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Melt down at the fish store...do you think I handled this right?

We have an aquarium and buy fish for it from time to time. I promised my son that we would go look and probably buy a few fish. And that he could pick them out.

Of course, some fish in the store wont go into our tank b/c they are either aggressive type fish or get too large or are saltwater fish.

So....I showed my son (6 years old ) which tanks he was able to choose from ....about 5 or 6 different tanks with different fish in them.

We stood forever and looked...he kept going to the other fish that we can not have. I kept explaining why it was a no on those fish...he continued...I told him to decide b/c I had cold groceries in the car and we had to leave soon.

He continued begging for the other fish.

So finally I told him his time was up and we left. he cried all the way home.

Was I a mean mommy? I just felt like he was being greedy in a way...wanting everything he cant have...but nothing he could have. y

Answer Question
 
Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 3:08 PM on Mar. 19, 2010 in Just for Fun

Answers (11)
  • Were you mean? Um, no. You were not. You have to set limits. He is old enough to follow directions, you gave him directions. So what if he cried. He did it in hopes you would let him get the fish he wanted. No, you were not mean.
    Raine2001

    Answer by Raine2001 at 3:11 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • At age 6 he is old enough to understand what he can and can't have. Sure, the salt water and aggressive fish are pretty, but short of installing a saltwater tank (which is VERY expensive and requires a TON of maintenance), you're not being a "bad mommy!" I would tell your son, that unless he can abide by the choices, he will not get to come and pick out fish with you anymore--you'll just do it yourself!
    LoriKeet

    Answer by LoriKeet at 3:13 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • I agree w/ Raine, having a 6 year old myself. He knew. If it makes you feel any better, we've had similar experiences in toy stores. Like there's SO much good stuff he cannot accept the choice of the item that costs only $25 and not $100 so we leave.
    jeanclaudia

    Answer by jeanclaudia at 3:13 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • You did the right thing.
    momjoy1027

    Answer by momjoy1027 at 3:19 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • you did the right thing. you cant always play the good guy if you want your kid to be reasonable.
    AmaliaD

    Answer by AmaliaD at 3:21 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • Good job, momma! That's how you do it. =] How else will they learn? Limits are necessary!
    ajtherad

    Answer by ajtherad at 3:30 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • I wish more people would do what you have done: showed your child that there are boundaries and if he chooses to go outside those boundaries, he will have to deal with the consequenses. You aren't mean. You are a wonderful mom.
    companygoddess

    Answer by companygoddess at 3:30 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • I ABSOLUTELY think you did the right thing. I think maybe what he was doing was human nature, but it's all one of those lessons to be learned.
    your story brought a smile to my face. My mother used to give into EVERYTHING, particularly by baby brother (think he threw the best fits. :) If that had been my mom, she wouldn't have bought a whole other tank and set up to put the more aggressive fish into! too much!

    I still remember the day I came home from work and the TV room floor was taken up by a big race track- exactly like the one that my mom has always told me I couldn't have because we 'didn't have room' - she'd chilled out a lot over the years. My mouth dropped open, my mom said "I know!" and shrugged-
    What could I say really? by then I was 24 years old- but I did insist on playing with it too! :)

    maybe when he gets older he can have his own fish tank for the More aggressive fish ;)
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:38 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • You did the right thing. Sometimes kids cry and that's ok. As parents, it is not our job to be concerned with their fleeting happiness, but what is good for them in the long run. Learning and accepting what he cannot have is good for him, trust me! Score 1 for you. Maybe take him back another time later on and he can get his fish then.
    danielp

    Answer by danielp at 4:01 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

  • No, you put your foot down. You had already told him you were going to leave, and he had to hurry and you had already told him several times (very nicely IMO) what he could not have and why. IMO you were being a very good mom in the way you reacted.

    You have not said you will never get fish, or return. You have however just taught him that if he throws a fit and demands something he knows he can't have then he won't get anything. Maybe if you still want to do fish, but don't want to go to the store right away, make him do online research at home with you on what fish are and aren't acceptable for your tank and why. I'd also reiterate to him that you as his mother that loves and looks out for him always, has a reason for what you say and do and that he should respect not question or fight that.
    Knightquester

    Answer by Knightquester at 4:38 PM on Mar. 19, 2010

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