I have actually let DS have a sip of coffee now and then. I thought he would hate it and not want anymore but he actually seemed to like it.
He doesn't usually ask for it, though.
I am laughing at the "running into the street" thing - it seems to be one of those archetypical scenarios people always bring up as a shorthand to illustrate their point, yk? I mean, I am sure it has happened but I don't think most kids are launching themselves into oncoming traffic on a daily basis, lol.
I am uncomfortable with the word "control". I don't like the thought of "controlling" children. I prefer to think of them being guided, or protected. For instance, we have a regular bedtime at our house. DS goes to bed willingly at this time every night. We did not pick this bedtime arbitrarily, it is based on his natural rhythms and he is usually sleepy at this time. We sometimes adjust it based on other things that are going on. But in our family, we all do better with some structure. The trick is to build the structure to suit the family, not mold the family to the structure, KWIM? So it works for us. But DS is the kind of kid who will just stay up until he passes out on the floor from exhaustion unless you create an opportunity for sleep for him. Other kids might not need this.
When I am making a "rule" or whatever, a "way we do things", I try very hard to examine my motivation for doing it. Is it truly a safety issue? A health issue? A moral issue? Maybe I just don't want to clean up a mess, or I want to hurry up and get something done, or I am just losing my patience and want things my way. Then I try to stop and figure out if there is a compromise, or a solution that will satisy everyone. Sometimes there isn't, and then I just have to prioritize which need or want is more important, and it can't just automatically be me, lol. Anyway, I find that if I try to remain mindful of *why* I do things, I am much less likely to fall into the trap of wanting to "control" things or micromanage them, which is a problem I have. I have had to learn to let a lot of things go, and examine what is really important to me and why. Plus, I think when you try to be fair and your rules make logical sense, kids are much more likely to cooperate with you willingly. Nobody wants to follow a rule that makes no sense to them.