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6 Bumps

How to punish them?

Yesterday we ran to the store after the older kids went to school to get a few things. Since we had some extra cash (thanks to our state tax returns coming in) I picked up a few bags of Valentine's candy. Three bags of various kinds of Hershey Kisses and a bag of mini peanut butter cups (my favorite). I had a handful or so of the cups while reading in my room (even gave one to my 4yo as a treat).
When the older 3 came home I opened the kisses as a treat and surprised each kid with 4 kisses, an extra one for my 10yo who was throwing a fit because her brother hurt her (unintentionally even though it was his fault because he was screwing around...he put his arm up to stop her from walking buy and ended up clotheslining her in the throat).
Anyway, the 4yo mentioned the peanut butter cups and then the kids kept asking for them. My son (9) kept joking that he was going to go in my room and find them and I made it clear that they are not allowed in there (standing house rule--our bedroom is kidfree at all times, they have no reason to be in there, ever).
I didn't think much of it until I went to go to bed last night. I had left the bag of peanut butter cups under my pillow tucked between the bed and the wall. I went to move them so they wouldn't get squished and the bag was empty.
I was so upset. In fact I was beyond mad and what I was feeling was just utter sadness. I can't even buy myself a little treat to cheer me up.

I had to avoid them this morning. I waited to leave my room until right before they left for the bus because I didn't want to blow up so early in the morning (I already have a migraine digging in for the long haul). I'm just at the end of my rope. I have no idea which kid did it (probably my son that found it but they probably all ate them). Last time I had kisses in my room they were in my closet and I caught my 10yo eating some and she insisted they were from a friend at school. Later that day I went in my closet and there were just a couple left and I later found all the wrappers in the girls' room. My 4yo says it was the 10yo (who is a habitual liar).

Not sure what their punishment should be this time. Groundings mean nothing to them. They just don't care. My 10yo tells me every day that she doesn't care since she's always grounded for one reason or another and hates me and her life. Obviously they aren't getting any more of the Kisses I bought (as a treat for them, I had planned to put a bunch in little bags for Valentine's even though we don't normally celebrate).
I'm so tired of them going through my stuff. If they know I have something like candy they will dig through every drawer, every nook, every cranny of my room without shame or guilt. They don't care. I hide their DSes in there, too, and they dig through until they find them and then they stay up all night playing them (hence why they were hidden in the first place).
We haven't had snacks or treats in the house in forever because they steal and eat 2 weeks worth in 2 days. I bought crackers and cheese for the Bears/Packers game and 3 days later went to get a few for a snack and all 4 boxes were empty in the cabinet.

Answer Question

Asked by justanotherjen at 11:47 AM on Feb. 2, 2011 in General Parenting

Level 26 (28,174 Credits)
Answers (19)
  • In 30 years is anyone going to care or remember? I think of it that way sometimes: Is it really THAT important and base what I do on that.

    Answer by Zoeyis at 11:53 AM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • I can't think of any effective consequeces but I know if I were in your situation, I'd have a lock on my bedroom door and only myself and my husband would have the key. My kids know they aren't allowed in my room and they're not allowed to eat anything that's not in our specific "treat bowl," except for fruit and veggies that they can have any time they're hungry.

    Answer by ceallaigh at 11:54 AM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • well do the older ones have cell phones?? and if they do do you have a safe or anything that can be locked to where they have no access at all to it? My parents use to lock their bedroom door as well. My sister use to get into everything, so they have a safe they would put things that we werent allowed to have. As well as when I got into trouble and they took something away like my cell or something they would lock it in their safe. That way there is no way that I would ever have a way to get into it.

    Answer by annabelle092810 at 11:55 AM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • It is VERY IMPORTANT that they learn to obey what they're told and to respect other people's property. If she specifically has told them that they are not allowed in her room, then there must be consequences for not following that. In 100 years, probably no one's even going to remember that we existed but that doesn't mean we should just let the kids run wild and do whatever they feel like.

    Answer by ceallaigh at 11:56 AM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • A locked box with a combination sounds like a good idea. And I'd leave that right out in the open, just to perturb them that they can't get into it. LOL!

    Answer by misses_nick at 11:59 AM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • You know, something I ended up trying with my 9 yr old (and yes, this was extreme for me but most things don't work) but she was doing things just to upset me - stealing treats that belong to her siblings, refusing to obey me (particurly when daddy wasn't home), lying, refusing to do homework, etc. SO what I tried with her (and have met with some measure of success) is to stop doing extras for her. I quit doing her laundry. I quit allowing her special drinks, so she's gotten water only (my kids usually drink water, but sometimes they'll get something like kool-aid for a treat), etc. I've made it a point to make sure she understands that I'm doing an extra or someone else is getting a treat but in life, people won't do extra for you if you mistreat them.


    Answer by AAAMama at 12:00 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • Good luck - I'd be angry about this, too. Because, to me, the issue is WAY more than the candy - it's a disrespect for anyone or anything - to me, the blatant disregard for your rules or YOU. They must respect belongings and boundaries - that's a matter of personal respect and basic life issues.

    Good luck mama! :)

    Answer by AAAMama at 12:01 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • The root problem here is that they do not respect you nor your authority, and that's what has to be dealt with. If I were in your position today, here's what I would do. This afternoon when everyone gets home from school, I would sit them all down. I would tell them there are new rules in this house, and I would lay them out for them. The basic premise is that you will do as I say when I say, or you will feel the sting of your disobedience on your bare rear end. Rule # 1 is that you are to stay out of my room. Anything missing from there or found disturbed in there will be reason to assume that all are guilty, and all will have their rear ends lit up. Get you an instrument of discipline, something small and flexible like a ruler. Have them meet you individually in the bathroom and bend over. Start today, since there is some candy missing from your room and you don't know who took it. Be consistent, Be firm! Take control!

    Answer by NannyB. at 12:01 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • The issue isn't taking the candy, it is that they broke a long standing rule and that is direct defiance. If you can't trust them to follow a simple rule like that, then how can you trust them with anything else? I agree with everything NannyB said!! I'd also take away their video games, TV, etc. for a few days. I've been dealing with my children telling a lie the past week. Not only did they get spanked, but I took away TV, Wii and computer privileges. We take lying VERY seriously in our house.

    Answer by Bethsunshine at 12:08 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • I agree wih nanny B about taking control. My parents were big believers in manual labor. Scrub base boards, clean bathrooms, wipe out all cabinets, wash walls. She would wear us out with work if we disobeyed.

    Answer by ria7 at 12:21 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

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