Help, I'm in tears!!
Have you ever heard of the book Don't Shoot the Dog ? Even though it is not all that socially acceptable that is probably one of my biggest parent-behavior-training books. No I don't think my kids are dogs. But treating them like non-rational beings I have to sometimes deal with is useful for my brain. I love this book. It has been very helpful for both me and my husband.
And from the husband point of view--it's not exactly hand-holdy and woo woo. It's concrete and specific about why different training behaviors work and don't work. I know some people don't believe in behavioralist training but I think that all cultural context is about behaviorism in action.
Spanking will teach your child things you don't mean to teach. I'm fairly fanatically anti-spanking. It's a stress relief for the parent not a teaching tool for the kid. :(
My response got lost so briefly. Check out the Ross Greene's CPS - collaborative problem solving approach. The mantra is kids do well if they can , not if they want to - they mostly want to do well , be successful, adaptive and flexible. In order to help your dh wear the lenses of lagging skills being the source of his challenging behavior check out the ALSUP - assessed lagging skills and unsolved problems list. Lagging skills are taught by indirectly by actally enaging in cps. The focus is on unsolved problems - not behaviors . The mistake people make is that they present their ' CONCERNS' in terms of solutions - so discussions become - duelling solutions rather than getting first a clear picture of the kids concerns , then putting our concerns on the table, defining the problem , then brainstorming realistic and durable solutions , agreeing to come back to the drawing board if the 1st solution does not work.
so bedtime - what are his concerns , often a kid is not tired - here melatonin helps to reset his biological clock , create a bed time ritual with him , include breating, meditation, self soothing
transitions - help him give him warning , use a timer , find out what his concerns are when transitioning
rewards, consequences don't teach skills , may help to get compliance in the short term but more than often promotes meltdowns in stead of thinking and perspective taking
try lower the rope with Plan C , so that there are fewer negative interactions and gives time for connecting and doing thing together , using ' guided participation ' - promoting thinking.
and trying to use Plan B to solve actual problems. Plan B is messy , not easy , not a magic bullet .
check out a collection of video clips on CPS http://tinyurl.com/c7chvj7
I hope this helps
Also useful for trnasitioning to create with him a schedule using pictures , so it is his list that is giving him the cues and not you telling him what to do . We need to be responsive to kids who have low frustration tolerance , inflexible and not adapptive when the demands that outstrip their skills are placed on them
Bedtimes can be a big struggle. . . what is your talking about bedtime earlier in the day like, with your ds? What are your ds's biggest concerns (or most important things to look forward to - I'm guessing tv watching?) that are part of bedtime? Are there actually too many steps - too drawn out a ritual (we have 1 dd who likes a long and involved bedtime and another who just can't do all kinds of stuff at bedtime and needs it to be just 2-3 tasks)?. Does he hate one or two particular things? Does he need cool-down time (like tv watching)?
Could you separate tv watching from bedtime or do baths/hair washing less often (assuming he isn't very dirty)? Would either of those things help? (just guessing they might be disliked/liked from your post and making bedtime not contingent or involved with them may help?). There are so many ways you can do bedtime - it takes time to find the right way for your ds. And it might change sometimes.
Realistically, I doubt that spanking your ds in this situation will end up with him going "oh, now I see" and peacefully get ready for bed calmly, yk? Having that happen is a process you all work at together.
Well though I'm not a parent yet I think such attitude is normal for children and also it's a normal thing for a parent to get pissed off sometimes but what my mom is always even it is really hard she just enjoyed the time when we are still child 'coz when we grew up she will really miss the children in us.
have you tried offering rewards for complying rather than punishments for not? I know some ppl don't like"bribery" but I have found simple treats and reward incentives- oferring the child somehting they like rather than threatening to take away somehting they like- works better and keeps everyone happier. I am not sure how old your kids are as I only skimmed the thread.
Neither giving rewards nor punishing are effective ways of motivating a child. As soon as the "motivator" (reward/punishment goes away) the behavior reverts.
It sucks. I wish it worked. AHHHHH!!!!
I uhm... barely bathe my 4 year old. I might scrub her down with a washcloth if she looks dirty but mostly she takes a bath once a week. It's basically a play bath. She won't let me wash or brush her hair so I keep it short. She has learned that we must brush our teeth because of bugs that will eat our teeth due to the sugar we eat. If she wants to go on an all vegetable diet I'd be willing to negotiate no more teeth brushing but until then it's non-negotiable. I'm really OCD about dental hygiene. My family has a history of dental problems due to a variety of issues: poverty, lots of sugar, poor brushing habits, lack of dental insurance... etc. So my kids started getting their teeth brushed the day a tooth appeared. I'm fanatical. That is the one and only thing I have wrestled my kids down and done. The whole time I apologize over and over and keep saying, "I have to take care of your body; I'm really sorry you don't like it." In her whole life we have probably wrestled her to the floor forty-ish something times That sounds like a heinous amount. I can live with it.
My husband has learned to bribe the kids for tooth brushing though I don't. When he does bed time they get youtube videos (often Annoying Orange--sigh) only if they cooperate with tooth brushing.I simply say: "It is time to do this. No. I'm not sitting through Annoying Orange. Let's go read a book." My kids are very familiar with the idea that different people have different preferences and rules. :)
My 4.5 year old can give you a half an hour lecture on proper dental care and the problems that come from not brushing properly. She sounds hilarious. Tooth brushing is something we do because if we don't then bugs start to eat our teeth. We do a lot of playful "chasing down tooth bugs" at night with the toothbrush. It gives me great opportunity to work on my monster voices. It's fun. I remind them that we brush our teeth because we love our body and we want it to be healthy. If we don't brush we can't be healthy. Your teeth are linked to your entire body's health. And when you don't brush properly you have to experience costly, often uncomfortable or painful dental work. It sucks.
I have an implant due to poor dental care as a young person. It was ridiculously expensive and I really wish I could have spent that money in other ways. AND YET I know I am very lucky that I was able to afford a really talented dentist who managed to make referrals and all of the work was quite painless. Not everyone has enough money to spend to get that result so I'm grateful for the experience even as I wish I hadn't needed it.
So! I talk about teeth. So my kids don't fight tooth care. They are totally brainwashed. They believe they must do it for their health! It's cute. :)