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Old 04-08-2010, 07:22 AM   #1
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When to start time outs?

I know it has been answered here before and i did a search but didn't find anything for my ds's age. When should i start time outs?
Ds is 21 months and has hitting issues. He will hit his big sister(4.5 yr old). I didn't have this problem with dd because it was just her. Is 21 months old too young.
I did a practice time out yesterday and after placing ds back into the corner 3 times he stayed for 30 seconds. I did the whole you are in time out because and the hugs and kisses part. He can't talk say he is sorry but he did give a hug when asked. I just don't know if he is still too young for this but i need to get this hitting under control somehow.

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Old 04-08-2010, 07:34 AM   #2
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Re: When to start time outs?

Well, I don't do time outs per se. What we do is when DD is getting out-of-control (in her typical firey redheaded 2yo kind of way ) then I tell her it's time to calm down, and suggest that she sit on the corner of the sofa until she cools off. I don't consider it a time out, because I want HER to be able to go there and regain control of herself instead of "making" her sit somewhere for a specified period of time. Either way, we started that around 18mos when she really started testing limits and throwing tantrums.

If he is hitting, I would take him aside and find out WHY he is hitting, explain why we DON'T hit, and give him an opportunity to sit somewhere and calm down. Hopefully this would give him insight on his own feelings and find a way to control them without resorting to hitting. Well, that's the hope anyway...they ARE still toddlers
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Old 04-08-2010, 08:28 AM   #3
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Re: When to start time outs?

Just depends on whether or not they understand it. Depending on the child distraction and separation might work better at your LOs age. What we did was get down eye level, take him by both hands, and say very firmly, "NO. NO HITTING." Then maybe say "That hurts. That's not nice." Or something like that. At that age they just don't have the attention span. My older girls tried time out with my son when he was right around 2.5. I just laughed because he wouldn't stay. He'll be three next weekend and we still do distraction and separation along with quick firm reprimands. He just moves around too much and I doubt he'd stay in time out now.
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Old 04-08-2010, 09:37 AM   #4
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Re: When to start time outs?

Yes, we use TO with our 18 month old. It can be really helpful!! At this age consequences speak much louder than explanations! They don't have to be super long I'd say a few minutes max.
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Old 04-08-2010, 09:42 AM   #5
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Re: When to start time outs?

I started way TOO early with my son (about 16 months) and it was pointless. He didn't get the concept of time out until sometimes after he turned 2.

My little girl is 17 months and I look back and roll my eyes at myself wondering what I was thinking trying to put a BABY in time out. At her age all you can you do is remove her from the situation and talk to her about why we do not hit/throw/pinch...
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Old 04-08-2010, 09:42 AM   #6
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Re: When to start time outs?

We've been using "timeouts" for 21 month old DD since she was about 15 months...BUT hers is more for calming down than a discipline thing. Every child is different and will understand the concept at a different point in their development, but I would say 2-3 would be a good time for most kids.

Miss B needs those calm down times multiple times a day..she's a red headed drama queen with a temper that belongs to a grown man with 'roid rage. She is flat out NUTS when she gets frustrated or angry about anything. She'll punch, kick, shove, throw things, fling herself against walls, throw herself to the floor, and she actually picked up a kitchen chair yesterday and threw it...they aren't wood and heavy, but I still never thought she could do that. The chair incident was all because I told her she couldn't eat the entire block of cheese, but I would be more than happy to cut her off a piece or two
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Old 04-08-2010, 09:47 AM   #7
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Re: When to start time outs?

We do something like a timeout which I don't feel that your son would be too young for. When the kids are doing something like hitting, they are reminded that they do not hit or they will have to go to the corner. If they hit again, they are told (or taken) to the corner. There is no time limit. They can come back as soon as they are ready to apologize and follow the rules. They also remain in the corner until their tantrum is done if they decide to throw one. Sometimes they sit for just a second and come out but they are put right back in if they choose to disobey. Sometimes they will stay for a few minutes on their own. I have had kids barely walking that this works for. I put them there and then go about my business and they come out when they are ready to follow the rules. It is not so much a punishment as separating them from a situation that they clearly can't handle at the moment. It gives them a chance to catch their breath, be reminded of the rules and choose to follow them on their own. I do not force the kids to remain there with physical restraint. It usually takes about a week for them to "get it". I don't feel that your son is too young for some sort of consequence.
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Old 04-08-2010, 10:44 AM   #8
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Re: When to start time outs?

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Originally Posted by doodah View Post
We do something like a timeout which I don't feel that your son would be too young for. When the kids are doing something like hitting, they are reminded that they do not hit or they will have to go to the corner. If they hit again, they are told (or taken) to the corner. There is no time limit. They can come back as soon as they are ready to apologize and follow the rules. They also remain in the corner until their tantrum is done if they decide to throw one. Sometimes they sit for just a second and come out but they are put right back in if they choose to disobey. Sometimes they will stay for a few minutes on their own. I have had kids barely walking that this works for. I put them there and then go about my business and they come out when they are ready to follow the rules. It is not so much a punishment as separating them from a situation that they clearly can't handle at the moment. It gives them a chance to catch their breath, be reminded of the rules and choose to follow them on their own. I do not force the kids to remain there with physical restraint. It usually takes about a week for them to "get it". I don't feel that your son is too young for some sort of consequence.
I agree. This worked with both of children from a fairly young age.
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Old 04-08-2010, 12:14 PM   #9
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Re: When to start time outs?

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Originally Posted by doodah View Post
We do something like a timeout which I don't feel that your son would be too young for. When the kids are doing something like hitting, they are reminded that they do not hit or they will have to go to the corner. If they hit again, they are told (or taken) to the corner. There is no time limit. They can come back as soon as they are ready to apologize and follow the rules. They also remain in the corner until their tantrum is done if they decide to throw one. Sometimes they sit for just a second and come out but they are put right back in if they choose to disobey. Sometimes they will stay for a few minutes on their own. I have had kids barely walking that this works for. I put them there and then go about my business and they come out when they are ready to follow the rules. It is not so much a punishment as separating them from a situation that they clearly can't handle at the moment. It gives them a chance to catch their breath, be reminded of the rules and choose to follow them on their own. I do not force the kids to remain there with physical restraint. It usually takes about a week for them to "get it". I don't feel that your son is too young for some sort of consequence.
This is what we do, too...I think we started around 12 months, when we started watching us just before he did something he knew he wasn't suppposed to to see what reaction he'd get!
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