for some reason Arica can go to her bag of tricks for reason, punishment, or distraction. I am not so lucky. In my tool box there is but one tool for sticky situations. When the going gets tough, you know what I do?
This is certainly not award winning parenting, but you do what you have to do. I can't succeed at any of the typically prescribed disciplinary methods, but man can I tickle a frown away. It's fun for now, but I better get some chops before Braden reaches high school. I can't see tickling as a proper method for handling any of those teenage problems.