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Disapointed with AP - Page 5

post #81 of 103
Just posting a mod note to try to keep this ontopic and civil. The tone is getting a bit tense here...thanks.
post #82 of 103
When my kids were babies, AP parenting was so much easier..they were breastfed on demand, they slept with me, their needs were met almost immediately..when they were sick, or needed comforting, they always had my arms to hold them and me to nurse them if they chose this manner of comfort.They were carried in a sling, and all was right in their worlds.

Once they became toddlers, I had to adapt my parenting to fit their behavior. Nursing for comfort became rocking for comfort or reading a book together, using a soft voice and such.. Yet there were still tantrums and demands made on me that I was at a loss how to handle. My AP parenting books and other friends who practice it were my saviors, yet the books did not have the answers all of the time..I had to find what worked for me, without compromising my belief in Gentle Discipline.

Now flash forward to two preteens, 10 and 12, and a very spirited preschooler, 4. Some days I am completely lost as to make them all content. The early solutions, nursing, rocking, reading, talking softly? Maybe they occasionally work on the 4 year old, but the older two have to have a whole new approach. I find I listen to them more, I ask them questions..if one of them is grumpy or out of sorts, I stop what I am doing and try to get them to talk to me. Sometimes this doesn't always work, and I gently remind them I am there for them when they are ready. They eventually always seem to come to me on their terms.

I do not see my kids as spoiled, I really dislike that word, it implies they are bad in some way.. but I do see them as people who have come to expect that their needs and wants will be respected. Sometimes they can be a bit demanding, and I try to remind them that patience is something everyone needs in life to get by..that their teachers, their friends, their bosses one day..their partners they choose, will all expect them to be patient and undemanding, respectful of theirs and others feelings.

I know where you are coming from, mama..and I know sometimes it is hard, but know that we are all doing the best we can as parents, and there is no "bible" of sorts that has every answer for every situation. You have to find what works for you without compromising your heart and beliefs, and above all else, listen to your child..and when in doubt, hugs do work wonders.
post #83 of 103
"I don't buy "chemical imbalance in the brain" theories. There is no test to measure chemicals in live brains, doctors just pick social unacepted behavious and then classify them as sympmoms"

I will try and be nice about this. You don't know anything about it. Bipolar is a very real disease. Obviously you don't truly know anything about it. It IS a chemical imbalance - I have it, my mother has it, her father had it. I'm not even going to go into all the details, it would take me ages. But suffice it to say I do not have socially undesirable behaviour, i Have a medical condition. When I am not on my meds I can barely function. When I am on my meds I am totally normal. You know what, forget it, I am so angry I am going to say something I regret. I have honestly never come across a ruder comment on these boards and I can't believe I am the only person offended by that ignorant and completely false comment.
post #84 of 103
Heavenly.....
post #85 of 103
Heavenly, I share many of your feelings as someone who is only alive today because of medications. I let Leonor's remarks pass the first time I read them because it isn't worth the headache.
post #86 of 103
Thread Starter 
T

I wouldn't have talked if I haven't been where you are.

Useful reads worth some thought:

http://www.szasz.com/iol5.html
http://www.szasz.com/iol3.html



post #87 of 103
Lenor - Obviously you HAVEN'T been where I am. My grandfather commit suicide because he wasn't being medicated properly. My mother had two nervous breakdowns and wasn't able to have a normal life at all until she was diagnosed and put on lithium in 1991. How can it be a behavioural problem when after 1 week on the drugs you are totally fine? Maybe someone TOLD you you were bipolar but you obviously weren't truly bipolar or you wouldn't be able to say stuff like this. You obviously don't know how it feels to wake up every day in a fog, to do and say stuff you can't remember doing, to be angry and irritable and depressed and not able to be a good and healthy person or a good mother and then take medication and within a week be a completely different person. You DON'T know. I am not angry because I feel threatened by you. I KNOW I'm right because I HAVE lived it and am still living it every day of my life. I am angry because I cannot believe someone could be so hurtful and rude when there are a whole bunch of people who suffer from this serious disease. I'm sure glad we have you to let us know we aren't really suffering from a medical condition, we are just social deviants.
post #88 of 103
Thread Starter 

This should go private I think?

*
post #89 of 103
This thread has veered totally off-topic. If it doesn't get back on-topic, I will close it. Maybe we've said all we have to in response to the OP. But I'll wait to see if anyone else has anything to add. Please let's leave discussions of mental illness, diagnosis, etc to another time/thread. Thank you.
post #90 of 103
Well getting back on topic.
Here is some good info /atricles on APing the older child that might come in handy.
http://childparenting.about.com/cs/e...tachment_3.htm

Deanna
post #91 of 103
Yeah, see my problem with AP is that it is often touted as the path to perfectly behaved children, or at least, that they will be a breeze to discipline because they are attached. "A child that feels right, acts right" I have second lilyka. It just ain't so. I read Aletha Solter's list from the link above and I do many if not all the things she listed and when they don't work, I have no other tools and wind up yelling and sometimes spanking. I just don't know what else to do. I can't tell you how much I wish that gentle discipline worked, but I can't honestly say that I believe it does.

One thing that I haven't done is try holding dd1 when she is acting obnoxiously or aggressively. I'll give it a go and see how it works. I would love to forgo the negative effects of nongentle discipline.
post #92 of 103
Agreeing with Kara.

AP is half of the have good children equation.

Starting off with unconditional love and acceptance is important but consistancy and good discipline is the other (and you cannot overlook the child's basic temperment!!!)

I am ap but I'm strict as well.

No surprise I have well behaved children.

Debra Baker
post #93 of 103
Debra, I don't suppose you can condense this into a single post, but how is it that you are "strict", what does that look like in action? I'm assuming you do not yell or spank, so what do you do?

I find that what I'm working on is changing basic attitudes and outlooks on life at this point. She is seven and a half, so misbehavior is usually being uncooperative, contrary/contradictory, rude, inconsiderate, stuff like that, mostly getting along with others kind of stuff. She seems to me to be somewhat pessimistic, so we talk a lot about "cup half full" vs. "cup half empty" and keeping a grateful journal a la Oprah. : I have been working on this kind of stuff for awhile now and it is very frustrating. She seems to leap to the negative conclusion first, rather than last, i.e. so and so stepped on her foot on purpose rather than because they stumbled into her. I do try to look to myself for some of it and try to change my attitude, tone of voice, etc., but I'm pretty laid back, optimistic, tend to give people the benefit of the doubt etc. so it's not all me. She does have a little friend at school who has a pretty foul mouth. I really don't know.

When I think about my day with her, the things I would like to change are the constant complaining, about having to get up, not liking what we to eat in the house for breakfast, for making lunch, her sister's annoying toddler behaviors, the fact that the toddler gets more attention, that she has to go to school, that there is no school today, that she has to help me, that she has to do her chores today and everyday, (those darn cats, cant' just feed 'em once and have done with it!), that she has to take shower, you get the picture. I also would like less back talk/nasty comments/rude tone of voice. Things like "Why can't you shut that baby up?" Actually, I would like none of that! :LOL And the constant back talk is driving everybody mad. It's like a nervous tic. "Boy the sky sure is blue today", "No, I see several clouds" "Ellie you need to sit still for a minute", "No, she can roll around if she wants to", "It just rained buckets!" "It was just a little rain" and so on. She is also very loud. How do you teach a child to use a quieter voice? Repeated reminding for that last five years has made only a small dent!

In her more stellar moments she is enthusiatic, cooperative, helps out without being asked, and can entertain herself with books, art supplies, small toys, and one of the biggest imaginations I have ever seen.
post #94 of 103

On the subject of labels

I do most of my posting on the Special Needs forum, but this has been rattling around in my head for a few days now, so I'm going to throw it out there in hopes that someone can benefit from it.

Someone posted previously that there seems to be a lot more child labeling on MDC that there is on other message boards. My "home" is Special Needs, and we do label there, but it isn't because of anything negative. On the contrary, it's for the purpose of creating something positive. In Special Needs, a label is used as a diagnosis, not an excuse. I think there is a lot more discussion of our children's labels here at MDC because this is a powerful place. I don't post on most mainstream special needs boards because the usual welcome to a newcomer asks what medication is being used. The mamas at MDC seek to avoid medicating their kids, and those who must have tried everything else first -- they are not blindly following a doctor's advice. And this is where the label gives power -- naming the problem provides a launching pad from which we can find ways to help our children. When my son was having problems, I struggled to find a way to help him, and I just got lost in the myriad of options. Finding out that the problem had a name (a label) gave me a direction -- I could target my search for methods that would help my child with his problem.

How does that relate here? I think the label-as-launching-pad idea has applications outside of special needs, too. Yes, labels can be used as excuses, but they can also be used as tools. A parent who labels a child as "clingy" and walks away is not helping her child. But one who identifies the problem as "clinginess" and asks the follow-up questions (Why is my child insecure? Is this a recent development? Is this actually a problem with the child or just a problem with my perception?) is in a position to help that child. And someone who is disappointed with AP really does need to "label" what AP is to them, and what parts of it are not working. And why they are not working -- AP parenting is wonderful, but it should never overshadow the importance of being that specific child's parent.

Please note that I am discussing a particular type of labeling here. I am not considering labels that are tossed around for the purpose of giving offense. If no one thinks this is valid, that's okay. It works in the Special Needs world where I live, and since it truly is a beautiful place, I'm going to head back there now.

With good intentions,

Tara
post #95 of 103
That was very helpful, thoesly, thank you! I was afraid I was going to get called on the carpet for even hinting at labeling Sophia "pessimistic", but it has helped me figure out how to help her.
post #96 of 103
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sofiamomma
"Boy the sky sure is blue today", "No, I see several clouds" "Ellie you need to sit still for a minute", "No, she can roll around if she wants to", "It just rained buckets!" "It was just a little rain" and so on.
Maybe it's the age. My oldest is 6 1/2 and he's like this too. I'm hoping it's a phase!
post #97 of 103
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sofiamomma
Yeah, see my problem with AP is that it is often touted as the path to perfectly behaved children, or at least, that they will be a breeze to discipline because they are attached. "A child that feels right, acts right" I have second lilyka. It just ain't so. I read Aletha Solter's list....and when they don't work, I....wind up yelling and sometimes spanking. I just don't know what else to do. I can't tell you how much I wish that gentle discipline worked, but I can't honestly say that I believe it does.
A couple of thoughts.

I think parenting authors such as Solter, Sears do parents a disservice if they say or imply that their methods will cause all children to be perfect angels.
Children will misbehave, they are not perfect, and they will grow up just fine and mentally healthier if they are not struck when they misbehave. I'm having a very hard time putting it into words...someone mentioned unconditional love above. It's also about making choices as parents that we can hold our heads up when we remember them, being glad we treated our children with dignity even when they were out of control, and it's also about parents healing their own wounds if they are resorting to methods they don't really believe in (spanking etc.) because they want to end the cycle with them but it's harder in reality than in theory and some authors make it sound too easy.

Being disapppointed in AP, saying it doesn't work....maybe it would be more accurate to say disappointed in the experience of parenthood itself?
AP should never be presented as a way to create perfectly behaving children.

Has anyone spent time with elders? We may be mean and cranky some day (because we have pain, or because we miss our health or independence and old friends and relatives who have died, or because we resent being treated like children at our nursing home, by staff members who talk to us in sing song preschool-teacher voices.) We may even become aggressive sometimes. But do we really want people to hit us to try to get us to behave, or leave us crying alone so that we will learn some lesson about independence?

I still don't think I'm saying this right.
post #98 of 103
Actually, I think it was beautifully said, Momtwice.
post #99 of 103
You don't need to yell or spank to be strict.

I have high standards for my children, I tell them they have high standards because they're Bakers and to whom much is given much is expected.

I am firm with my standards, I will listen to them but there are things that are givens.

I try to pick my battles so I reserve the battle of the wills for important things and the things that don't count (but many parents push) just don't show up on my radar. I don't care about their dressing (beyond very basic modesty) I don't care what they eat or what music they listen to.

The Golden Rule is key as is a good work ethic especially with their school work.


Debra Baker
post #100 of 103
momtwice I think you put it well.

i think people complain about GD or AP not working, when it doesnt' produce perfect kids. That's not the point.

I also think it has to do with expectations of what "good" kids act like, what is acceptable behaviour, etc. One person's "failure" is another's success.

I've often wondered about this term "strict" and what that means. We don't yell or spank or punish in any way, we are laid back about a lot of things, but we do have to put our foot down from time to time, and try to do this in a way that is respectful of DD's feelings, while still staying firm in our resolve. Is that "strict"? I dunno. But then I don't know any people who have no limits whatsoever, so I don't know what to compare it to.
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