Monday, August 23, 2010

The People v. IHPs

I'm done punishing them. They're evil all the time and they do things to deliberately be mean to each other. And what do I get for my involvement, my intervention, my concern and my - ultimately - form of punishment? Scorn, resentment and, most shockingly, a group-therapy session between my kids that now I'm the enemy.

Lefty would do something evil to his big sister McGee, make her cry or whatever. I'd punish him and then she'd go to him when he was crying in his room from my total freak out fest about not hitting or something and be like, "I know. Mommy is soooooooo mean sometimes, isn't she?" WHUCK?! How did I become the bad guy here?

So, I retired. And told them so. And made it clear that, from now on, they. will. be. punishing. each. other. And, they are way more creative than I could ever dream to be.


"In the Indoor Homeless People justice system, the mothers are represented by two separate yet equally important groups: the children, who commit the crime, and their siblings, who prosecute the offenders. These are their stories." [DUN-DUN]

Crime: McGee refused to share a crayon with Lefty during the part in church when they get to do their little kid workbook. Each kid gets two crayons. She didn't want to share red. Even though she had used both Lefty's and Happy's crayons. Then smacked Lefty when he tried to swipe it. Punishment: No communion. Actually, Lefty said "She doesn't get the crackers and juice that we pass around." I said something about his willingness to deny his sister the Host. At church. "Mom, God was a dad. He would have sent her to bed without dinner."

Crime: Lefty ate the last orange popsicle, which are Happy's favorite, after Happy had called it. Happy doesn't like the red ones; Lefty does. Rather than hand it over with one bite taken out of it, Lefty squished it and put it in the trash. Punishment: Sit inside the kitchen cabinet for "two-five-six" minutes. That's actually his favorite TV channel. TwoFiveSix dominates our life. We even call it TwoFiveSix. Feeling rather confident that Lefty couldn't actually spend four hours and sixteen minutes in a cabinet, we opted for two minutes and fifty-six seconds. He banged pots. The. Whole. Time.

Crime: The boys were jumping on McGee's freshly made bed. With shoes on. She told them to get down. Lefty stuck his tongue out at her. Happy took off his shoe and threw it at her head. She forgot to dodge. Punishment: Lefty had to bite his own tongue. [Editor's Note: You stick it out, and someone upsmacks your chin. -Kate] Happy was the unhappy walking target of the Nerf Machine Gun. It holds 40 sponge bullets. She made it last a really long time.

Crime: Lefty was reading a book, and kept asking McGee how to pronounce this word and that word. She was really done helping, but opted -- rather than getting up and leaving the room -- to sigh loudly when he asked her how to pronounce "nervously" and said "Maybe you're just too stupid to read that book." And of all the S words in the world, this one is the Avada Kedavra.

Punishment: Lefty considered duct tape, tobasco sauce and taking her door off the hinges [Editor's Note: One of my finer moments: I had had enough of the pre-teen angst foot stomp followed by door slam...hard to slam a door when it's not there...and it's pretty satisfying to walk down the hallway toting said door and saying, "what is the sound of *nothing* slamming....ahhhh" -Kate] but decided that she wasn't allowed to speak for the rest of the day. It was about 11:30am when this happened. McGee is eleven. She. Talks. All. Day. Long. She gestured at us for a while and then got tired of us making absurd suggestions to what she was trying to say. Like, she was clearly trying to tell us she wanted something to eat, but we were all, "what? Timmy's stuck in the well at Ol' Farmer Joe's?" and would crack up. Then she started writing me notes on post-its. Lefty said that was "talking on paper" and said he should get to read them. And then he'd take the paper that said "Can I go ride my bike?" and clear his throat and say, "McGee says, 'I think a snake is in my shorts'" and hold up the paper like "see?" and she pretty much hated us all for the rest of the day.

The next day she made sure she told us just how horrible we all are. Of course, now it's our favorite punishment. Three days ago, all three of them put each other in it. Lefty for smacking Happy, McGee for laughing at Lefty, and Happy for yelling "shut up! You're in Quiet now!" and making an X with his hands over his mouth, then punching both of them.

They gestured at each other for 10 minutes before I left the room. There was a lot of stomping going on, and a lot of air slamming (two doors are missing...) but no one ever said a word.

It was the best 45 minutes in the history of ever. I celebrated by watching Law & Order. You know...research.

DUN-DUN.


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23 comments:

  1. OMG!!!! I think making the kids punish each other is the BEST IDEA EVER. I can't wait till my kids are old enough to implement this.

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  2. Love it wish my kids were old enough for this.

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  3. Just go buy some lemons-- they have to decide how many segments of lemons a bad behavior is worth. You see, this accomplishes getting more YELLOW fruit in their diet, perhaps a whole serving of fruit (if your children are particularly horrible one day) AND it is freaking hilarious. Completely. Freaking. Hilarious.

    **Oh and a bonus would be that Tom Colicchio would be proud of you working on your skills at supreming citrus all day. (Buy limes if you plan to have margaritas once they go to bed.... see? Functional!)

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  4. I think this is by far my most favorite post.... ever. Well, the open the letter to Elin Woods was AWESOME. This one is AWESOME on a whole new level. The removal of the bedroom door is the most feared punishment in our house. And with a houseful of only daughters... it's going to be GREAT when we put that one into affect. Being a huge L&O fan... I so love your references. Thanks for idea of the kids coming up with their own punishments... I'm going to use that one if you don't mind. Thankyouverymuch!

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  5. This is awsome!! I so am going to use this if we ever have another kid. As our first is just shy of a year it will be a while, but it will so be worth the wait.

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  6. I love it! If I ever had children, I'd adopt this. Your children are hilarious

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  7. I pulled the door off the boys room two years ago and never replaced it. No slamming doors in our house :) And I love letting the kids police each other, great idea. Think I'll start using that one along with my squirt bottle of water. hehehehe

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  8. This is the best thing I have read in my entire life!!!!! I LOVE YOU AND YOUR KIDS!!!

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  9. DUN-DUN

    I am in love with this idea. Hmmmmmm. Wonder how it'll go over in their inevitable therapy sessions in 10 years.....

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  10. Love it. But I know that my kids would use corporal punishment on each other. With weaponry...

    Still, it couldn't hurt to try, right? (at least, it couldn't hurt ME. Heh, heh...)

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  11. Hi.lar.i.ous. Seriously. In some fashion, I will use this with my now 16 month old twins and maybe my now nearly 11 year old if she's not too old for dealing with the kid punishments by the time we implement our version of this. Also, somebody made a comment on therapy later. Yeah. My mom is one of six kids, four girls, two guys. The girls have had a "Sisters" weekend now for four years, this year being the fifth. So, in honor of five years, they've invited the brothers and my grandmother for a five day mini-vacay. Yikes, I'm a little bit afraid for my Mom and my aunts and uncles.

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  12. Now I want to have another kid... just so V has a punisher/punishee! LOVE it!!

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  13. i think my kids at 11 and 12 are too old for this...what if they seriously injure one another...your punishment is...dun dun...well, it could hurt!

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  14. I love, love, love this! And we call it TwoFiveSix, too. That and TwoSixThree get too much air time here. What? Mommy needs time to facebook, kiddies.

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  15. I love it. I can't do this in my house yet because most of the suggested punishments would involve jumping off the roof or various body-part trauma. But good to keep in mind for when they are older.

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  16. i love it. on our 4 and a half hour trip home from cape cod yesterday i stopped interrupting the fighting and let them steel cage match it. there was a lot of pinching and scratching, but the fighting ended much quicker than when i intervene.

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  17. I am not only posting this on FB for all my mommy friends to see(I'm in the process of converting them to RFML mommy's) but will also be doing this in about 2 years when my youngest is old enough to decide punishments....oh it will be wonderful. I'll crack open a T-Box, sit back, and watch it all unfold.

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  18. You. Are. Awesome!! I would have never thought to let them punish each other. I'll be laughing all night! This made my day!

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  19. BrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliantBrilliant.

    You (and I'm not being sarcastic at all) are my Mom Idol. Without a doubt. I worship you.

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  20. LOVE THIS!!!!!!! Love it! S.M.I.L.E. :)

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  21. My jaws hurt from laughing so much.

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  22. I tell you what, it works just as well to make an only child pick his punishment. Or to make one whose 'crime' is against the whole family, or just against the rules pick their own. My mom did it all the time.

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