Ever realize that your kids act completely different at home than they do anywhere else? They have a face for home and there’s a face they show the rest of the world. Perhaps, you’ve received such a report from your child’s teacher describing them as a little angel. And you smile politely and ask, “WTF? We’re talking about the same kid, right?” (But I hope you don’t actually say the WTF part, just think it without the acronym). This description, of course, is Crash and Bang.
At home they are Crash and Bang for a reason. They could also be Stomper and Screamer. Or Thing 1 and Thing 2. But once out of the house, out of the truck and into school they immediately change personalities.
One morning Bang woke on the wrong side of the bed. We couldn’t even look at him without him losing it. Everything from breakfast to clothes to having to brush his teeth frustrated him and sent him into fits of stomps, growls and tears. Upon dropping him off at school I gave his teachers the heads up that he had been overly cranky all morning.
Naturally, upon picking him that afternoon his teachers informed that he was delightful. There was no stomping. There was no growling. There were no tears. What a chach.
Crash is the same way. I picked him after school yesterday to find him happily sweeping the classroom. I made the comment, “You do know how to use the broom!” To which his teacher replied, “And I don’t pay him.” And at his parent/teacher conference last week she talked about how sweet he was. Huh?
Thanks to an article over at Parents.com, I’ve come to understand, or at least justify, why this occurs.
You see, they’re safe at home. We can’t kick them out. We can’t tell their parents on them… we are their parents. We will love them unconditionally. We will love them when they’re happy and silly. We’ll love them when they’re not. They trust us to love them no matter.
At school, they control their impulses. They have friends to fit in with. They have teachers to impress. There are strict, well communicated rules to follow. There are strict, well communicated consequences.
At home, while there are rules, there are consequences, maybe they’re aren’t so well communicated because there are so many different infractions. However, some rules at home they have no trouble following at school. Sibling rivalry causes them to want to share. Yet they share everything at school. We are their parents so they speak to us differently, or at least try. They don’t clean up their messes at home, while at school they are careful to put everything in its place.
We are their parents, they feel comfortable attempting to get away with this stuff at home. I’m pretty sure my parents were the same way with their parents. I’m pretty sure I was the same way with my parents. I’m pretty sure my grandchildren will be the same way with their parents. It’s just the way kids are wired.
Though, in all fairness, I suppose we all act a little different at home than we do in public. And Some of us are just plain goofy no matter where we are.