It has been one of *those* days. The ones where I wish I was actually at work because I can't handle it here. I don't know what I'm doing wrong but my girls, the Elfling in particular do not respect their belongings. She will be 5 in a little over a month and it is still an every day occurrence for her to break something or to destroy something or to make a mess that I have just cleaned up. Take today, I picked up and sorted out the same 3 fifty piece puzzles twice. After all this, after making her sit on her step (and then after she screamed from the step her room) she again tipped out the 3 puzzles onto the floor. Not to play with them, just making a mess.
The carpet has mud all over it. Even after being put on the step and then her room multiple times she continued to carry water from the kitchen to the garden and make mudpies then trek it back through the carpet. Once I could understand, multiple times and I wanted to break something myself. I even smacked her. Nothing. She still doesn't get it.
I took a large box today and put everything that has been over the floor that she has been warned to pick up into it and am giving it to charity. She lay on the floor and screamed about me doing it but she did not pick up a single toy. Just yelled back at me. Trying to rationalise it. No progress.
I hate cleaning. I hated cleaning while I was a stay at home mum and I hate it more now that we have so little time. I want the weekend to be a nice time to spend with family and yet here I am again in tears because the Elfling has no respect for her belongings, for her role in the family, for rules or me at all. I don't know what to do. She breaks so many things, I know most is out of curiousity but she has no concept of consequences. Compared to other people I know we are so strict with her and she still lives in this complete daydream.
She cried herself to sleep tonight because we would not read her books before bed. This is one of our most dire consequences because we know it breaks her heart. And yet the threat of doing this makes no difference. She was yelling at Bingley as he walked out of the room that she really really wanted books. But the correlation between her behaviour today and the books does not click for her. The answering back and the constant whining are making me insane. There is no "currency" nothing that seems to help. I try to do the praising when she is doing the right thing, and the Monkey is going really well - her currency is easy, with the Elfling though nothing is working.
It's so hard because when she stays with other people we are told that she is lovely and helpful and polite and yet with us she screams, yells and is completely disobedient. About the only thing that seems to have made her think about her behaviour is seeing me cry this afternoon which completely distressed her. I don't cry in front of her and normally I would not do it at all but tonight I just couldn't help it. I cracked and I'm lost and I give up. I just don't know what to do.
I am terrified of giving up work and having to deal with her every day. Becuase I don't know how.
How sad is that.