Once again, I'm still watching Peanut. Just a few more days. Don't get me wrong I love this little girl, but some of her attitude has really got me questioning myself.
She has a lot of things going on: starting Kindergarten, mom gone, being 5 and a personal family issue as well. It's a lot for a kid, I get it. But this week has been WICKED! I've sat down and talked to her, I''ve yelled at her, I've taken things away from her, I started the week with the promise of a surprise on Friday if she went all week without an issue at school (yeah, that didn't happen. Monday she had a tantrum at school). She's talking back, lying to my face, thrown an attitude at me over breakfast today.
I finally asked her if she would do this to her mom or other caretakers. Her response? No. Because she knows they won't put up with it. And by not put up with it, I mean spank her. I can not and will not spank her. I know she KNOWS what she's doing is not okay. She's making a conscious decision to do these things.
And it hurts me. It really hurts me, hearing her admit that if I were any other caretaker she wouldn't do this shit! It bothers me that I'm not good enough to respect and listen too. It also hurts me knowing that, if I spanked her she'd listen better. I shouldn't have to raise a hand to her to have her listen to me. She knows what she's doing is wrong and hurtful to me.
And it bother me that the rebellious actions of a 5-year old have me questioning my self-worth as an adult. I thought I outgrew all that shit when I left my parents house. I did act up because I had NO respect for them as parents. But they proved they weren't worthy of my respect. I haven't done anything to earn this child's disrespect. Have I? I'm really not sure. Maybe I'm not stern enough? I follow through on "threats" when she's done something, like have a tantrum at school.
It really bothered me because my own parents didn't feel I was good enough. I was "supposed" to be a boy. I was too smart, it bothered my parents. I knew, from a relatively young age, I'm not the child they wanted. My sister was more like them. She was spared from a lot of anger because of that.
Who knew that a kid, not even mine, would make me feel inadequate as a person. Now I have to see myself as the adult I've become and not let this childish behavior break me. But driving home today, with she and Nixon in the car, I felt the tears thinking of her words this morning. Knowing she doesn't respect me like the other people who've cared for her, made me want to call it a day and just walk away. I'm still here because I promised her mom I would be. I still love this child, but she's got issues I can't even being to understand, and for some reason I seem to have become her outlet.
I'm failing here somehow. I know I am. But damned if I know where or how to begin to fix it....