As always, my weekends are just a blast umpiring 4 kids and all the fights and bickering they have. There is an endless line in front of me of kids dobbing on each other and telling tales of how the others are mistreating them or doing something wrong.
I often just ignore them. This only works for so long and then you must act otherwise your free time on the weekend becomes a blur of kids faces and ramblings that are delivered to you in many pitches, variations of volume and sounds that you have never heard come out of a human beings mouth.
Yesterday I was presented with a circumstance that often plagues my family as we have 3 girls in very close age and they have friends the same age as them, or in between each others age. This means that at times they must ‘SHARE‘ a friend! This is generally not possible as the personalities of my 3 girls are so different there is no scope for them to interact nicely with each other when the other girl is say 11, and my girls are 10 and 12.
So when one of my girls ran in to tell me that her sister was playing Minecraft with ‘Her‘ friend and she wanted to ride skateboards, I had no idea what to say. I said nothing for about 1 minute before things escalated. Before I knew it I was being yelled at by both of my daughters to tell the other one off! Also very heated discussions about who was being ‘Bossy‘ and ‘Mean‘ played out in front of me between two very feisty girls. The poor friend just stood there in the middle looking down at the ground and at me waiting for a resolution.
It was at the point that I was told for the 15th time to ‘Tell her off’ from one of my girls to the other that I lost it. S#@t got real! I had to nicely tell the friend to go home before I enacted time out for both girls in their bedrooms for half an hour until they stopped fighting. I was still getting told to ‘Tell her off’ by both girls as they slowly meandered to their bedrooms. I quite simply looked at them and asked very calmly (of course), what in fact they wanted me to tell them off by saying? They looked at me blankly and each other and actually had no idea what I should say to them both. This seemed to calm things down for a while.
So, I went back to watching my TV show in peace and quiet, and about 5 minutes in the whines came from the bedrooms….’Can we come out?’………..