Is anybody hurt or about to be hurt? Is blood involved? Anything broken? No? Then I don’t want to hear about it. Not only do I not want to hear about it, but for the most part I genuinely do not care. He said, she said, he did, she did. If I can’t figure out a way to get this tattling to stop, I’m going to lose my mind.
I need information, not tattles.
Sure, there are absolutely things that I need to know about. If your brother is doing something that is obviously going to get him hurt and land him in the ER again, please come tell me. If your sister is angry that her craft project isn’t working out and is going nutsy cuckoo while still holding her scissors or hot glue gun, get your butt in gear and let me know.
Otherwise please, please stop tattling. I don’t care that your sister cheated in the game and you walked away. You already solved the situation. She cheated, so you won’t play with her. Done and done, no need for me to get involved. If she wants you to play with her, she’ll stop cheating.
I also have no interest in hearing that your little brother is reading one of your books, even though you haven’t so much as looked at it in weeks. It’s a book. He has eyes. Let him read and leave me out of it.
Learn to resolve things on your own.
Maybe it sounds harsh, and I’m not a totally hands-off mom. When one kid comes to me truly needing help and support in a difficult or unknown situation, I’m there. All ears and ready to listen. Same when they come running, tears in their eyes with hurting hearts It’s time to climb on up into my lap (even if one is rapidly catching up to my height) and cry it out, kiddo.
But I absolutely do not need to hear about how your sister rolled her eyes at you. Or that your brother was mumbling something underneath his breath, and even though you didn’t hear it you just know it was about you.
Because I need them to learn to sort things out by themselves. I am not an intervener and nobody has paid me to be a neutral, third-party mediator. In the safety of our own home, my kids need to explore how they can work through arguments and disagreements.
They have to learn that you can come back to another person not with a forced and mumbled “Sorry,” but a genuine “I’m sorry.” And sometimes, a silent understanding that what happened was in the past, and it’s OK to let it go.
Also, I literally cannot take another kid tattling, especially when I’m working and it’s your video game time. If we’re being honest, we can all admit it’s super annoying and no one wants to be the parent of the chronic tattler. You know who I’m talking about. When you’re minding your own business at the park and suddenly you have a strange kid in front of you, tattling on another kid that you’ve never even seen before.
So my darling children. Apples of my eye. Children who I carried and birthed and have kept alive thus far. Kids, you’ve gotta stop tattling, or mommy’s gonna lose it.