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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Ask a Dad

Good Cop, Bad Cop: A Tried and True Parenting Technique

Kacey and I watch a fair amount of Law & Order SVU - not for the emotionally scarring crime stories, but rather as a tutorial to help us achieve perfection in the art of Good Cop, Bad Cop. GCBC is a proven parenting method of truth gathering and disciplining. Medical journals are replete with case studies proving its benefit, although, I might be confusing this with the Milgram experiments.

To strengthen our interrogation skills, Kacey has been doing bench presses and I’ve been growing a mustache. Kacey, by default, usually plays the good cop because the person with the mustache is simply duty-bound to be the bad cop. If neither of us had a mustache, Kacey would naturally assume the bad cop role.

Rapidly oscillating parental tactics wear children down. It’s at this slumbered state of mind that you can finally get them to bend to your will. Here’s the transcript from one of our recent GCBC interrogation sessions. And yes, we record each session…just like the cops.

The Setting: Emi is in her high chair anticipating dinner. Kacey sits in front of her, holding back a spoonful of minced ravioli. Tyler stands behind Kacey with one foot on a chair, gnawing on a toothpick.

Kacey: Please? Say please?
Emi: Wah!
Kacey: Before you eat, you need to say please. Please?
Emi: Wah!
Kacey: No. Say please.
Emi: Wah! (Emi throws her spoon at Kacey.)

Tyler scoots his chair in close to Emi. He sits down, straddling the back of the chair.

Tyler: What do we got here, an ingrate? Got ourselves an ingrate.

Emi: Dundasndana. Wah!
Tyler: What’s that, missy? We don’t exactly speak “ingrate” up in this house. You wanna play ball, you better say please like Mommy asked you to.
Emi: Uh. Dunsundimba. Dat.

Tyler immediately bolts out of his seat and paces the room.

Kacey: Sweetie, please. Help us help you. You’ve done it before. We just want you to say it again - just once. Say please.
Emi: Ah! Wah! Uh!
Tyler: You’re one tough customer. I like that. I like that.

Tyler throws his toothpick down and storms out of the room. Kacey starts feeding Emi.

Kacey: Tyler, can you come finish feeding her? The Hills is about to start.

Tyler reenters the room.

Tyler: Sure.

Judging by this photo we believe we are making some real progress. Emi definitely seems intimidated by our GCBC act. It's only a matter of time before she straightens up.

Good luck and remember you're the parent.


Tyler is a guest blogger and father to Emi. The Three Bay B Chicks have asked him to shed light on a Dad’s point of view under the stern supervision of his loving wife. If you have a question for Ask A Dad, feel free to submit it in the comments section. The Three Bay B Chicks are not responsible for Tyler's "advice."

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The Blonde Duck said...

That's really funny. Who would have thought Law and Order could be parent's guide to well behaved children?

Meg said...

You guys crack me up.

Jillene said...

Hahahaha!! That was GREAT!! I am an avid Law and Order SVU watcher too. I play good cop bad cop all of the time with my kids. Think it ever works? I keep telling myself that I am the parent but....

peewee said...

HAHAHHAHAH!! Oh...that was good. so so good. But which one of you gets the privilege of being Mariska Hargitay? The hot one?

PS....I loved my award!

Tulip Row said...

I LOVED THIS! Hilarious! I appreciate every little reference, especially the hills!

Debbie said...

Now why have I not ever thought of this? You are an inspiration.

Brittany Marie said...

Hahaha, that was really cute!

Unknown said...

LMAO!!! this was Great!!! I hafta say i dont miss those highchair days

Becky said...

Oh, my goodness! This was just the pick-me-up I needed today. Thanks for the laugh.

Anonymous said...

You guys could write a parenting guide. You'll rake in the bucks and then no one will care if Emi says please.

Just SO said...

GCBC always works. I could see the intimidation in her eyes.

Jo said...

Yes do that. One day she will say please, then pretty please, then you are done for! You will melt under the power of those huge eyes. Good luck!

Counselormama said...

Please, please consider posting an example of this parenting style on YouTube! I bet it would get a million hits, this is too funny!

Erin said...

I love how every child says "dat" when they first start talking, and they know exactly what they mean. So funny! And yes, she's definitely intimidated. I think.

wendy said...

i can't get over the we don't speak ingrate.
{um - please tell me that mustache is for a dare. please.}

*Monica said...

too funny!! We have tried that route before. We got a lot of back talk too.

Tim said...

Go Dad! We need some more bloggy Daddy's out here. Oh that sounded so gay. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Ok.... Ill just shut up now.


joanofalltrades said...

I love your perseverance!

forever folding laundry said...

Really, Ty, a mustache??!? I wouldn't have pegged you for the mustache type. (Sideburns, yes.) I guess if it's all in the spirit of intimidation, though....

Helene said...

This was fun to read!!! I hadn't thought about using the things I learn on Law and Order to get my kids to behave or do the things I want!! I could've used that piece of info this past weekend!!!! Great post!!!

Angelwingsbaby said...

Francesca what a sweet and touching comment you left on my blog, I was truly amazed and taken back to log on and read that.I just wanted to extend you a warm welcome to my blog. I hope to see more of you!! -Megan

Mama SeWELL said...

Hahaha! That was great! Stopping by to say thanks for lurking the other day :-) I also wanted to answer your question about the photo. I wish I had one of those fancy SLRs. Mine however is a antique 2004 Sony Cybershot 7.2 12x digi. cam. that has tortured me over the years. I hate it and have threatened to throw it for not cooperating frequently. Every once in awhile I come up with something like that photo and surprise myself. I keep hoping for a upgrade, but I always find something else thats needed more. One day!

Have a good day!