Friday, February 22, 2008

Extreme Mom Strike

I can't say I don't empathize with this a degree.

It seems Ms. Dean went off the deep end when her four boys were running the household in what appears to have been a boys-gone-wild atmosphere:

A Central Florida mother of four boys was arrested on Tuesday after telling authorities that she went "on strike" more than a month ago, leaving the teens home alone for hours every day because they would constantly fight.

Melissa G. Dean, 33, was charged with child neglect after telling Ocala police and the Department of Children and Families that she leaves her children, ages 17, 16, 14 and 13, home alone.

According to a charging affidavit, Dean said the children needed to start cleaning up and stop fighting and that she had no control over them. Dean also said she was fed up with being run over in her own home and having no privacy, according to the affidavit.

The article doesn't mention the father, so perhaps he's not in the picture. Honestly, the thought of having to deal with 4 boys that close in age by myself is more than a bit frightening. My two are at the age where the arguments can turn to blows in seconds.

I've tried all sorts of ideas to get them to give it a rest, but the only thing that seems to work is taking away their electronic gizmos. The problem is that if you take away the computer, you find them playing the Wii. If you take away the Wii, and you find them sitting in front of the TV, etc., etc.. Perhaps the next time they get in a fight, I'll go down to the breaker and switch off all the electricity in the house. THAT'LL SHOW 'EM I MEAN BUSINESS! [emphasis added to hide my trepidation that the wanted results will ever actually transpire].

At the beginning of last year, I attempted a Mom strike. I blogged about it here, here, here and here. It wasn't terribly productive, but I do feel like they've been a little better about cleaning up since that time. I've noticed the biggest difference in my husband. He's been more apt to help with the kitchen cleanup as well as getting after the boys to help around the house.

I kinda doubt if there are many Moms out there who haven't thought about leaving the house when their kids are driving them up a tree. I've certainly done it. "Honey, we're completely out of milk...I'll be back in just a bit". Three or four hours later and one gallon of milk in hand, I saunter back into the house much less stress ridden.

I noticed that if those four boys are all her own, she was pregnant at 16, had another child at 17, had her third at age 19, and her last at age 20. Sheesh...and all boys!! Honestly, I'm thinking this poor gal deserves at least a month's stay at a relaxing health spa or a resort vs. having to deal with a courtroom battle.