October 9, 2014 by Katia
Some time ago I tweeted this:
4 Year Old confirming: mama, YOU’RE the bad cop, right?
Well, Four Year Old is now five and nothing’s changed except for the realization on my part that there’s yet another parenting milestone which “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” didn’t cover. It happens at the hospital when your bundle of joy is handed to you for the very first time and it’s commonly referred to as: Congratulations, You’re a Bad Cop!
Your initiation into the role may not take place right away, it may not kick in until after the Terrible Twos, but guess what?
*Cue police orchestra*
Where there’s a bad cop there’s also a good one.
As a chronic killjoy, parent bad cop, as opposed to bad cop bad cop, is not feared, but rather defied, which in turn creates a vicious cycle perpetuating their killjoie. Good Cop, on the other hand, flutters about carelessly enabling your terrible twos/fives/sixteens along the way. So if you think about it good cop is technically a dirty cop.
Here’s an outline of a standard day and the very different approaches demonstrated by bad cop and good cop throughout it.
Typically in the morning good cop and bad cop will alternate shifts. Bad cop’s on rotation and a crisis comes up. Her two-year-old is faced with his biggest pet peeve: dirty diaper changes, WTF? He knows that bad cop means business so he either runs or transitions into a downward dog. There is no need for any of that thinking on your feet and quick decision making with good cop as his sense of smell, doesn’t kick in until later in the day.
Bad cop insists on Two Year Old spending time at solitary confinement on a daily basis. She thinks that sleep is important, even if you need to shed a few tears to get there (God knows she’s tried that method herself before). Good cop views naps as another one of bad cop’s quirks. Meh.
After dinner Bad Cop always tries to enforce a vague concept she refers to as “wind down time”. Good Cop’s preferred post-dinner activity is chasing the kids around the house and lifting them up by the ankles facilitating regurgitation and indigestion of the vegetables that bad cop painstakingly threatened and good copped them into eating.
Bad Cop says no to EVERYTHING from wearing your clothes to bath to peeing in the tub and drinking peepe water, emptying water buckets onto the floor and even jumping in and out of the tub. Good cop, on the other hand, understands the importance of Goodtimes and a brisk run through the corridor and past the staircase without being towel dried.
Bedtime is when the differences between good cop and bad cop are as clear as the light of day. While bad cop constantly checks her watch and denies the inmates their human rights such as freedom of speech, movement and frequent hydration, good cop is all about human rights.
Served on a silver platter with a side of Kinder Chocolate Egg.
Who’s the bad cop and good cop in your family?