After husband slapped difficult child across the face yesterday, I spent the day stressed out waiting to see what would happen next... husband called several times during the day to tell me what he wanted me to do when difficult child got home from school - only problem was, he was still angry and he didn't know what he wanted me to do....so mostly he just called to yell at me. And then he would say When difficult child gets home today - I want her to X....no wait, she can do Y...better yet, she can do X and Y AND Z! And I would listen and then say - so, you want me to try to get difficult child to X, Y, and Z ? And he would say "What? Oh I don't know - whatever you think is best." And then he would call again and we'd basically have the same conversation! So clearly, he was angry - but he was waffling all over the place about what he was trying to accomplish and how he wanted to accomplish it. I suggested that what we really want is for difficult child to learn that she needs to treat people with respect in order to get her needs met. Yeah, yeah - whatever you think... So difficult child gets off the bus looking for a fight. She stormed into the house, slamming doors and yelling - stomped into her bedroom and began to pack up her stuff. Then she changed her mind and stormed into the kitchen. Meanwhile, husband calls again. AGAIN he wants to tell me what's gonna happen when difficult child gets home (I don't bother mentioning that she is already home)...AGAIN he is back and forth about what he wants. Meanwhile, he can hear difficult child in the background ask me if she can have some crackers for an afterschool snack. I tell her Yes - and husband loses it. Crackers? Why are you letting her have crackers? She's grounded! NO afterschool snacks!!! At that point I got off the phone. It was clear that difficult child and husband were both coming home with MAJOR attitudes and if anything positive was gonna happen I was gonna have to do it myself. Sure enough, husband storms in - and he can't remember what he "decided" when we talked on the phone. I asked him what he wanted - he yelled that he didn't know. He wanted to know what was that thing I said earlier? Ugh - for Pete's sake....was he seriously asking me to tell him what he thinks??? To make up his mind for him??? That was the last straw. I sat husband and difficult child down at the kitchen table and didn't let either of them speak. *I* did the talking and I starting by asking them both questions to which they could only answer "Yes" or "No". And BOTH of them complained that I wasn't letting them tell their side! And BOTH of them tried yelling and swearing at each other. (I swear I wanted to grab both of them by the back of the skull and crack their heads together!) At one point, husband actually stood up and yelled that this wasn't how HE wanted to handle things! I told him to sit his butt back down - since *I* am driving this thing, we are taking MY road! And I negotiated what *I* wanted. No more alarm clock games. No more husband going to wake difficult child up. difficult child can get herself up. The end. And no more arguing about walking out the door - no more "I got time! I got time!". Out the door at XX time - the end. And no more disrespect. difficult child does the wrong thing and / or mouths off about it - no favors from Mom and Dad. Meanwhile, Dad is not to wake difficult child in the morning - he is not to argue with her about what time the bus arrives and he is NOT to get into any altercations if difficult child does the wrong thing and/ or mouths off. He will simply not do anything for difficult child. No rides. No favors. The end. Since neither of them could find anything to argue about with my solutions - that was the end of it. Crisis averted! No police! No CPS. No rages! No meltdowns! I was SOOO proud! I felt like I saved the day! Woot! Woot! But what did husband think of all this? Did he think I handled it well? Did he think I had good ideas? Was he pleased that I had maintained calm? Was he the slightest bit appreciative of my efforts? Yeah, right. He's still angry because he STILL feels that I have not "stepped up" enough with difficult child... so his comment on the evenings events? "We're even." --sigh-- What a maroon!