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What is that GD style...finding acceptable solutions for both parent and child? - Page 3

post #41 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post

To deny feedback in the form of manipulative praise, which is what Alfie Kohn talks about, is only to deny feedback in the form of manipulative praise. It does not deny children all feedback on the way their social world works. He's just talking about behaviorism - saying "good job" or other praise as a reward to try to get children to behave how we want them to behave. I don't know where he talks about criticism. He is only opposed to behaviorism - punishment and rewards - so helpful criticism wouldn't really be part of that. It isn't about being stone faced and not reacting to anything.

yeahthat.gif. You said that much better than I ever could. I don't praise my children in order to get them to behave a certain way but I do express my excitement or joy or surprise or anger or hurt when they do things that genuinely affect me. One thing that has been bugging me lately is the instructors at their Tae Kwon Do school. They do a lot of "good job" and high fives for things that don't seem necessary to me. There's no way around that in those types of setting, though.

I read a blog or an article a while ago that has me wondering. By the title, I thought I'd really dislike it. It was something like, "I won't let you"...the next best phrase after "I love you." But the idea was that when a child does something such as hitting, rather than just telling them to stop, don't do it or something along those lines, you say, "I won't let you hit because it hurts." The idea that you won't let it happen makes a difference in understanding to the child. I have to deal with that a lot between my boys. They get angry and frustrated and one hits the other. I tried this the other day and they both just stopped mid-fighting and asked me why not. Then we got into a discussion about how hitting hurts. I have talked to them before about that but for some reason the fact that I told them I would not let them do it made them stop and think. What you all think of that?
post #42 of 148

That may be what he means, but I read enough Kohn threads here back in the day to know that he was frequently interpreted to be saying "Any evaluative comment whatsoever is manipulative and should be avoided."  

 

The number of people suggesting that a good response to "Do you like my picture, Mama?" was "You used a lot of green.  What do you think about your picture?"  is pretty telling.  

 

In fact, here's Kohn himsel, suggesting we stick with "You used a lot of purple," rather than saying something that might give the child feedback on how her work affects others.

 

 

 

Quote:

And what can we say when kids just do something impressive? Consider three possible responses:

* Say nothing. Some people insist a helpful act must be "reinforced" because, secretly or unconsciously, they believe it was a fluke. If children are basically evil, then they have to be given an artificial reason for being nice (namely, to get a verbal reward). But if that cynicism is unfounded – and a lot of research suggests that it is – then praise may not be necessary.

* Say what you saw. A simple, evaluation-free statement ("You put your shoes on by yourself" or even just "You did it") tells your child that you noticed. It also lets her take pride in what she did. In other cases, a more elaborate description may make sense. If your child draws a picture, you might provide feedback – not judgment – about what you noticed: "This mountain is huge!" "Boy, you sure used a lot of purple today!"

If a child does something caring or generous, you might gently draw his attention to the effect of his action on the other person: "Look at Abigail’s face! She seems pretty happy now that you gave her some of your snack." This is completely different from praise, where the emphasis is on how you feel about her sharing

* Talk less, ask more. Even better than descriptions are questions. Why tell him what part of his drawing impressed you when you can ask him what he likes best about it? Asking "What was the hardest part to draw?" or "How did you figure out how to make the feet the right size?" is likely to nourish his interest in drawing. Saying "Good job!", as we’ve seen, may have exactly the opposite effect.

 

 

 

post #43 of 148
Those examples are presented as something to say when you're impressed by something they did, not something to say when the ask you if you like something. If a child asks me if I like something, I say "yes". But I don't continually offer up praise when they do stuff that impresses me. I say something else, or wonder whether they need a running commentary from me and whether I need to express my opinion on it at all. Kids need feedback, but they don't need a play by play on how we feel about everything they do in their lives.
post #44 of 148
Thread Starter 

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by DevaMajka View PostNow, I DO think that they get something when you say "Shiloh doesn't like to be hit. It hurts her." But I think what they get has more to do with knowing that you don't want them to hit, and that you are giving them information on how they are affecting the other person, moreso than truly understanding how it affects the other person. It's similar to when children are very young, and explanations seem to help them do the right thing. I don't think they truly understand all of the words, they just get that you are trying to work with them, and that you have a reason.
Originally Posted by MarineWife View Post
I read a blog or an article a while ago that has me wondering. By the title, I thought I'd really dislike it. It was something like, "I won't let you"...the next best phrase after "I love you." But the idea was that when a child does something such as hitting, rather than just telling them to stop, don't do it or something along those lines, you say, "I won't let you hit because it hurts." The idea that you won't let it happen makes a difference in understanding to the child. 

 

These are two interesting ideas. If I try to look back on early childhood and the act of hitting I recall thinking that most children who hit lack impulse control and/or the ability to really understand their actions.  This would go in line with DM's study AND I love how it can be applied to the article MW read.  I like the "I won't let you" because it can be interpreted to mean that children need help to not hit -- that the responsibility of something so huge is not 100% on them.  Of all things a parent is going to step in and help with I would think this should be a top priority.  
 

Quote:

Originally Posted by savithny View Post

 

The number of people suggesting that a good response to "Do you like my picture, Mama?" was "You used a lot of green.  What do you think about your picture?"  is pretty telling.  

 

In fact, here's Kohn himsel, suggesting we stick with "You used a lot of purple," rather than saying something that might give the child feedback on how her work affects others.

 

Not having read AK in a long time (but having loved him back in the day!), I take a slightly different view.  I always thought of AK's suggestions like "Talk about the purple brush strokes" as a suggestion on how to give more valuable feedback about the child's work.  At least that's how I chose to read that type of suggestions.  So rather than saying "Good job." We say something like, "I really think the purple brush strokes make the yellow sun the focus of the painting."  Less empty praise; more constructive feedback.  

 

We are having a AK issue in our extended family right now.  DC (9 years) has really made a huge stride in reading this year and it is a huge accomplishment as a result of hard work.  We are having a celebration for her (she chose to have it) but my inlaws keep saying "I'm so proud of you."  I guess I may be an AK mama through and through because I really wish they wouldn't say that.  I feel like DC interprets this as they are not proud of her at other times.  I also feel like this takes away from her accomplishment that is for HER as an individual and makes it about them...sigh.  

post #45 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by IdentityCrisisMama View Post

We are having a celebration for her (she chose to have it) but my inlaws keep saying "I'm so proud of you."  I guess I may be an AK mama through and through because I really wish they wouldn't say that.  I feel like DC interprets this as they are not proud of her at other times

That's the type of thing that concerns me with that sort of praise. I worry that it conveys the idea that the child is only worthy when they do things we like. I avoid using that phrase no matter what because I want my child to feel worthy just for existing not because of something specific he's done. My 4yo asks me why I love him and I say because he's my child. That's enough.
post #46 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by savithny View Post

As I recall, back in the heyday of there being lots and lots of hardcore CL people on this board, a lot of them claimed that a big part of their interpretation of CL or TCS philosophy was not just treating children like real people -- but assuming they were rational human beings with the same thought processes as adults.

 

This is where I seriously part ways with those people.   As I said, back then, my then-5-yo had a perfectly rational -- to HIM -- belief that Thomas the Tank Engine was real.    Kids have real, verifiable differences in how they see the world around them, and there is a real, identifiable, process of developing social cognition to understand that other people have different points of view and that your actions can affect others in certain ways.  It's unfair to that developmental process to make a small child utterly responsible for things like her future dental health before she has a real concept of what "future" means (or what "dental health" means, for that matter).  

 

This process is also where I part ways with hardcore Kohn fans, too.   Children learn the rules of their social group, and how their actions affect others, and how they fit into human groups, through the reactions of adults to their actions.   They specifically do things to prompt reactions, actually.   They are intensely aware of our facial expressions from the time they are *minutes* old, and they want to know what those epxresions mean and what actions prompt them.   To never offer constructive praise or criticism denies children something they are instinctively looking for -- feedback on the way their social world works.  


I was in agreement until I got to the last sentence. I think it's completely possible to give feedback without praise.

I used to be very much in the "don't praise" category. It still makes logical sense to me, but I'm just not so sure it's the best way to go. So I've been a little more generous with my "evaluative praise" in some situations. "That picture is fantastic! I love it!" (then add something specific). Or in situations where I'm trying to teach a specific task, for example: teaching ds2 to blow his nose. When he does it right, I might say "Perfect!" or "Good" or something like that. I could easily convey to him that he's done what I asked without those words, but oh well. (for example "yes, you are blowing your nose! That's how you get all the snot out!" something like that.)

However, it still bothers me when people praise kids for doing things that the kids are doing for their own enjoyment. Like sliding down the slide. Or climbing on things. And when I say "it bothers me" I just mean that I notice that it's unecessary, and disrupts what the kid is doing, if even for just a second. It puts emphasis on how the parent feels about what the kid is doing. I certainly don't think those parents are bad parents, or that they are hurting their kids. I don't think excessive praise is too bad, in the whole scheme of things. lol (I DO disagree with some types of praising, but I very rarely see that irl. Like the types where parents or grandparents specifically withhold praise unless the child does something incredible, that is worthy of praise in their opinion, as a way to motivate them to keep doing better and better. Imo, that's sad.)

My grandma praises my kids for every little thing they do. Eating food. Playing with toys. Giving hugs. lol. Everything. I've actually come to think it's cute. At least they don't feel conditionally loved around her. :D
 

 

post #47 of 148


I am enjoying this discussion, the best I've seen on the topic. It helps me sort things out in my own mind, as I admit I'm kind of conflicted.  I'm not loving the " you used a lot of purple" approach either but I think I understand why he advocates it. I do love the advice about looking for the effect on others and how it affected them as opposed to "you statements" like ' you were so kind to share your snack/toy'. That is the part of Kohn that I fell in love with in the first place.

 

Reading this now and re thinking it, how much can you expect a young child to see a situation from anothers perspective or consider another feelings?  I've always known it was a lofty goal but thought it worthwhile. Now, I'm wondering if it's too unfair to put such expectations on a child, is too abstract,  does it put too much pressure on them, which could leave them confused? Do they need more concrete boundaries? Can a parent create those boundaries and still have the child's motivation be intrinsic?

 

I like the idea of phrasing it " I will not let you" that brings up the question of what is the parent going to do to stop it? I know with my child I can't simply say ' I will not let you" and that be the end of the issue. He will do it again and now how do I follow through on that statement, which implies I'm going to do something to prevent him or stop him but if I want to be non punitive and non bribing how do I follow through?

post #48 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeacemongerMom View Post


 

 

Reading this now and re thinking it, how much can you expect a young child to see a situation from anothers perspective or consider another feelings?  I've always known it was a lofty goal but thought it worthwhile. Now, I'm wondering if it's too unfair to put such expectations on a child, is too abstract,  does it put too much pressure on them, which could leave them confused? Do they need more concrete boundaries? Can a parent create those boundaries and still have the child's motivation be intrinsic?

 

 

I don't think you can *expect* them to see how their actions affect others (until a certain age, but that will vary with each child), but it's definitely worthwhile to *tell* them how their actions affect others. I think just the fact that you tell them will make a difference in their actions (eventually). They might not really get it, but I think they have a general idea of what's going on, kwim? Then there's the impulse control thing, and it's hard to tell if, for example, your toddler is hitting the dog because he has no idea that she doesn't like or, or it he's hitting her because he had the impulse and he just can't stop himself. Either way, your reaction is about the same. I'm just saying that they get the understanding gradually, and you don't really know when.

 

Quote:

 

I like the idea of phrasing it " I will not let you" that brings up the question of what is the parent going to do to stop it? I know with my child I can't simply say ' I will not let you" and that be the end of the issue. He will do it again and now how do I follow through on that statement, which implies I'm going to do something to prevent him or stop him but if I want to be non punitive and non bribing how do I follow through?
 

For me, it means physically stopping him, and taking him away from the situation if necessary.

With my older son (who I tried really hard to be CL with, btw), if explaining, redirecting, etc didn't work, I could usually say "Should we take this away to take away the temptation to climb on it?" and he would agree that the thing should be put away.

Ds2...he's different. I often wonder if that's because I've never tried to be CL with him. I try to be respectful of him as a human being, and remember that his needs/opinions/wants are just as important as anyone else's. It's a little harder with 2 kids, but I try. He just gets stuck in the action, and can't stop himself. To be fair, he's not even 2yo yet. I'm working on being more UP with him, and working on not using physical force (ie: picking him up and carrying him when he won't go on his own) as much. Anyways, he gets stuck in the action of, say, running into the dog with his tricycle. And he will.not.stop. And when we try to stop him, he just keeps on trying over and over and over. He even has this laugh, and we know that he's just stuck in the impulse. We physically stop him, either by holding his tricycle or by taking the dog to another room and shutting the door.

So I guess it means physically stopping them, and being watchful to try to stop situations before they get to that point.

post #49 of 148
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeacemongerMom View Post

Reading this now and re thinking it, how much can you expect a young child to see a situation from anothers perspective or consider another feelings?  I've always known it was a lofty goal but thought it worthwhile. Now, I'm wondering if it's too unfair to put such expectations on a child, is too abstract,  does it put too much pressure on them, which could leave them confused? Do they need more concrete boundaries? Can a parent create those boundaries and still have the child's motivation be intrinsic?

 

 

I think you have a good point.  I have a gut feeling that maybe some things we do as GD parents (and its range of philosophies) may well backfire a bit and, like you said, put too much pressure on kids.  I can't think of a good example right now but I do remember times when the most GD, CL or UP (and etc.) approach was in reality not as gentle for my DC than something else that may have looked insensitive in comparison.  Perhaps that's not what you had in mind though...

 

I also agree with DM that even if they don't understand at a young age it is helpful to start telling them.  It will gradually sink in.  

 

 
Originally Posted by PeacemongerMom View Post

I like the idea of phrasing it " I will not let you" that brings up the question of what is the parent going to do to stop it? I know with my child I can't simply say ' I will not let you" and that be the end of the issue. He will do it again and now how do I follow through on that statement, which implies I'm going to do something to prevent him or stop him but if I want to be non punitive and non bribing how do I follow through?


I agree with DM.  "I will not let you" when it comes to things like rough physical actions would look like some sort of physical restraint.  When my DC went through a phase where she was biting or hitting I just got really close to her and watched closely for when she may act on that impulse.  For my DC what that looked like was me just kind of gently touching her to remind her that gentle touches feel nice.  For other kids that may look like moving the "hit-ie" away, distraction (if you're ok with that), and etc.  It was my belief that for many kids if you could just be super, super diligent for a few days and make them successful in not hitting/biting (however it works) they would kind of forget that they were interested in doing it.  

 

I also like the idea of parents taking responsiblity for the hitting (at a young age) over punitive or reward based discipline because it implies that, as a parent, you truly understand that the child lacks impulse control.  If the parent tries bribery or punishment it implies that they think the child can restrain themselves but chooses not to...unless the price is right.  It's just way sweeter to keep in mind that young kids are not in control of that (which is true, imo).  

 

 


 

post #50 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by IdentityCrisisMama View Post



 

 

I think you have a good point.  I have a gut feeling that maybe some things we do as GD parents (and its range of philosophies) may well backfire a bit and, like you said, put too much pressure on kids.  I can't think of a good example right now but I do remember times when the most GD, CL or UP (and etc.) approach was in reality not as gentle for my DC than something else that may have looked insensitive in comparison.  Perhaps that's not what you had in mind though...

 

 

That was my experience too. I was trying to be CL, and it wasn't really a good match for me. (I will say that I don't think I was doing it "right"). I found that I was trying to make ds1 choose to do things my way. Not all of the time, but enough. I think that was harder on him than if I'd just insisted on some things, or made some things happen. Mind you, he is a really considerate, friendly, compassionate person. So I think there was a lot of good come from it too. It worked way better for both of us when I started being more direct, and insisting when necessary and working with him all the time.
 

 

Quote:
 

 

I also like the idea of parents taking responsiblity for the hitting (at a young age) over punitive or reward based discipline because it implies that, as a parent, you truly understand that the child lacks impulse control.  If the parent tries bribery or punishment it implies that they think the child can restrain themselves but chooses not to...unless the price is right.  It's just way sweeter to keep in mind that young kids are not in control of that (which is true, imo).  

The other day, ds1 was on a swing, and ds2 walked behind him and got knocked over. One of ds1's friends blamed ds1, and ds1 blamed ds2. In reality, if it's anybody's fault, it was mine. I was the one who was responsible for watching ds2. Ds1 couldn't possibly have seen ds2, and ds2 just doesn't understand the possible consequences of things like that.

I think hitting is like that for young kids.

post #51 of 148
It's also the responsibility of the parent to make sure her child does not hurt others. The swing incident wasn't purposeful so it wasn't the younger child's fault. However, if your child is about to hit another child, it's not only appropriate but obligatory for the parent to stop the child even if that means grabbing the child's arm or hand and/or removing the child from the situation. It's not fair to everyone else to stay there with your child when s/he is hurting others.

If either of my boys or both are hurting each other, I will physically separate them. If I have to, I will take one in another room. I think a lot of times how something like that is perceived depends on how it's done. If I can do that without anger and just explain that I cannot allow them to hurt each other and feel that the only thing I can do at that point is separate them, then I am helping both children. If I get angry and yell and send one to his room or a time out chair alone, then it's punitive.
post #52 of 148

Yes, that's what I meant. It was my responsibility to keep ds2 safe with the swing, and it's my responsibility to keep other people safe from being hit by ds2.

post #53 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarineWife View Post

It's also the responsibility of the parent to make sure her child does not hurt others. The swing incident wasn't purposeful so it wasn't the younger child's fault. However, if your child is about to hit another child, it's not only appropriate but obligatory for the parent to stop the child even if that means grabbing the child's arm or hand and/or removing the child from the situation. It's not fair to everyone else to stay there with your child when s/he is hurting others.

I don't agree that you have to hover by the swings to make sure your child doesn't swing into anyone. If both my kids are at the park, the older one is often swinging while I'm spotting my little monkey who is climbing elsewhere. People need to not walk too closely to swings. If I were by the swings and saw someone was about to be hit, of course I'd intervene - I mean I wouldn't sit there and watch someone get hurt by any means. But obligatory for a parent to be available to stop children from getting hit by their child when he/she is swinging? Maybe I'm misunderstanding, and this is a bit OT anyway, but if people have that belief, then I'm starting a thread asking about it in Parenting, because I'm curious how common a belief that is.
post #54 of 148

I think she's saying that it's a parent's responsibility to keep their young child from hitting other people. Like, hitting/biting/kicking, not referring to swings. That's what I got from it.

 

 

post #55 of 148
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
But obligatory for a parent to be available to stop children from getting hit by their child when he/she is swinging? Maybe I'm misunderstanding, and this is a bit OT anyway, but if people have that belief, then I'm starting a thread asking about it in Parenting, because I'm curious how common a belief that is.


Not MW but I don't think that's what she meant.  I think the swing thing got mixed up in the question of a parent intervening when a child goes through a phase.  I'm a total free range type when it comes to the playground.  Unless there is a child who truly can't look out for themselves (like one who would walk behind a child swinging and get hurt) or there was a child who needed more supervision (perhaps because they are going through an aggressive phase like above) I let the kids roam - I'm a "if they can get up there - they can get down" mama.  

 

post #56 of 148

What a great conversation.  I really like hearing how all these parenting philosophies/labels overlap and work/don't work in people's real lives.  DS1 is only 3.5, so I feel like I'm just coming into the time when I'll be able to put more trust in his decisions and these theories will become more real.  We're planning to unschool too, and it all seems to fit in with that continuum.  The gradual shifts in my perspective brought about by exposure to these relatively simple, yet hugely revolutionary, ideas about relating with kids are taking a lot of energy to integrate into my brain/life.  I'm so glad I found them early on in the journey!

 

Ran across an article recently that had a somewhat relevant tidbit - http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2011/07/how-to-land-your-kid-in-therapy/8555/1/

of course, it's full of the usual mainstreamy cliches and junk, but what I found interesting was the idea of happiness as a goal vs. a state of being.  I don't want my kids to be happy all the time, I want them to feel capable of handling whatever life throws at them.  That means being disappointed sometimes, so they can learn how to handle disappointment and not be afraid of it, etc.  It doesn't mean I'm going to MAKE them disappointed with arbitrary rules and boundaries, though.  That distinction is an important one to me, but I know too often I err on the side of avoiding DS's disappointment rather than deal with the aftermath of disagreement.  Hopefully that will come easier as he gets older - and I suspect having subsequent kids will sort of make it happen, in a way.  I won't be able to fuss as much over the reaction of this kid or that one when there are more of them, right? :)

 

My little brother, who is in his mid-20s and doesn't have kids yet, questioned our parenting of DS when he was visiting over Christmas.  He felt like we "let him have his way" too often and it was inconvenient/permissive.  He was genuinely interested in why we felt the need to be so flexible with DS, and I told him I'd read a lot and thought through a lot and if he was interested in doing the same, I'd love to discuss it in depth sometime (didn't really feel like defending the whole thing off the top of my head during brief family visit).  At the time I was rereading Kohn's Unconditional Parenting and told him I'd send it to him when I was finished, but of course haven't finished and keep forgetting to send it.  I wonder if it'd be too much as an introduction to this type of thinking, though?  I'm interested in a general way in CL and TCS too, haven't read/heard much about TCC, but I think of them all as being a part of the spectrum I'm sort of oriented towards.  Anybody have thoughts about a good starting point?

post #57 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by DevaMajka View Post

I think she's saying that it's a parent's responsibility to keep their young child from hitting other people. Like, hitting/biting/kicking, not referring to swings. That's what I got from it.


Yeah I see how I completely misread that. orngbiggrin.gif Thanks.
post #58 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post

I don't agree that you have to hover by the swings to make sure your child doesn't swing into anyone. If both my kids are at the park, the older one is often swinging while I'm spotting my little monkey who is climbing elsewhere. People need to not walk too closely to swings. If I were by the swings and saw someone was about to be hit, of course I'd intervene - I mean I wouldn't sit there and watch someone get hurt by any means. But obligatory for a parent to be available to stop children from getting hit by their child when he/she is swinging? Maybe I'm misunderstanding, and this is a bit OT anyway, but if people have that belief, then I'm starting a thread asking about it in Parenting, because I'm curious how common a belief that is.

Yeah, what everyone else said. That's not what I meant at all. smile.gif

The swing incident got mixed up in there because I was trying to point out that I didn't think that type of thing was anyone's fault that one child got hit by the swing. I don't hover over my children at all. I was talking about when children get out of control and do things deliberately.
Quote:
I don't want my kids to be happy all the time, I want them to feel capable of handling whatever life throws at them. That means being disappointed sometimes, so they can learn how to handle disappointment and not be afraid of it, etc. It doesn't mean I'm going to MAKE them disappointed with arbitrary rules and boundaries, though.

People have to deal with enough disappointment and unhappiness from the outside world. They don't need more arbitrarily heaped on them at home, to toughen them up or whatever.

I don't think that means it's impossible to be happy all the time. If you can achieve that zen state of not having any attachments to anything, then nothing will cause disappointment. It is what it is and it doesn't affect your mood. I've never been there but there are people who claim to be.

We unschool, too, by the way.
post #59 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by DevaMajka View Post

With my older son (who I tried really hard to be CL with, btw), if explaining, redirecting, etc didn't work, I could usually say "Should we take this away to take away the temptation to climb on it?" and he would agree that the thing should be put away.

Ds2...he's different. I often wonder if that's because I've never tried to be CL with him. I try to be respectful of him as a human being, and remember that his needs/opinions/wants are just as important as anyone else's. It's a little harder with 2 kids, but I try. He just gets stuck in the action, and can't stop himself. To be fair, he's not even 2yo yet. I'm working on being more UP with him, and working on not using physical force (ie: picking him up and carrying him when he won't go on his own) as much. Anyways, he gets stuck in the action of, say, running into the dog with his tricycle. And he will.not.stop. And when we try to stop him, he just keeps on trying over and over and over. He even has this laugh, and we know that he's just stuck in the impulse. We physically stop him, either by holding his tricycle or by taking the dog to another room and shutting the door.


My #1 was like that.  We used to describe it to others just like that "Getting stuck."  He'd often, specifically, "get stuck on 'no.' "  meaning that he'd say "NO!" to something and then get stuck on the idea that HE WAS NOT GOING TO DO IT! even when he was offered alternatives that he normally would have liked.

 

Honestly, part of his issue was that he just wasn't ready for "if-then" or "First-next" statements when we started usign them because "GD experts" said we should.   "Just explain that he has to hold your hand or he has to be carried," people would say.  "Just tell him he has to leave the park so that you can go home to eat dinner," they say.  Well, #1 was the kid screaming "WANT DINNER!  NO WANT TO LEAVE PARK!  WANT DINNER NOW!"  and all the "Honey, there is no dinner at the park.  We have to leave the park to get dinner.  Dinner is at home, and we have to go home from the park to get dinner," made any difference.  

 

Eventually, he grew into being able to process those statements.  But I think trying to use those statements too much when he wasn't developmentally ready for them led to a lot of frustration on both our parts.   I realized that if I just said "We are leaving the park now,"  he'd pitch a fit, but it was an easier fit than if I tried to cajole and reason and reason and cajole and then make a game and then give choices and then make a different game..... "Honey, It's time to go home now."  Pick him up, carry him to the car.  Console him with "We have to go home to get dinner," and then, LATER, after he'd calmed down, we could talk it out: "You didnt' want to leave the park today, did you?   But you know what?  You were happy when we got home and you saw we could eat dinner, right?   Well, we had to leave the park in order to get dinner!"

post #60 of 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by savithny View Post

Honestly, part of his issue was that he just wasn't ready for "if-then" or "First-next" statements when we started usign them because "GD experts" said we should.   "Just explain that he has to hold your hand or he has to be carried," people would say.  "Just tell him he has to leave the park so that you can go home to eat dinner," they say.  Well, #1 was the kid screaming "WANT DINNER!  NO WANT TO LEAVE PARK!  WANT DINNER NOW!"  and all the "Honey, there is no dinner at the park.  We have to leave the park to get dinner.  Dinner is at home, and we have to go home from the park to get dinner," made any difference.  

 

Eventually, he grew into being able to process those statements.  But I think trying to use those statements too much when he wasn't developmentally ready for them led to a lot of frustration on both our parts.   I realized that if I just said "We are leaving the park now,"  he'd pitch a fit, but it was an easier fit than if I tried to cajole and reason and reason and cajole and then make a game and then give choices and then make a different game..... "Honey, It's time to go home now."  Pick him up, carry him to the car.  Console him with "We have to go home to get dinner," and then, LATER, after he'd calmed down, we could talk it out: "You didnt' want to leave the park today, did you?   But you know what?  You were happy when we got home and you saw we could eat dinner, right?   Well, we had to leave the park in order to get dinner!"


There were options to all of these. You could have brought food with you. Then dinner would be at the park. You could not worry about getting home for dinner at a specific time. You could have empathized with him in the moment like you did after he had calmed down without the "buts" and/or continuing to tell him that you still had to go. I'm not saying you should have done any of those things, but they were/are options.
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