A little bit of Discipline

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

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At mother's group the other day the Mums were lamenting the fact that their respective toddlers don't listen to them. I thought I was the only one who's toddler just looks blankly & pretends that she doesn't understand me when I say 'No, don't touch that/don't climb that/stop playing with the toilet brush', 'please clean up XYZ' etc. Lulu knows what these commands mean. She listens to other people when they say them, she just doesn't listen to me. Turns out that all the Mums are having this problem at the moment. One mum mentioned that sometimes her toddler gives her this 'F you' look and deliberately does the thing she's not supposed to do anyway. Has this happened to you? I had to admit that this happens with Lulu too.

We have started following a method of discipline that is used by a close friend of mine with her 2 year old. When the child is doing something naughty you say NO firmly and explain why they should stop doing what they are doing. If they continue to do what they are doing then you firmly say I'm going to count to three & if you haven't stopped X you are going in a time out'. You then count '1', leave a little break then count '2', leave another break then count '3'. If they haven't stopped by the time you get to three, then they are put in a time out. As you are taking them to the time out you explain that they are going in a time out because they didn't stop doing X and explain again why they shouldn't be doing it. The timeout place can just be as simple as being in the corner and the length of time is not longer than a minute per the child's age.

I think this method has worked with Lulu because she's seen her friend go in a time out & realised that it's a fairly serious thing that she doesn't want to happen to her so she'll normally stop whatever she's doing before it gets to three. We don't use it for things like throwing food/bowls/spoons on the floor because it's generally better just to have her help pick up the item/s. Which she will do, even if it takes a few minutes to convince her to help. Do you have a method that works with your kids? Discipline is something that isn't talked about very often, we'd all like to pretend our kids are angels, but sometimes they're not. 

6 comments :

  1. I'll fully admit that Alice is no angel. I bet she spends a good majority of her day doing things she shouldn't be doing! We do something similar to what you described but not consistently, so I'll have to give your suggestions a go and see how her behavior changes. She makes me mental!!

    Seriously. Toddlerhood has made me reconsider having another child!

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    1. Same! The urge to have a second child has definitely decreased since toddlerhood crept up on us.

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  2. Hehehehehe! Discipline. What a messy thing. I think whatever works in your home is the best way. Toddlers are so good at teaching us patience and understanding. It's amazing! X

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    1. Agreed, as with all baby things, you have to do what works for you. I have to admit though, patience does not come easily to me!

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  3. we do a variation on this with some success. i think i need to be a bit calmer when going through the steps. i love that you advised saying "no." there are a lot of "gentle parenting" techniques i try to follow but i just cannot get on board with the not saying no. i firmly believe little ones need to be taught some boundaries and the difference between yes and no. and this can still be done in a gentle manner. best of luck!

    p.s. i know all about the "f you" look. ramona gives it to me all the time.

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    1. Wow, I hadn't read that 'No' was out of fashion! Crazy!

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