We subscribe to the cheapest cable TV package in the Yummy Mummy household but, mercifully, all the BBC channels come as part of that bundle. I know it makes me an expats expat to crave that little piece of home but I swear the programs are just better than the US bunch that come churning out of the Fox-related networks we also get.
My latest BBC addiction is Supernanny. I know that I have come to the Supernanny fold quite late, but there is something incredibly compelling about watching some truly awful children, and their parents, start the show behaving so badly and ending it like little angels. I know I am a complete voyeur in this respect. There is something compelling about watching car crashes, whether rubber necking on the motorway or a family. However, I also view Supernanny as something of a horror movie (a genre I hate). What if Eve turns out like that? What if I do? What if people say that about my child?
I also don't quite believe it is that easy, for either parent or child. I mean why exactly does an otherwise unruly and out of control six year old sit on a naughty seat and not move? Is it all clever editing?
Last weekend Eve had her first tantrum. I naively thought she'd had them before, but like many things with children you don't realise you've had one until they really hit! I can't recall what prompted it, but we had full on screaming and crying and shouting. So, taking a leaf out of Supernanny's book, I popped Eve on the sofa and said she would have to stay there until she calmed down. She got off once, but I put her back on, and she stayed there. She tried everything to fight it. Volume, shouting for Daddy (I had to restrain him from going over and cuddling her), shouting for me. Screaming "sorry" at the top of her lungs but refusing to say it quietly. But she stayed on the sofa.
I sat in the kitchen, I am afraid to say, laughing quietly and mouthing at the Boy "why doesn't she just get off the sofa?!?!". It actually worked. But why on earth did an otherwise bright and intelligent child not realise there is nothing I could do to keep her on the sofa? I am not querying it, but I can't understand whatever psychology lies behind it.
I am now watching Supernanny with a newfound sense of respect.