So, I suppose one of the most difficult adjustments thus far has been the fact that in an effort to be “helpful” my bonus kids have repeatedly criticized most everything I do. This has been most readily apparent at the dinner table. After a long day at work, I will rush home to get dinner on the table. I do my best to make sure there is a main course, a side dish and a vegetable (or at least a fruit) all laid on a well-set table. It’s not easy with eight to feed, many of whom are picky eaters, but I do pride myself on the fact that after one month, I have not yet resorted to a reheated frozen meal or pizza.
However, my efforts are typically met with “I don’t like that!” “You should have done it this way instead.” “Our mom does it this other way.” etc. I could probably take one or two of those comments at any given meal, but with five (and if Justin joins in – six) all firing away at once, it can get pretty rough. In short, it leaves me feeling exhausted and as if everything I do is wrong.
So, my wonderful husband heard my desperation and laid down the law. The new rule is that folks are only allowed to give positive feedback at the dinner table UNLESS ASKED. If I ask, “What do you think of this?” or “Should I make this one again?” it is an open door for feedback of all varieties. However, barring the invitation to ‘let’er loose’ the kids are invited to only talk about what they like. We’ve only been on this new system for a day now, but I’ve got to admit it was the most pleasant dinner we have had as a family since the move. I know things may slip now and then, but I have some hope that we may have found a solution to my dinner time blues.