Dear Dave

Friday, 26 September 2008

It's not always about meeting in the middle

Dear Dave,

I was glad I had Sarah around to help the other night. She took Marie upstairs for lights out and a disagreement ensued. Marie point-blank refused to go to bed. If I'd been in charge, I'd probably have lost it with her. My patience is usually running low after a twelve hour childcare shift. I'd have insisted she get into bed. Marie would have insisted on not getting in. Everything would have gone downhill from there.

She's stubborn. I would say it was a phase she's going through but she's always been like that. (My only consolation is that she doesn't throw herself head-first backwards any more when she doesn't get her own way.)

We'd have been there for hours.

Sarah, however, let Marie go to sleep on the floor. Everyone's goals were achieved. As far as we were concerned, she was lying down quietly in a place where she wasn't going to disturb us. Having to sleep on the floor even seemed like a rather severe punishment for not doing what she was told. As for her, she was pleased she hadn't had to go to bed.

She was asleep within minutes.

We tried to move her after half an hour but she woke up and screamed that she didn't want to go to bed. We left her be and she rolled over and went back to sleep.

Then, later, when we weren't about, she got into bed herself. She had her feet at the wrong end, just to make a point, but there was no fuss. It certainly beat the pair of us having tantrums.

Sometimes compromise can take unexpected forms.

Yours in a woman's world,


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