Gimme, Gimme Never Gets; Or Does it?

Many, many years ago I worked at a local drug store. Something happened on a daily basis that just drove me crazy. The gimmes. You know what I'm talking about, we've all seen it. The child in the toy section who throws a tantrum when they don't get the toy they want or the child that wants the checkout candy.

You wouldn't believe the number of parents who would give ME heck by saying,"I don't know why you put the candy down low where the kids can see it." I would usually shrug it off but, I really wanted to say, "Look people! I'm here to ring your purchases up, I don't plan the layout of the store. Maybe, just maybe the problem is YOU."

I vowed from that day on that when I had kids I would not play this game and I don't. Kids are smart, they know that if they bug enough the parent will usually cave in just to keep them quiet. The trick is to never give in, stay strong. Yes the first few times may be hard but stick to your guns!

I recall going through this with one of my kids.  She wanted something and was starting to throw a fit.  I brought her to a quiet corner of the store, got down to her level and told her that her behavior  was unacceptable and I knew that she could behave a lot better then that.  I told her we would stay in that corner of the store until she calmed down and it didn't take long.

Did I want to scream?  Sure I did.  But by remaining calm I diffused the situation and that was the end of it.

Why am I talking about this?  Last night we were at the drugstore and my daughter was looking at a Christmas colouring book.  She loved the pictures and told me which ones she would colour first.  I know that we have one Christmas colouring book at home that's almost full so I asked her how much it was.  She told me it was $3 and I said OK(as in I'll buy it for you).

A few minutes later I was ready to check out and she said, "OK, I'll be right back."  She ran and put the book back.  On the way home I asked her why she didn't get the colouring book and she said,"I didn't know I could, I didn't hear you say so."

That's right, I do let them get a treat at the check out once in a while but I ASK them if they would like something, not the other way around.  Am I a softy.......yes, I picked up the colouring book when I was out today because I am so proud of her behavior.  I think she'll be pretty excited to find it in her Christmas stocking.


  1. What a good girl!

    You are so right about not giving in. Kids learn quickly whether or not they can get away with bad behavior.

  2. Wow what a great daughter. I try my best to stand my ground with my son as well. The stores around here give free cookies (so that helps) but he always asks with a please and thank you. Does he blow fits? Of course he does. Do I let him get away with it, no. But I will admit that it is hard sometimes when you have other parents staring you down like you just physically hurt them in some way... Especially in a small town. I pray for the day he's not quite so dramatic :S