I hate to admit it. But- at least in this area- my husband is right.
After observing a reoccurring pattern of behavior over the past year from Hope, I finally have to admit that after we visit with either set of grandparents, it seems that Hope has to be... deprogrammed.
Honestly, it's not through any fault of my in-laws or my parents. Yes, they're your typical doting grandparents, but they do abide by the rules of the house while they're with us and support my husband and I in any discipline we have to dole out.
Nonetheless, when my sweet, three-year-old daughter finishes visiting her grandparents, I now know we are in for two to three days of over-the-top whining and world class fits. Simple, although irrational, requests turn into all out mother-daughter warfare. Like today at the park. We were just finishing up a visit with some friends, Hope had been having a blast rolling down a huge hill numerous times. I told her it was almost time to leave, so she made her way over to me.
"I'm thi-hsty," she says.
"Okay, you have water and chocolate milk in the car. When we get there, you can choose which one you want."
"I want juice," she counters.
"Sorry, I don't have any juice here."
This doesn't deter her in the least. She only persists, louder, higher, and with longer words, "IIIIIIIII waaaaaaaaant juuuuuuuuuuuuuuuice."
"Hope. We. Don't. Have. Any. Juice." Mommy responds tersely.
Needless to say, Hope's requests for juice only continued to escalate into full on screams, finally culminating in kicking Mommy in the leg for good measure.
The final battle of the war was waged by Mommy pushing a screaming and crying Hope, very quickly, in her stroller to the car where we proceeded home and Hope was put in bed for her nap with no book by a crabby mommy.
A mommy who spent the afternoon shedding tears in her room because she let her three year old get the better of her temper, and disciplined said daughter out of frustration, not love.
A truce was reached by both parties this afternoon when they each apologized, the smaller faction for her words and behavior and the opposing force for disciplining in anger.
Let no one ever say the dethronement process is easy.