A few weeks ago, while visiting my in-laws property my son found a wild turtle. He wanted it as a pet, I saw his happy face and excitement. All that happiness and glee until he asked me if he could keep it, and my cold hearted self said no!
Yeah, I say no to my kids all the time (gasp!) It’s as simple as that, or so I thought.
I did explain though, the many reasons why we couldn’t keep it. We didn’t have a special place for it, we don’t know anything about taking care of turtles, it could die without the proper care, and finally it’s not okay to take a wild animal out of its habitat.
He was mad, so mad I got the evil eye.
He quickly went to talk to my husband, who was busy working on a project. Instead of telling him that I had said no, my sneaky son told him that I said it was up to my husband to decide. So yeah, we got played by my son. To top things off, my husband told my son we could keep the turtle.
What the what!!
I was mad thinking that my opinion got totally dismissed, but my husband didn’t understand what was happening. My son was on cloud nine thinking we were leaving my in-laws with a new turtle pet. Until that is, my husband and I had a talk and realized that we had been had by a 6-year-old. We realized the miscommunication, so firmly we both told our son no and made him put the turtle back where he found it.
That’s how I became the bad guy. My son wouldn’t talk to me, tears were shed.
I’m usually that guy , the one that always says “no” even when deep down wants to say “yes”. As a mom I wish I could give my kids what they want, most the time. But we know what would happen if I did. I wouldn’t be teaching them how important is to work for something they really want. I don’t like being the “bad guy”. I don’t enjoy the sad faces and the angry looks. But I know it’s a tough road of learning for both of us.
However, after the kids went to bed I got to thinking that maybe a pet wasn’t such a bad idea (okay, maybe it was more my husband’s idea more than mine). I mean, were my kids missing out on having something to share their love with? This “bad guy” wanted to give in just for once, that way I will get some credit from my kids. The answer was to compromise. So, my husband and I decided that maybe it was time to get a pet after all. Definitely not a wild turtle, but something to help our kids gain a little responsibility and learn to care for another being. So the next day we ended up at PetSmart looking for a hamster. I didn’t realize how much my kids were craving a pet, and they are in love with their new furry friend.
The best part is, that wild turtle has long since been forgotten.