This is the story of The Boy Who Cried Mommy…
Once upon a time there was a sweet little boy, just about a year and a half old. He was very agreeable, and rarely put up a fuss over going down for a nap or going to bed. But one day, when his mommy was out running errands and Daddy was in charge, he cried, “Mommy!” shortly after going down for his afternoon nap. Daddy stood outside the boy’s closed bedroom door and listened as screaming waxed and waned, wondering if he should go in or let the boy cry it out. Daddy determined that if the boy was really in need of assistance, the crying would be constant. Within 10 minutes, the crying had ceased and naptime continued as usual.
But when Daddy went into the bedroom at the end of naptime, he found that the boy’s leg was caught between two bars of the crib. The sleep sack the boy was wearing had bunched up, making it difficult for even Daddy to get the boy’s leg free. But the leg was soon free, and no major damage had been done.
Two nights later, about 30 minutes after bedtime, the boy cried “Mommy!” once again. Mommy rushed to the bedroom door and listened to him cry. Could his leg possibly be stuck again? There was only one way to find out. Mommy entered the room, to find the boy’s leg once again stuck between the bars. She quickly freed it, gave the boy a reassuring hug and a kiss, and closed the door behind her as she left. All was quiet until morning.
But the “Mommy!” crying continued for several more nights. Each time, Mommy went in to rescue the boy’s leg; however, each time proved to be a false alarm. Neither leg was stuck, and the mommy had been fooled. After Mommy left the bedroom, the crying would continue, getting louder and lasting longer night after night.
Finally, the mommy decided that this pattern had to be broken. She remembered the Three Day Rule that she had learned from another MOT during the infant days. Simply put, the Three Day Rule states that when changing a routine or implementing an intervention, the same actions must be taken for three days before making any further adjustments or changes. Mommy decided that, no matter what, she would not enter the room after all the good nights had been said. It was tough to listen to the boy scream, “Mommy! Mommy!”, but she was pretty sure that the boy was not in need of rescuing and knew that going in would not be helpful. The first night, the crying was loud and long, but each night after the crying lessened, until finally the boy cried “Mommy!” no more.
The moral of the story: Kids are wicked smaht, but mommies are even smarter.
How have your babies or kids tried to outsmart you? How did you handle the situation?