The mother did not want to get mad at her child but wanted to teach her a lesson about being grateful for what she has.
Editor’s note: This article was originally published on November 25, 2020. It has since been updated.
We see mothers as nurturers, but when the time calls for it, they become disciplinarians as well. Recently, one Florida mom had to step into the tough love shoes when her six-year-old daughter behaved in an ungrateful way. So, the mom, Haley Hassell of Pensacola, taught her girl about gratitude instead of getting angry and losing her cool.
Parents from across the country have applauded Haley for her innovative method to teach her daughter, Presleigh, a valuable lesson. Haley had posted about the incident on Facebook on August 13 and garnered thousands of likes.
The six-year-old girl wanted a LOL-brand pencil case so Haley went to three stores and finally found. Finally, when she gave her daughter the present Presleigh threw it in the trash instead of being thankful.
"Mrs. Presleigh learned a tough-love lesson today. I went to 3 different stores to get that LOL pencil box you see in the trash there. When I surprised her with it this afternoon (just knowing she would be ecstatic) she stared at it and threw it in the trash and slammed the bedroom door. She yelled 'that’s stupid, everyone in my class has that..I don’t want it anymore!'" the single mom wrote on Facebook.
Haley was shocked at her child's reaction but instead of going "madea mad" she checked her anger. "I have worked so hard to completely take care of financially on my own & make sure she always gets what she needs and then some. BUT I thought I had always taught her to be grateful & know how lucky she was but apparently sis needed a small wake up call!" she wrote.
According to Good Morning America (GMA), she then told Presleigh, "Okay that's fine, let me go get the one you're going to use...came back with her new pencil box, which is the ziploc bag. She lost her mind! Suddenly the LOL Box she just trashed was good enough and the ziploc bag was horrible...but it's too late for all that." On the Ziploc bag, she had scribbled Presleigh's pencil case.
"She's had her moments but never anything like that. I was trying to be calm," Hassell told GMA. "She's only 6 so I have to be flexible in how to handle it. I don't want to break her heart, but also don't want her to think she can act like that. It's not how I was raised."
However, at this point, the mother had made up her mind to go all the way in teaching her a lesson about gratitude. So, she told her daughter that the pencil case will be donated to a child who needs it more than her.
"We would be finding a child to give it to tomorrow..one whose mommy and daddies don’t have money for any school supplies or someone who may not even have a mommy or daddy. I explained to her she’s not entitled to anything special and she is taking for granted how lucky she is... So for now she will be using a ziploc bag & will personally be delivering the nice box to a child that could benefit from it. Maybe I over react sometimes but I would’ve done anything to have all the things she does as a child. I truly believe Changing your perception & just being grateful can turn around any situation in life," she wrote on Facebook.
The mother and daughter mailed the pencil case and few other school supplies to a 5-year-old girl in Utah. "Presleigh thought that was really cool. She understood once we were shopping for other children," Haley told GMA. She thinks it gave her six-year-old "perspective."