The Two Stages Of Parenting

I’ve been a parent now for 10 years.I was slightly disappointed to find out there are no gifts or rewards for reaching this milestone.

Especially as you consider I’ve managed to keep all the kids alive, with all major organs and limbs intact!

I’ve discovered that there are Two different stages in parenting.

  1. Stop / You can’t 
  2. Why didn’t you  / Why can’t 

I’ve listed some examples from both stages below.

Stop Doing  / You Can’t


Stop putting your hands in the toilet! (Can also be amended to: Stop putting your head in the toilet!)
Stop climbing on (insert any piece of furniture here!)

Stop writing on the walls, the floor, your brother!

Stop peeing on your brother!  (I actually said this!)

You can’t pee here! (frozen section of tesco, or any one of a thousand other places my sons have been ready to pee)

Don’t pee in the bath.

Don’t drink the bathwater. Normally straight after the one above.

You can’t go down the stairs on your skateboard!

You can’t ask Santa for a pet tiger! (Elephant, hippo, giraffe or any one of a hundred different wild animals!)

You can’t fly! (Cue much distress, tears and foot stamping)

You can’t go outside in just a nappy and wellies!

You can’t go to school dressed as Batman! (But you can go to Tesco, the shops, park and pretty much any other public place dressed as Batman)

You can’t give your brother to the charity shop!

You can’t sell your brother to Cash Converters!

Then suddenly out of the blue you move to stage two. 

Why didn’t / Why can’t 


Why didn’t you do your homework?
Why can’t you put your plate in the dishwasher?

Why didn’t you give me the note from school. (Last week when you got it. Not the night before wear green for Paddy’s Day?)

Why can’t you make your own bed?

Why can’t you act your age?

Why didn’t you lift the toilet seat? (Having three boys I utter this 20 times a day!)

Why didn’t you put your sports kit in terms washing basket if you wanted it washed?

This is only a small sample. I’d be here all day if I wrote the complete list. Now I’ve pee to wipe off the toilet seat again!!

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16 thoughts on “The Two Stages Of Parenting

  1. Must be a boy thing. Mine “go” up against the side of the house as I’m putting the key in the door after the school run. We’ve also got the cleanest car tyres in the country!! I also caught one of them on the top of the stairs on a Y bike ready to let rip. Straight through the window on the half landing. They always drink the bath water! There’s always wee.

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  2. Urgh – the toilet seat one! I am at the stop phase still. So I am always shouting things like “Stop licking the window”, “Stop hitting your sister over her head with Buzz” and ” stop jumping on your sister she isn’t a trampoline!” I am gutted that we don’t get anything at 10 years. I’ve been aiming for that! Surely we should get a telegram from the Queen! #FridayFrolics

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  3. Not sure if mine have hit the teenage stage years before their time cause I’m defo at both stages. ‘No, you can’t feed your sister to the dog’ & ‘STOP shoving your jam sandwich into the DVD player FFS’. Yeah, it never ends!!! Great post.

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