I think most people these days would be familiar with terms like 'loss of face' and 'not giving enough face'. I'm not even going to attempt explaining what 'face' means but you can browse through this Wikipedia attempt at various definitions.
Anyway, I remember being chided quite often by my mother when I was a child for wanting too much 'face'. And now, I hear myself thinking the word with Aaron. The closest English idiom that I can think of to describe the situation is to "give an inch and he will take a mile". Something like that...
Even though it can be hard work when there is no back up around, Aaron is extremely well behaved and easy to handle when he's in a one on one situation. If I'm at home alone with him for the day, he's entirely co-operative, willing to entertain himself and we get everything done. If its just the two of us when we go out shopping, he just holds my hand and walks obediently wherever we need to go.
Recently, Richard joined us. And a couple of days ago, my aunt from Holland also arrived for the Christmas holidays. And Aaron has been wanting more and more face everyday.
Its fun to have so many people in the house but at the same time, he's playing all of them. And its tiring for me to try to keep him disciplined. I'm relieved to see that he still has some respect for me and doesn't try to con me into things but it has been increasingly harder to get him to do the normal stuff like go to bed, brush his teeth, pick up his toys and even eat. And when we go out, if one person doesn't follow his insistent arm pulling into some book/toy shop or other, he'll just grab the next arm available. And at the end of the day, I'm always the bad guy that has to try to get the face wanting kid back in line.
Christmas time, its not only diets go out the window, routines, discipline and good behavior seem to take a beating too.