My sweet girl,
Tonight, Dad nearly called Harvey Karp at his home in Washington, D.C. (P.S. Does anyone have his number?). Maybe we should call Alfie Kohn.
Here's how it goes:
"Do you want to have a happy bedtime?"
"Yes! Yeah! I'm a big girl! Let's take vitamins!"
We make it upstairs, etc. etc. We start to see a struggle when putting your pajamas on.
"What's this, Lucy? We thought you wanted a happy bedtime!"
"Yes, okay. I can be gentle. I love you so much! Let's read this book!"
By this time, about 40 minutes has passed. Pajamas are on, book has been read, but now you don't want to brush your teeth.
"Alright...come in the bathroom, or we will kiss you goodnight now. 1,2,3... Okay, we love you, goodnight."
Commence screaming -- you don't come downstairs, or turn on your light -- you cry, spit and sing angry songs(!) while we torture ourselves in the living room.
"WTF should we do?" we ask ourselves. We don't want to deny you love and affection, but bedtimes that last 90 minutes (and not 90 'sweet' minutes, which would be something entirely different!) are not working for us.
We come back up and comfort, brush teeth and cover you up with 10 blankets. 15 minutes later, we are finally downstairs...until you cry because Dad doesn't exchange 25 "I love yous" through your (now closed) bedroom door. Dad goes back up to your room. Then I go up. Finally, I am covering you up and closing your door. I am at the top of the steps when I hear your sweet voice --
"I love you SO much."
Suddenly, I realize these past 90 minutes have passed quickly, but oh my, they wear us out. How can we work this out? Should we call your Union Representative?