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Lynda Loveland: Respect

Posted June 20, 2012

Lynda Loveland

My kids are learning to respect their elders. But how do you teach them to have respect for “stuff?"

Here’s a glimpse into the afternoon that gave me a “Hulk” moment:

My two older kids, ages seven and eight, were watching TV after soccer camp. I was letting them chill because they were pooped and that allowed me to get some housework done.

The first time I checked on them, Campbell was making something out of paper for her brother. Small, cut pieces of paper littered the family room floor. I said it was nice of her, she just needed to be responsible and clean up her mess afterwards.

I came back a little later and noticed wet, small, cut pieces of paper on the floor. I was a little puzzled. I glanced at the TV and something looked strange. I turned it off and what did I find, spit wads! Several of them, stuck to the TV!

If they weren’t going to take care of the TV then they weren’t going to watch TV. Poof! Gone for one week. Told them to clean up and I’d be back in five to inspect.

I came back only to find the rest of the unspitified paper shoved under the ottoman. Upon further inspection, I found two Popsicle wrappers, still cool to the touch, under the sofa next to my son. Poof! Banished to their rooms. I could feel the seams of my shorts straining as my inner Hulk started growing.

Seconds later, I walked into my bathroom and discovered half a roll of toilet paper, shredded, on the floor. This was Campbell’s MO. I went to her room and asked her what happened in my bathroom. She replied, “I bet Halee (our dog) got the toilet paper.”

To which I replied, “who said anything about toilet paper?” Busted! She finally admitted she tried to make a cast. And Hulk grew.

As I walked back to my bathroom I hear my son hollerin’ for me from his bedroom. Said he spilled something. Hulk grew more. Got to his bedroom and found he spilled blue hand soap all over my freshly cleaned carpet.



We’ve made them clean, repair and pay for things they’ve damaged around the house, but it just doesn’t seem to work. The week of no TV seems to be working so far. Maybe I should make them sleep in a tent in the backyard for a week.

How do you teach your kids respect for your home and things?

Lynda is the mom of three and co-host of Mix 101.5 WRAL-FM's Bill & Lynda in the Morning. Find her here on Thursdays. Click here to find her on Facebook.


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  • lec02572 Jun 22, 2012

    You are not alone. My wife and I have rasied three children, two sons and a daugher, who is getting married next month. The thing that I now enjoy most is hearing my two sons complain about their children not having respect for the house. It all comes back on them. I call it the parents revenge. I can't wait until my daughter is happily married and in a couple of years has a child and my revenge will be complete. Good luck, as it was only after my kids got their drivers license and were not around the house as much that they began to respect the home a little more because they brought friends over.

  • hmmmmm Jun 21, 2012

    Are you sure these aren't my kids we are talking about?

  • asphinctersayswhat Jun 21, 2012

    CD - Again, MY life, MY kids, you should stop worrying (i.e. commenting) about it and move along.

    JAT - Simmer down and you people are simply phrases of speech. Maybe it would go over better if I phrased it hold your horses and y'all or hold up and yous-guys? I haven't insulted you by calling you names not knowing who you are behind the keyboard, have I? It is MY opinion and MY life. Never did I say it was what the masses should do or that "one way is the right way". If I'm not mistaken, I am allowed an opinion and a viewpoint without someone harping on it. Oh, and I'm not your friend and I didn't imply anything. I stated a fact. I guess if I cared enough to, I would get my own knickers in a knot because you've "implied" my kids are doted on and spoiled because I choose to be at home with my kids in lieu of going off to work and paying for someone else to care for mine. It would be awful nice if you peo...oh, sorry...folks would let it go and move along. Nothing to see here.

  • auction229 Jun 21, 2012

    "If kids are raised by loving, attentive, devoted parents, it doesn't matter where they spend the hours between 8 and 5."

    Hooey. One of the biggest factors of parental failure today is the parents not spending time with their children. In large part, many children are simply dropped off at daycare or school, then picked up when the time comes. Many times, the time spent with parents at home includes bath time, dinner, and getting ready for bed. This doesn't make bad parents or bad children. It just means that kids aren't as respectful and don't learn the same robust morals and values. Many are being raised by strangers at the daycares and schools, and not by the parents as they should be. Again, this doesn't point to failure. It's just today's society.

    It DOES matter between the hours of 8 and 5 WHOM your children spend their time with. If it has to be daycare or school - it is what it is. But to say that the luxury of parental guidance over daycare is not valid is foolish.

  • asphinctersayswhat Jun 21, 2012

    JAT -

    Simmer down, simmer down. Stop throwing around the words pompous and disillusioned when you don't know me. I simply STATED A FACT that pertains to MY life. Another poster made a comment that referred to me and inferred that MY kid's teachers must love me because I don't take their things away as punishment. An action that I personally believe isn't a viable punishment and don't use as such. Since you've decided to make me the focus for your diatribe I will say it again: I do take care of what is mine and I am proud of it and my kids. It's our choice that one of us stays at home to be with them. I didn't start yapping about anyone who chooses to use daycare. You people decided to focus on that particular sentence and get on your knickers in a twist. You people are making it about being at home vs. being at work. I know my kids are better off because I am home, but I'm not standing on a soapbox attacking those who choose a different path. Get over it, already.

  • snowl Jun 21, 2012

    I think you're doing it correctly, Lynda. Be consistent with your expectations and follow through with punishments when a fair warning has been established. Your kids DO get it, they are testing you just like normal kids do. And that "Hulk" persona is something they should see now and again to let them know "who's the boss"...:)

  • joyfloyd67 Jun 21, 2012

    Lynda, you write soooooooo well..This blog really touches my heart...You are doing exactly what you should be doing with your children...and believe me teaching respect for their own property will surely ensure respect for others property...That lesson cannot come too early. I am 63 now, and have the guidance continues and you will never regret how you are handling this situation...Keep the faith and you won't be HULKING forever..I hope you are saving these blogs about your children...they will love reading them when they become adults..

  • Not Now Jun 21, 2012

    Respect for stuff comes from earning the stuff in the first place. My stepson is not as well off as his cousins, and he sees first hand how they don't treat their toys/electronics well. As far as they're concerned, if it breaks, Mom and Dad (or Grandma/Grandpa) will get new ones. For my stepson, he has to wait to earn enough money to buy it himself, or he has to wait for Christmas/birthday/major milestone to be given something. Knowing something won't immediately be replaced if it breaks is a good motivator to taking care of his stuff. He is also good at managing his money and saving for what he wants.

    Commence flaming...

  • asphinctersayswhat Jun 21, 2012

    "oh I bet the teachers love you!"


    Actually, they do :-) None of my kids are trouble makers and the older three (my youngest doesn't start until August) have all been tested and classified as academically gifted by the school system and are given differentiated school work. They're all ahead of their grade level by at *least* 1 grade, with my 4th graders abilities currently at a 10th grade level. I am a stay at home Mom so they aren't shoved into a daycare where others take care of what is mine. I've raised them to be decent kids, not hooligans. It's not a matter of them being brats or letting them run wild, it's about letting them be kids. Mine know what's expected of them, I've taught them right from wrong and respect for their elders, teachers, LEO's, etc. Sooooo, my not taking their things away equates to them being unruly, little brats in their classrooms? Not something I've had to worry about because I've done, and continue to do, my job with my kids, quite well.

  • NiceNSmooth Jun 21, 2012

    I don't believe in taking their things away to punish them for being mischievous or for what I would consider lesser offenses.

    oh I bet the teachers love you!