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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What do you do when you have to break a promise to your toddler? I promised dd (2 yo) that we could go to the movie and ride the bus today (While we were having some work done on the car). Well this am she got up all excited to go to the movie and ride the bus but she started vomiting. She threw up twice. Of course we couldn’t go, and I tried to explain to her, but she still seems disappointed. She cried and cried when dh took the car this morning.<br><br>
Any ideas? This is the first time anything like this has happened with us.
 

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I try not to make promises for that very reason. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mecry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crying"> I got really badly burned the last time I made a promise to a child: I told my niece that she could be the first person to visit Eli in the hospital when he was born. Well, Eli went to the NICU and they didn't allow non-siblings under 12 to visit at all. I was too sick and washed out to argue about it at that point, and I'm *still* depressed about it. Even though I knew better than to make a promise to a child that I wasn't 100% certain of, I thought that it was harmless. It never in my wildest dreams occured to me that Eli wouldn't be in my room and coming home with me after his birth. My niece and I are *both* still upset about this, a year and a half later. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mecry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crying"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/bawling.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="bawl"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mecry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crying"><br><br>
At any rate, you can tell your child that grownups are people and that they make mistakes, just like kids; that you're really sorry but you didn't think about all the possible contingincies, and that you'll be more careful about making promises in the future.
 

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I just explain and tell them things changed. It stinks, but changes of plans are part of life. I think it's reasonable for her to be upset, but I think that explaining in the simplest terms :" I know you're sick because you threw up, and people who are sick can't ride the bus. When you're better, we'll ride the bus then. Let's plan for Monday--three sleeps." It does mean making another promise, but it shows her that the intention is still there, even if she has to wait.<br><br>
It's tough being a toddler, when you don't understand how everything works but it still affects your life.<br><br>
Hugs,<br><br>
Cate
 

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I try to offer something else to make up for it. Like if I say we can go to the park but it rains, we go out for a snack instead.<br><br>
I don't "promise" anything; I try to make good on everything I say I will do. Somehow saying to dd "I'll read you a story" and "I promise I'll read you a story" don't seem different to me. If I say I'll do it, then I do it or I find a way to make up for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
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<div style="font-style:italic;">I don't "promise" anything; I try to make good on everything I say I will do. Somehow saying to dd "I'll read you a story" and "I promise I'll read you a story" don't seem different to me. If I say I'll do it, then I do it or I find a way to make up for it.</div>
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I didn't actually use the word "promise" but I said we would do it and, Like you, I try to do everything possible to do it. Since bringing a puking feverish toddler on the bus seemed like a really bad idea, I did let her watch a DVD on the computer. Granted, it was Spinal Tap since the only DVDs we own are Spinal Tap and Fight Club. I though Spinal Tap was the better choice. Not really a makeup, but the best I could do stranded.<br><br>
thistle
 

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I just help them look forward to when we can do whatever it is we had discussed. Explain as many times as they need and let them know the reasons we have to stay home (like not getting other people sick, not getting sicker, etc) I'm sure she'll be ok, btu I can't stand when I'm unable to follow through on our plans as well.
 

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When this happens to us, we just talk about how things change. She could not help getting sick. It is dissipointing, yes that is very true. Dealing with situations with my kids this way has made them understand that events change. There are the melt downs also. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"><br><br>
Good luck and hope she's better soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I know I am particularly sensitive to this b/c my mother used to say "If X, then we can do Y" and then X would happen but I would never get to do Y. Y was usually something we would never have been able to afford, but I didn't understand that at the time. I just knew she wasn't keeping her word and it drove me crazy. She never should have said we could do Y in the first place.<br><br>
I think DD thinks we did the movie thing. She doesn't really understand "go to the movie" so we watched a movie and that was good. She was much happier this evening. She is only 25 months, so I still have time to make it up to her. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
When she is better I will take her to a movie.<br><br>
thistle
 
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