A Scolding

Just recently I have noticed that Stella seems to really get it when I’m upset with her.

As a background, I grew up in a house where spanking was non-existent and groundings were rare. If we did something “bad,” my parents had a talk with us about how disappointed they were with us, and we had to then think about the situation and (1) apologize to the person(s) involved, and (2) explain how we would change our actions in the future in order to not disappoint them again. Believe me, as a teenager, that was punishment. — not to mention it made us actually think about our actions.

At any rate, I really like this approach (because I truly believe that violence begets violence), and I hope to parent in a way that is similar to how my parents raised me.

SO, today, Stella bit my nipple while she was nursing. HARD. This isn’t a common problem, but it is a random occurrence, and I always break the seal (FYI – this is important – do not forget to break the seal first or you will regret it!) and then I firmly look her in the eyes with my disappointment face and tell her NO Stella, we do not bite Mommy – that hurts Mommy.

Today that happened, and I saw her bottom lip start to quiver. Then Charlie happened to be walking right behind us (we were seated on the couch) and he bent down and chimed in something along the lines of, “Stella, that hurts Mommy – that is not okay.”

The poor child LOST IT. Absolutely lost it. And then WE felt horrible for ganging up on her and spent the next few minutes hugging and kissing and assuring her that we loved her.

Geez, how the hell are we going to discipline a teenager?!


  1. This totally made me laugh out loud….I so get it. Ironically, Raegan recently bit my boob out of no where…reminder she hasn’t nursed since she was 6 weeks old. I picked her up and held her away from me. Looked her right in the eye and said, NO! We don’t do that. It hurts mommy…and that damn lip quiver thing happened. I nearly lost it. I can only imagine what would have happened if she was the one who LOST IT….we are in big trouble come those teen, years aren’t we?

    1. PS I wasn’t laughing at her biting you because that is not cool…just that I had a similar experience so recently…and those teeth hurt even through clothes…can’t imagine what you felt. OUCH!

  2. She is already not wanting to disappoint so hopefully words will work! Breaks your heart but we’re doing some of that here too with “no” and trying to distract when it turns to tears. But I am glad she got lots of hugs since it was a double dose of “no.” Hard but wonderful work, this parenting business:]

    1. Ya, Charlie felt bad for chiming in b/c he said it “wasn’t his place” to scold in that situation, especially with the lip quiver already going on her part. So much to learn as parents…

  3. It is so hard disciplining when these kids are so cute! I’ve had to help B learn to be firm, even though we don’t need to discipline much just yet. Even though you said Char said it wasn’t his place, I think its great that he had your back. You guys will do great since you’re already on the same team!!

  4. I hear ya. The biting…the crying…the guilt. I hear ya. So far, it’s only me crying when she bites. LOL. But it’s amazing how they know we’re upset with them. It’s important that she learns not to bite you…hopefully she got the message. I LOVE that picture.

  5. You’re learning more about her personality! I had read about kids who cried when their parents told them no. Gracie? Um, yeah right. The nos were pretty rampant when she was about 10-11 months old bc she had just learned to walk, so she was naturally doing a lot of things that weren’t allowed. Every single time we told her no, I’d wait for some sign of her being sad for angering/disappointing us; not once did I see even a hint of it! She usually just smiled, laughed in our face, and did it again :/ And that was when she was still a baby! Now that she’s a toddler, oh em gee.

    1. LOL – ya, that’s often Stella’s reaction (to smile and laugh in our faces), which is why it was so surprising when she burst into tears this time!

  6. Aww poor little thing. It is so tough to scold them and then realize you have hurt their feelings!! 🙁 Alidia bites A LOT right now and just laughs at me when I scold her. Now I think I am in trouble when I get a teenager!! Yikes! Although yesterday when she was going to pull an electrical cable out of a socket (which she loves to do..uggg) my Dad firmly said, “No, Alidia.” to her and she looked sooo sad but then smiled at him, knowing they are buddies who just laugh together so she went for the plug again and my Dad said no even firmer and then she just lost it and looked so hurt that her buddy was speaking to her like that, so like you two, he just had to give her lots of cuddles right after!! Ohh it is tough indeed!

    PS – LOVE your new header photo… it is new right?! You three are gorgeous!! Love Stella’s smile in it! 🙂

  7. Hi Josey,
    We’ve nominated you for the Leibster Blog Award. Am loving your stories!

    Hopefully Stella will have learned that lesson now, and you guys don’t have to put the disappointed face on very often 🙂


  8. Mira also bursts into tears when she’s scolded, and it keeps me from doing it many times. I’ve always been a firm, consistent person as a nanny and teacher, but I think I’m in way over my head with my own daughter!

  9. Lexi has responded this way only a couple of times – and I felt AWFUL! Usually, I have the same problem as Fiona – she grins or laughs when she is scolded. I have to be VERY firm in order to get a response other than a giggle….so frustrating! I am sure, with these reactions, once she is a teenager, we are going to have our hands full!

  10. Ouch! Yah, we have one uber sensitive “cry when we say no” baby and one “laugh in our faces” baby over here. Good times. It’s not easy figuring out the right tone to use to get the point across without making them too upset. A work in progress this parenting thing is! 😉

  11. Ohhh! Poor Stells! Poor Mama! Hopefully she learned her lesson and that won’t be happening again. Like Gemini mama, I’ve got a laugher over here. I try to scold, and he thinks my angry, serious voice is the funniest thing he has ever heard! I have so much to learn when it comes to discipline, not a clue how we’re going to get through to him!

  12. If Chloe is getting into our electronics and JJ is upstairs and can’t get to her quick enough, he’s yelled in his low, daddy voice a few times, and it brings on the tears almost immediately. I on the other hand have tried it a time or too and all I get is laughed at (by Chloe). Either way, I am not looking forward to having to discipline her for anything, but I know it’s right around the corner. We will probably be softies too.

  13. I’ve found that it’s the tone that causes the crying. When I drop something heavy on my foot, I apparently use the same tone because when the kid was about a year old (and a couple of times since, actually), I said “OUCH!” in a similar way and she wailed like I’d shouted at her. Now that she’s bigger, we’re trying to explain that we say things loudly because it hurts and that we still love her but want her to know what the right things to do are and aren’t. Not sure if it’s clicked yet, but at least we’re consistent.

  14. My baby is about the same age. She’s been biting a little bit lately too and I think I have a very similar reaction to you, however the baby’s reaction is totally different —- the latest time I broke the latch, my baby said “nnnuhh” before I even had a chance to say “no.” She isn’t actually talking yet, just talking back. I guess they are really starting to show their personalities.

  15. That’s great that she is starting to get it. When we yell at Taylor “NO.” She gets a big smile and does it again. We repeat “NO”. And she does it again. Then we pick her up and place her somewhere else and THAT’S when she cries….and cries…and cries….and cries. My husband says that drama must be hereditary. 😉

  16. Sofia has only started really reacting to the scolding in the past month or so. Not only does the little quivering lip break my heart, but it also makes me laugh out loud. Not good!!

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