Dr. Sherri Articles
Hey Mom…Pull My Finger - Fun With Flatulence by Dr. Sherri Singer
October, 27, 2003 HEALTHWATCH~Originally printed in Lakeland Newspapers
By Dr. Sherri Singer, Psy.D.
By Dr. Sherri Singer, Psy.D.
Grab your clothes pin!!
Hi Dr. Singer,
I know you have written about this in the past so I don’t feel completely embarrassed about my question. I have a husband who has a great deal of fun with the kids about passing gas. He’s really just a big kid himself. His favorite comedy routine is Bill Cosby "Himself" when he talks about how his Dad used to pass gas and blame it on invisible animals. If you haven’t heard it, try to. It’s really funny. I don’t usually have a problem with this when it is inside of our own home, but the other night, we were out at a restaurant with some friends of our family when one of the boys leaned over sideways and let one rip, for lack of a better term. And it was a ripper! I almost crawled under the table. Of course, everyone at the table was laughing except for me. They all told me to lighten up but I am not sure that I should let this one go without some form of lesson for the perpetrator of this gaseous offense. Should I let it go or not? S.A.S.
Sounds like you all had a "blast." Sorry, I could not resist! It seems that most of us do not ever outgrow our fun with flatulence. I know many people, adults and kids alike who have a lot of laughs over things like this. It sounds like your real problem here is not the passing of the gas, but the unwarned public display of it. So, you might try to explain to the children that if they want to have fun at home it’s one thing, but going into public and doing bathroom behaviors, is not acceptable to you, even if it may be to Dad. I don’t want to tell you to have Dad stop having fun with the kids at home because it sounds like they have a very good time and it really is pretty harmless if it’s just them at home. Of course, I guess that depends on what they all had for dinner. Just be ready to open the windows!
It might be good for Dad to be the one who talks with them about doing this at home versus out in the world. Since he is the one they do this with, they may mistakenly feel it’s o.k. to do it anywhere they are together. Although, it might be hard for Dad to do this, since he has so much fun with it. You may need to be there for moral support.
If the kids won’t stop doing it in public, even with Dad telling them not to do it, you and Dad either need to emphatically make your position known and follow up with appropriate consequences, accept it, or resolve to not go out with all of them together with other friends so you avoid the embarrassment altogether. I do think that they need to learn to not do this kind of thing in public now so they do not become adults who do that in public. Something tells me that if they do that, they will not be very popular once out of a College age crowd. College age kids live for this stuff!
Hopefully one of these suggestions will work for you. In the meantime, make sure you pack your clothes pin!
Dr. Sherri is a Child and Family Processing and Motivation expert seeing people via webcam. For more info go to http://www.drsher.weebly.com
Dr. Sherri Singer, Psy.D.
I'm glad to help.
Dr. Singer's areas of expertise involve cognitive ways of helping parents with child motivation, processing skills, learning and homework improvement as well as processing based brain training. She does not work with severe Psychological conditions or people with serious Psychological issues. If you feel you have those kinds of issues, you can let Dr. Singer know and she will make appropriate referrals for you to get the type of expert and help you need. If anyone viewing this site or any other of Dr. Singer's social media pages feels suicidal, self destructive or like they could harm someone else, or they know someone in that situation, they need to get themselves or the other person to an emergency room and/or call 911 immediately for help.