Losing my cool…

So I’m usually writing about the fun aspects of home educating, with the odd traumatic day thrown in for good measure, but I don’t often write about the days where I lose my cool and wonder why on earth we are doing this!  Last week I had one of those days and have avoided thinking about it too much since. However, I kind of see writing as therapy and figured it was time to get it off my chest…

Our mornings are generally slow and steady as it’s rare that we have to rush out of the house before 10ish. This is one of the lovely aspects of home education (although on those occasional days when you really need to be up and out it’s definitely harder!). So the day I lost my cool was no different to usual; we didn’t have to be anywhere in a rush so the Ps played happily upstairs while I sorted things in the kitchen. Little Piccalilli came down as she wanted her breakfast, but the big Ps continued in their contented play.

As it neared 10 o’clock, and I remembered that we had to be out in half an hour, I called upstairs that it was time to get dressed. Well, you’d have thought I’d just thrown a grenade up there and declared war by the reaction that followed… Suddenly the calm, peaceful morning turned to chaos and the happy siblings turned instantly into enemies. The screaming started, followed by a lot of banging, followed by loud shrieking (which I think was meant to be crying in an attempt to get me to go up). I tried to ignore it initially – isn’t that the done thing? Let them sort it out themselves? Don’t get involved in every sibling battle? Well, after a few minutes of screeching and obvious physical fighting I thought I’d better check that nobody was truly hurt…

When I got to the top of the stairs, Poppet was standing in the middle of the room naked and screaming – Pickle was nowhere near her and I couldn’t work out what the fuss was all about! I lost my cool instantly… I screamed at her to get out. She screamed at me that Pickle had been sitting on her and hurting her (which seems to happen a lot!). I screamed at Pickle that that was inappropriate behaviour. She screamed at me that Poppet had taken her clothes away. I screamed, they screamed, we all screamed… and no ice cream was involved at any point!

losing

I completely lost it; I told them I was leaving; I told them they were going to school the next day; I really lost it…

Thankfully I had a tiny bit of self control left and on hearing Piccalilli downstairs calling for me “Mummy stop shouting”, I realised I had lost it and went downstairs. Piccalilli got me a tissue and we had a big cuddle.  When the big Ps came downstairs they were very remorseful, as was I, and we talked it through.  We discussed why getting dressed and other transition times always seem to be so difficult and we discussed the types of behaviour that we all displayed that was negative and how we should have behaved. We wrote and signed a new family contract and agreed to have another meeting in a week (tomorrow) to discuss how we were getting on.

I am not proud of losing it.  But I am proud of how we dealt with it and turned it around. We are all doing pretty well at sticking to the new family contract but transition times can still be tricky… we’re working on it though!

 

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21 thoughts on “Losing my cool…

  1. You aren’t alone, a few weeks ago we had a text book thrown across the lounge closely followed by a pen…. And that was by me!!! *insert horrified face*
    Never happened before and I hope never again, but hey, we’re only human. We can’t be entirely fabulous 100% of the time! Guess we’re all still learning and frustration can be a big part of it. Hopefully the girls will realise it’s more helpful to get along and do what Mummy says… but then again maybe not. That’s the joy of raising kids 🙂 xx

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  2. You don’t need to feel guilty about what happened at all. We often strive to be perfect in everything and when strong emotions overwhelm us, we feel as if we have failed. Nothing of this kind. If for anything, this situation occurred to probably teach you something, and I don’t mean “teach you how not to lose your temper” but rather “teach you how to be gentle and forgiving for yourself”. And how to be in contact with your own feelings. Every time, remember that what you do is not an easy thing at all. Be proud of yourself 🙂

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    1. Thank you for your kind words. I think you’re right and it has taught me I definitely need to take time out for me every day. Right now I’m sitting here with a cuppa while they watch a film. Just what I needed 🙂

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  3. Don’t feel guilty! We’re only human… 🙂 Everyone has a moment like that once a while and I’m glad you felt comfortable enough to talk about it! Keep up the good work and sharing your stories with us 🙂

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      1. Lorna, you are so not alone in this. Home educating is wonderful but the reality is we’re all together all the time and that can be stressful and lead to even the adults throwing a paddy sometimes. I always feel awful when that happens with my three but I do just what you said, talk it through with them and try to work out how we can make things work better. I find, listening to one of my favourite shows on the radio while I wash up or sneaking to my room to read for five minutes can really help me stay calm. Sharing our stories is really important so that people can see what home educating is really like.

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  4. I think it’s so important to focus on how you followed up the behavior. My parents’ generation would have excused themselves as having the right to do it because they were adults. Like you, I feel it’s incredibly important to admit to our children when we’re wrong and talk through better courses of action. Excellent job1

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  5. It is so totally not just you. I found myself losing it yesterday when I was walking my kids to school. We left later than we normally do and I found myself fussing all the way for them to hurry up. I realized that the time we were leaving just wasn’t going to work for us so I left at my regular time.

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  6. You know what? I’m just going to say it! Mothers get to loose their cool once in a while! There is absolutely no adult that doesn’t loose their cool, and moms do so so so much that sometimes it is okay to loose it (and don’t have any ice cream involved!). Beeing a good parent it’s about how do you handle you loosing you’re cool and not about beeing a impossible human beeing that never makes mistakes. I think that is also healthy children to know that mommy is not perfect and when she makes a mistake (or even when she just loose her cool) she does something about it. Just my opinion tho.

    You’re a great mom (and go get some ice cream in the near future 😉 )

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