I don't care what people say about having more than 2 kids. Unless you are mentally insane or just plain stupid, you're out of your mind. If you're not out of your mind, you'll be there soon.
My experience with 4 kids has resulted in me about to kill my 3 year old. Call it what you will: jealousy, territory anxiety, or perhaps the psychological term "pissing contest", my normally mellow, easy going three year old has turned into the child from hell. Or more accurate, he's turning his normally mellow mother into the mom from hell. A few examples that happened in the course of 24 hours. (All had consesquences in the form of time-outs, early bed times or the good ol' fashion "Let mommy hold you on her lap against your will for five minutes until you calm your butt down".)
* He put the stick in the back door, causing Pip and my two wards to burn up in the L.A. heat
* When I said "put the towel on the fence" he threw the towel and walked away
* When I said "sit down at the table for macaroni" he'd advise me that he was "going to the couch to eat hot dogs and watch Scooby"
* When I said he could have a glass of juice, he took Pip's bottle and threw it across the lawn
* When I said "here, play with some bubbles!" he quickly dumped them out on the side walk
* When I said "go to sleep" he promptly arose from his bed, kicked the door and woke his sleeping sister
* When I said "go inside" he went in the house and turned the lock
Maddening is beyond my feeling right now. When the time outs don't work, and you're not about to smack your kid, but Lord knows you want to, what is a mom to do? If I feel this way and I have a supportive husband, financially and emotionally, how is a single mom on welfare supposed to take the higher road?
I encourage everyone out there, struggling with discipline issues, to give consistent consequences, but give yourself a break, too, before you do something you'll regret. And yes, I'm speaking to myself this very moment.
My two neighbor kids and Pipsqueak are now watching Cinderella. I am sure they won't mind me screaming at the screen "Good luck you fake blond, you! Enjoy the prince now, because once you start cleaning the castle and watching Scooby Doo thirty times in a row you'll start to have new appreciation for that sinister step-mom, the bitch."