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Old 04-02-2012, 08:28 AM   #21
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Have you tried asking her what will work?

I was hit as a child and let me tell you that it taught me nothing positive.

We use modeling and tolerance. Unless something is dangerous, we do not yell. Some battles aren't worth fighting, and children are not and shouldn't be expected to be miniature adults.

Ask your child "I feel sad when you misbehave; what would help you follow the rules?" DO what she asks, even if it's silly. If you do it and she continues the behavior, ask her "This is your way, do we need to try a different way?"


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Old 04-02-2012, 10:30 AM   #22
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We do spank but only if his actions could have or did harm himself or others. Like running out in a parking lot or throwing at someone. As for not listening, I will put him in time out for 3 minutes (one minute per year of age). After 3 minutes, I ask him to do it again. If he still refuses, he has to go sit back down until he is ready to do it. And I have a chair I pull out in the middle of the room. He plays with walls...

At dinner, we tell him he has until blah to finish eating. At blah we take his food away and send him to bed. I have also told him if he doesn't want to eat, he can go straight to bed now.

Married since 1-23-07. 2 beautiful sons born 4-24-08 and 11-3-11. 1 baby waiting in heaven since 1-13-11.
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Old 04-02-2012, 10:31 AM   #23
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And whining - I just send him to his room and tell him to come out when he is ready to act like a big boy. The cool down time does us both good.

Married since 1-23-07. 2 beautiful sons born 4-24-08 and 11-3-11. 1 baby waiting in heaven since 1-13-11.
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Old 04-02-2012, 10:38 AM   #24
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Re: Parents who don't spank... who DO have obedient kids, how do you discipline?

I highly, highly recommend you get the book "Playful Parenting" and read it cover to cover. I think it will really change the way you see your kids' behavior and the way you react to them. I'm not being melodramatic when I say the book literally changed my (and my kids') life.

One of the analagies he uses in the book is that of children having "cups." Certain things can empty their cups, and certain things can fill them. Yelling at them, spanking them, and disrespecting them all empty their cups. Playing with them, giving them positive attention, and showering them with affection fill their cups. Kids with empty cups act out and "disobey" more than kids with full cups. These behaviors happen because they need their cups refilled.

Originally Posted by donnyandmelissa View Post
We spank our kids. I am starting to regret my decision. But here is the thing. I can't stand disobedience, disrespect, etc. I may come off as rude but I don't want to let my kids walk all over me for the sake of them "being themselves" I have heard.

My #1 complaint is repeating myself. I don't want to have to tell my 4 yr old over and over to eat and not play, sing, talk at the table. (she is skinny and actually just this past month got to the 4th percentile she was prescribed pediasure and a special diet) So am I mean for forcing her to eat. If it were up to her she would sit there for an hour and not be done.
Talking, singing, and playing at the table are what make our meal times enjoyable as a family. Maybe your daughter feels too much pressure to eat and is resisting because of the pressure. Sometimes it takes a long time to eat a meal, but I don't try to rush it unless we need to be somwhere because it's just fun family time and they eat more and better if we don't focus on the eating so much as the being together, if that makes sense?

One of the ideas in the book is to make these sorts of things into a game, when kids dawdle and won't do things quickly. So what you could do is get two stuffed animals, and have one say in a mean voice "I don't think she can eat her supper...she doesn't know how to eat properly." Then the other one could say "Yes she does, I've seen her do it before." Then your daughter will probably laugh and say "Yes I can! Watch!"

There are so many things that I feel silly spanking her for but they are clearly not working in our house. For example...

My 8 month old refuses to nurse unless there is complete silence. She runs and jumps and sings. I tell her for 10 minutes I need you to sit down and do puzzles or read books. Nope.
This is another case where the playful parenting book would come in really handy for you. She's probably not listening because she needs her cup to be full. If you give her positive attention and play with her, give her one on one attention before you nurse, she'll probably be more likely to play on her own for awhile.

Whining. She whines if she is bored, hungry, you name it if she wants it she whines.

So here is the problem. If we don't spank then what works? Time out does NOT work for her. She could stand there all day.
We dont' do time outs, we do "time ins" as recommended by the playful parenting book. Kids who misbehave are often feeling out of control and isolated, and putting them in time out isolates them even further, and the behavior will continue because they don't know how to feel connected. They don't have the emotional ability to express that they feel lonely/isolated/disconnected, so as long as you continue to put them in time out, they'll keep doing whatever it is.

If the kids do something they're not supposed to, we have a "meeting on the couch." We sit down and have a cuddle and figure out a solution. So "You hit your sister. Was that because you were angry that she took your doll?" Then, "What do you think you could do next time that happens?" It puts the solution in the kids' hands, instead of you just nagging over and over again.

I really hope any of this helps you. It should be obvious that I don't think spanking is effective. I also think if you want respect from your kids, you need to show them respect too, and spanking is about the most degrating, isolating thing you can do to a small person who is only beginning to learn about the world.
Megan wife of my soldier Steve, mama to my beautiful girls Rowan (11/07) and Linden (03/10)!
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Old 04-02-2012, 11:05 AM   #25
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We do not spank. Right now we do a version of 1-2-3 Magic. It works great. I am not completely sold on the idea though. I want to explore some other discipline options, especially as she is getting older and has more ability to reason. But in the meantime 1-2-3 Magic does the trick.

We also do a fair amount of time-outs with one parent present. I guess it is similar to what some PPs are calling "time-ins". Usually DH takes her to her room and they discuss what she did and what she should be doing.

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Old 04-02-2012, 11:22 AM   #26
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Re: Parents who don't spank... who DO have obedient kids, how do you discipline?

We don't spank. We used time outs when she was younger but she's going on 5...time outs don't do much anymore. We use a few other techniques instead. First, we praise her when she's behaving well. I don't want to only focus on the bad so if she's behaving/listening well (especially in public), I'll tell her what a good job she's doing and how happy that makes us. If she's not behaving well, she loses things. No trip to the park or pool, no TV time, no playing outside with friends, or no access to the play room (we reserve this for the few times she refuses to pick up the toys after she's done playing.) If she's just a hot mess and can't be dealt with, she goes to her room. This is pretty rare for her though and there's usually something big (illness, food dyes, etc) triggering her behavior. Sending her to her room gives us both time to calm down and gives me time to figure out what in the world is causing the problem.

I'm no helping with the eating issue but perhaps you could find a different activity she can do while you're nursing and then have some one on one time right after your done? That way she doesn't feel left out that the baby is getting quality time with you while she's on her own.

Obviously it won't help right now since your youngest is so little, but once she gets a little bit older, I'd have a talk with your daughter about how her behavior affects her little sister. We talked with dd shortly after ds turned one and explained how much fun being a big sister is, but it also means we need to be mindful of our behavior because, while she gets to teach him really cool and fun things, he watches her ALL the time and will act like her. If she doesn't want him yelling and throwing ridiculous fits, she needs to control herself. Seems to be helping
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:59 PM   #27
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Re: Parents who don't spank... who DO have obedient kids, how do you discipline?

I believe in guidence rather than punishments. I know this probably sounds dumb, but we talk to our kids. We've started when they were really small so they know that certain things are not ok. I also believe in natural consequences (as long as it's not dangerous). Example would be if my kids didn't want to wear shoes when the ground is cold. I'm not going to have this huge battle with them, so I will let them take a step outside, it will be cold and then they will put their shoes on. I also believe in talking to them calmly because I think yelling only escalates a problem and doesn't teach them how to deal with their emoitions well enough. Certain things we do not get into a battle with because I believe they are normal toddler behavior, like temper tantrums. I just let them have it and then it's done.

This is what has worked for us, and our kids do not walk all over us. They are actually very well mannered and respectful.
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Old 04-02-2012, 01:17 PM   #28
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Re: Parents who don't spank... who DO have obedient kids, how do you discipline?

I have between 6-8 kids in my house at all times. None of them are spanked, all of them are obedient. ALL of them. Not just to me either, they are respectful and obedient to all their caretakers.

I never spanked my own child, and she's the most compliant, respectful young lady around. She's a good employee who is willing to work a little harder, or pick up slack for others who need some help.

All of us (daycare parents, and myself) use the principal of "You are responsible for the choices you make". I refuse to bail out my child unless she's truly not responsible for what happened. We constantly say "How are you going to fix that?"

It's hard, but if she forgot her lunch, she had to find a solution. (she always managed) If she forgot her project that was due... she took the low grade, AND she still took the project to school the next day. I made it as easy for her as possible, I always set her up for success, but I didn't ever DO it for her.

Kids NEED outlets. They need to run, play, jump, climb without the constant supervision of adults. They don't need to be constantly watched or listened to. They don't need adult participation at all times. They can jump off of high things, and it's usually OK, if it hurts, they usually won't do the same thing over again....or they'll do it differently next time.

Kids NEED to roughhouse without being told to stop. They can be told to go outside, or in the basement, or in the family room...but, they need to push each other and hit each other with couch pillows.

When they are a little older, they need to experiment with the things that fascinate them. Maybe it's cutting things with knives, or lightning things with lighters. You can set them up in the yard with matches, candles, or a fire pit, and let them experiment...but, discuss why we don't take the newspaper and light it. Let them get it out of their system in a controlled environment.

Once you stop controlling what comes naturally to kids, they tend to listen when you are serious. Mean what you say, and say only what you mean. If you make a threat... be sure you are willing to back it up, or make it so absurd that they know you aren't serious. ("I'm selling you on craigslist")

Running across the park and back is fine... but, running in the parking lot is a deal breaker. If they can't control running feet in a parking lot, they need to sit in a shopping cart, or stay home with Daddy until they can control it.

Being loud at McDonalds is totally awesome...but, being loud in Olive Garden.. notsumuch. Kids will always rise to our expectations, if we make our expectations reasonable. If they aren't ready to be in Olive Garden, don't take them.... set them up for success, and always choose which hill you are willing to die on. If it's not a big deal, ignore it.
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Old 04-02-2012, 01:56 PM   #29
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Re: Parents who don't spank... who DO have obedient kids, how do you discipline?

My DD is 2 and I use time out. Time out was the main form of discipline my parents used for myself and my 3 sisters... we had a variety of personalities and it was effective for all of us... we were never spanked. I use time out to stop/interrupt a behavior before it escalates, and I try not to think of it as punishment, just intervention and redirection. If I see DD is losing self-control, losing her temper or I ask her to do something more than a couple of times, I say "time out" and point to a spot. I leave her there until she is calm and attentive to me (no timer, I know she is ready to come out when she is sitting quietly looking at me.) Usually, DD is in time out for about 30 seconds before that happens, but when she is over tired and having a tantrum it can take a few minutes. When I get her out of time out I always say the same type of thing "You were in time out because you were not listening to Mommy. You need to listen to Mommy and do what I ask. Please say sorry and give me a hug. You are a good girl and I love you very much, but you need to listen to Mommy. Go play, time out is over." It is kind of funny, because I have been very consistent with this format for 8ish months now and DD is starting to recognize when she is losing control of her emotions and needs a timeout. Often, when she is getting whiny and upset I can ask her if she needs a time out and she will say yes and go put herself in one.
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Old 04-02-2012, 02:36 PM   #30
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Re: Parents who don't spank... who DO have obedient kids, how do you discipline?

Second post is what we do. I hope it helps you in some way. If there is anything I need to clarify, ask...I figured it was just easier to link the thread than to C and P.
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