If you have ever studied psychology you might be familiar with this term. If you are a parent you are very familiar with the behaviour, you just might call it by another (less polite) name.
Last night I went out with some friends to celebrate my recent milestone birthday. Is it wrong to have a birthday month?
I had been gone from my home 15 minutes and at the table for 5 when my friend's cellphone rang. Being a conscientious mother she had her phone on the table - mine was deep in my purse.
"Oh, hi there, do you want to talk to your wife?" It was my husband. I quickly retrieve my phone and see FOUR missed calls and two voicemails - uh oh. My husband is not a panicker. So, with a little trepidation, I take the phone.
Him: "Honey, the five year old tells me she didn't get any dinner?" Sigh.
Me: "That's not true - she had pizza AND a cheese sandwich AND a cookie"
At this point my ever supportive girlfriends are falling sideways off their chairs.
Me: "Well if she's still hungry go ahead and make something for her but I think she might just be trying it on - ask her what she's hungry for."
I quite clearly hear the answer in the background. "Ice-cream." Hmmm.
I am torn with feeling proud of her for trying to wangle a treat and feeling maligned that one; she would tell her Daddy I didn't feed her and that two; he would even feel the need to check.
I'm Scottish - we over feed as a national pastime.
I make a mental note to add some additional instructions for babysitters and order a Cosmo.