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February 8, 2012

Phone Etiquette

As a general rule, I think my girls are pretty well-behaved. Sure, they test their boundaries here and there – as is their job – but they’re mostly pleasant kids.

The last week and a half, since the floodgates (er, baby gates) came down, there has been more boundary-testing, but that’s understandable. I’ve done my best to be consistent in discipline, while remembering that certain things…like the lure of making laps around the kitchen table…probably just have to run their course.

The one horrific exception to the girls’ good behavior is when I’m on the phone. This has been a challenge to some degree for a while, but – if worse came to worse and I had to answer a phone call – I could step into another room (leaving the girls in their gated safety bubble).

Now, though, all bets are off.

The girls could be playing beautifully, engaged in a great pretend scenario, or reading, or drawing…but the ringing of the telephone often seems like the starting gun of a 100-meter dash.

No sooner have I uttered “Hello” than the girls are climbing on the back of the couch, peeking into a cabinet, or making a run for the stairs.

I know consistency in discipline is important, and my friends and family have heard me “count” the girls – and put them in time-out – plenty of times. I know that the girls need to learn that – even when Mommy has her attention turned – they are still expected to behave as they know how.

But oh, my…we’re just not there yet.

So, friends and family, please forgive me if I’m out of touch. Husband, please understand that no, I still haven’t called the cable company to explore our options.

I’m just biding my time…trying to save myself some drama and keep my blood pressure in check.

And as for nap time? That’s MY time! I talk, and I don’t usually answer the phone then, much less make calls.

It's necessary I save my voice box "to be consistent in discipline" when the girls wake up.


Johanna said...

Mine usually desperately want to have a conversation while I'm on the phone. One that begins "Mommy. Excuse me mommy. Mommy. Mommy. I said Excuse me. MOMMY!" How irritating! :)

But, they are also good for using as an excuse for getting off the phone or as to why I didn't take that phone call...

Deanna said...

I HATE talking on the phone, so it's not usually an issue for us. If someone is on the phone, though, my girls have a burning desire to know who it is. And they can't get the concept of using the word "who" through their heads, so they repeatedly ask, "What's that?". It continues until we remember "what" means "who" and answer them! : )

Helene said...

Most of my friends know I will rarely answer my phone unless it's a life and death emergency. I just hate talking on the phone. I have one friend in particular who will call me just to say, "Soooo, what's new?" and I'm like, "Couldn't you just text me??" I know, so impersonal but I'm so anti-social these days!

My kids do the same thing when I do have to make a phone call though, like when I was trying to schedule a massage the other day. They were all screaming and fighting with one another and the massage lady couldn't stop laughing. She said, "Are you sure you don't want to come in sooner than the 24th? Sounds like you could use some relaxation." O.M.G. how embarrassing.

Marcia (123 blog) said...

LOL at Helene!

I just never answer the phone unless it's convenient (i.e. almost never) but the kids DASH for the phone and I let them chatter away to sales people, etc. Serves them right, don't you think?

Mandy said...

Marcia I LOVE IT! I'm so letting the ladies talk to telemarketers!

I'm not one for the phone so I tend to lock myself in the bathroom when I absolutely must take a call.

cat said...

Oh mine do it all the time. I actually just go to another room which does not stop C coming to look for me in any event.

Julia said...

Oh the phone!

It never fails, I answer the phone, and it seem that in that very moment both girls decided that they desperately NEED me and just can't wait one more second. They also manage to get into whatever it is that they know they aren't supposed to get into. Argh!

Just the other day I was on the phone with a friend (she has three kids), and my girls were being really loud! She laughed, and said her kids were the exact same way--get on the phone, and chaos insues! :)

Someday we'll be able to talk on the phone, while they're awake, in peace :)

Barbara Manatee said...

and this is why I pretty much rely on texts these days and never talk on the phone unless I'm at work or by myself in the car.

Rebecca @ Unexplained X2 said...

I know not of this thing you speak of..."phone?" No, not in my vocabulary.

Anyone who calls me understands that I will interrupt their riveting stories for requests of ass wiping. I will ask them repeatedly "say that again" because there is screaming somewhere in the house. I have also been known to step outside the house (with housekeys in hand) just to have a quiet few minutes.

Hang in there!!!