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Blanket-training and alternatives (spinoff) - Page 6

post #101 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by heartmama
Respectfully, I think putting the baby back when he tries to crawl off, because you want him to learn to stay on the blanket, is the negative reinforcement. What would you call it?

Negative-expressing negation, refusal, or denail.
Reinforcement-to strengthen; support

Negative reinforcement as it relates to behavior doesn't have to mean hitting or yelling. It means to reinforce a desired behavior by actively denying the alternatives. That is what happens when the baby crawls off the blanket and finds himself right back on it. He frowns, tries again, finds himself back on it. Eventually he accepts the desired goal of staying put, because the alternative was denied. Negative reinforcement.

A postive reinforcment uses "a display of affirmation" to reinforce the desired behavior. When he crawls on the blanket, he gets a postive affirmation which then reinforces the behavior as desirable. The baby chooses to go back to the blanket because he associates it with a positive experience.
Okay, by this standard it is negative reinforcement. I was meaning negative reinforcement as punishment, which it isn't. Of course by this standard *any* thwarting of baby's will is negative reinforcement, whether it's blanket-training or taking away something he wants to put in his mouth or holding him back from running in the street.
post #102 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by heartmama
I agree they did not understand what you were asking. When they crawled away they only knew they wanted to crawl away. I am saying, it wasn't necessary to stop them in order to communicate the blanket as desirable, especially if your children are this mellow. You could work cooperatively, or you could use positive reinforcement. I think you just need to tweek your view of the crawling away, so that you don't see it as something you have a right to stop. In that moment there was no immediate danger and it was valid for the baby to crawl away. I would really encourage you to think about that.
There was no immediate danger, but I was trying to teach the meaning of "please stay on the blanket" so that they would understand it in the future. If I had waited until there was immediate danger I would have made the request and baby wouldn't have known what it meant. By putting them back on the blanket, I wasn't punishing them for crawling away, but showing them tangibly what I wanted them to do. And I did try to make it fun for them. Maybe this wasn't clear, but the blanket was not just used for blanket-training; it was where the babies played. So I think they did view it as fun and desirable, as evidenced by the fact that they didn't want to be picked up, but I was just teaching them the boundaries of where I wanted them to be.

Quote:
I feel like sighing a bit here, because honestly I wonder if you really, really think it is this simple? Have you ever seen a battered wife go back to her husband? I am *not* comparing you to that, I am making a point about conditioning and free will. Free will doesn't explain any number of predictable patterns of behavior every one of us possesses. It is so much more complicated than looking at a person and saying "If they don't like this, they can risk the alternative, they have free will". It negates a whole other set of human conditions that are ever present~the need for approval, the fear of abandonment, etc.
I feel like sighing too, but actually I do think it's that simple. As I posted before I am very skeptical of mainstream psychology and its attempt to "explain" why people do things. The other things you mentioned--need for approval, fear of ababdonment--factor into our decision-making, but in the end we still have free will. Many, many people choose not to live in the confines of those predictable behavior patterns. Many, many people choose to use their God-given minds to make logical choices that are separate from their instincts.

Quote:
I am actually curious as to your aversion to things that represent a cage. I am not asking you to share your reasons. But it does make me wonder if something in your own past has persisted into your present. It certainly is true for me, that I can trace back some of my strongest aversions to aspects of my childhood that still influence me.
Yes, it's based on my past experiences, but not from childhood. I actually don't mind sharing the reasons, but not on this public forum.
post #103 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bri276
ITA with this. I cannot imagine the use of this, even if my baby hated the excersaucer, if I had to put her in it for 10 minutes to do something dangerous, ie use a sharp knife or hot stove, it would not be discouraging her from normal development or punishing her for normal baby behavior, which is what the baby WILL perceive if you are consistently stopping them from moving off the blanket. anyone who doesn't get that really, really needs to think about taking a infant development course.
How is putting her in an exersaucer not discouraging her from normal development? She isn't getting to roam free in the exersaucer any more than she's getting to roam free on the blanket.
post #104 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brigianna
That is just sick. What is it with these people and their child torture fetishes? How old is this baby supposed to be? Because I don't see how that could not cause serious injury.
The baby who Gothard and others talk about hitting with a wooden spoon to blanket train is crawling but not yet walking- so between 6 and 12 months- yes it is sick- and it is why the term blanket training makes me bristle.- I've seen the sad defeated look in the eyes of children who are trained this way.
As far as what you are talking about- it's my opinion that you'll find a wide continuum of parents on the gentle discipline board- those who will see any boundry setting as coersion- like TCS- all the way to those who enforce boundries with consequences. It seems to me that teaching a baby to stay on a blanket the way you described is within that continuum- just barely if you get me- as for me I'm much more on a middle ground- so I would (and do) try to find a solution that kept baby safe, but was more likely to keep baby a part of my every day living (a la continuum concept). I do not see much difference in conditioning a child to stay on a blanket from getting a child used to any other "containment device" like an exersaucer or a playpen. For my daughter with SID- none of these things were helpful to her- her little brother got used to them quickly- for a 10 minute shower or his sister's therapy session. My last little free spirit will not be contained so we don't use them.
Just my 2 cents- but I don't thinks its awful or anti-AP, but I do think that you need to call it something else and that there are more "attached" options.
Dana
post #105 of 192
brigianna, can you describe a situation where you would need your child to stay on a blanket?

i'm afraid i'm not quite understanding the purpose if your house is all babyproofed and safe and everything...

i am pretty sure i've read the whole thread, but if i missed where you already said this, i am really sorry. thanks.
post #106 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brigianna
Those are physical restraints--what I'm trying to avoid. Blanket-training isn't like putting an electrical collar on a dog to keep him in the yard, it's more like *showing* the dog the boundaries of the yard and teaching him to stay within them so he doesn't need a fence or electrical collar.
It's still confinement. It's still physical restraint. It's just doing so without a tangible tether or barrier (though in your case, the blanket is a physical symbol of the barrier). It's so weird to me that you don't see that.
post #107 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brigianna
Okay, by this standard it is negative reinforcement. I was meaning negative reinforcement as punishment, which it isn't.
I respectfully disagree. It may not be intended as punishment, but it is likely perceived as punishment. You are exerting your will and imposing a consequence for behavior (baby chooses to leave blanket, the consequence - i.e., punishment - is being returned to the blanket).
post #108 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brigianna
How is putting her in an exersaucer not discouraging her from normal development? She isn't getting to roam free in the exersaucer any more than she's getting to roam free on the blanket.
for the record, I was giving a "for instance" in fact, my baby doesn't mind being in the excersaucer for short times.

the difference is that the baby is thinking "aw crap, mom put me in this restrictive, uncomfortable thing I don't like again! I can't wait to get out and get back on the floor where I can move around freely or to be picked up where I'm held and can see what the other people are doing better! oh, here's mom, that wasn't so long...."
whereas on the blanket, baby is thinking
"huh. I'm learning to move my arms and legs and crawl! this is great! this is...wait, why did mom pick me up and move me back where I was? let me try that again! wait, she put me back again! why doesn't she want me to crawl?"

THAT is the difference. being restrained temporarily in safety device=irritating, frustrating-but (should be) temporary and transient between being held/free play time. being actively discouraged from learning how to crawl and move= confusing, perceived as punishment. you have to always look at it from baby's POV.
post #109 of 192
Is the blanket merely symbolic? Did you find with your children you could have used masking tape to stick down on the floor to form a box and say, "Stay inside the lines?" I can appreciate the trust aspect, but I'm concerned with the expectations of compliance.
post #110 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Madre Piadosa
The baby who Gothard and others talk about hitting with a wooden spoon to blanket train is crawling but not yet walking- so between 6 and 12 months- yes it is sick- and it is why the term blanket training makes me bristle.- I've seen the sad defeated look in the eyes of children who are trained this way.
I don't see how hitting a 6-12 month old baby with a *wooden freakin' spoon* could not cause severe injury. I mean that would be like hitting an adult with a club or a piece of furnature or something. What is *wrong* with these people?

Quote:
As far as what you are talking about- it's my opinion that you'll find a wide continuum of parents on the gentle discipline board- those who will see any boundry setting as coersion- like TCS- all the way to those who enforce boundries with consequences. It seems to me that teaching a baby to stay on a blanket the way you described is within that continuum- just barely if you get me- as for me I'm much more on a middle ground- so I would (and do) try to find a solution that kept baby safe, but was more likely to keep baby a part of my every day living (a la continuum concept). I do not see much difference in conditioning a child to stay on a blanket from getting a child used to any other "containment device" like an exersaucer or a playpen. For my daughter with SID- none of these things were helpful to her- her little brother got used to them quickly- for a 10 minute shower or his sister's therapy session. My last little free spirit will not be contained so we don't use them.
Just my 2 cents- but I don't thinks its awful or anti-AP, but I do think that you need to call it something else and that there are more "attached" options.
Dana
I understand about the continuum, and I am actually much more on the non-coercive side (not tcs though), but not for babies. I don't think it's really possible to be non-coercive with babies. And I do think there's a significant difference between blanket-training and containment devices, but I don't know that I could explain it any better than I've already tried to do...

Blanket-training was recommended to me by a couple of people who called it "blanket-training." I didn't know until I read it here that it was used by the child-torture fetishists (the people who recommended it to me were not). I'm pretty sure blanket-training has been around for centuries before these people co-opted it. I was blanket-trained and, while my parents weren't quite ap/gd, they didn't beat or torture me.
post #111 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by delicious
brigianna, can you describe a situation where you would need your child to stay on a blanket?

i'm afraid i'm not quite understanding the purpose if your house is all babyproofed and safe and everything...

i am pretty sure i've read the whole thread, but if i missed where you already said this, i am really sorry. thanks.
If I were in the room with baby, baby was playing on the blanket on the floor, and I needed to leave the room for a brief minute, like to answer the phone or go to the bathroom, I told baby "please stay on the blanket." I never left them alone for more than a few minutes. I don't think they were in that much danger even if they "forgot" their training and left the blanket, which didn't happen. But they were safer on the blanket than roaming free. And when they were a bit older, maybe over 1, I would ask them to stay on the blanket briefly to keep them occupied while I was there in the room, but again, never for very long.
post #112 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonfly
It's still confinement. It's still physical restraint. It's just doing so without a tangible tether or barrier (though in your case, the blanket is a physical symbol of the barrier). It's so weird to me that you don't see that.
Yes, it is confinement, but it isn't captivity or physical restraints. To me there is a big difference. In the adult world, we as a society accept restraints that don't involve captivity all the time, like in the example I gave earlier of an office waiting room where you're told to "wait right here." There's no fence or pen making you wait there; you comply because you're asked and it's expected of you. You also trust that you aren't being held captive. In the adult world, most people only support physical captivity for people who are so dangerous to society that the rest of us need to be protected from them, or people who have done something so bad that most people think they need to be punished to set an example for others not to do the same thing, or in some cases where mainstream society thinks it knows what's best for us. So if you think about an office waiting room vs. a prison, it's true that they both have the effect of people being asked to stay in a particular place, but I certainly hope you see that there's still a big difference.

And no, I'm not saying that those of y'all who use pens and gates responsibly and not excessively are jailing your kids; it's just an analogy.

Quote:
I respectfully disagree. It may not be intended as punishment, but it is likely perceived as punishment. You are exerting your will and imposing a consequence for behavior (baby chooses to leave blanket, the consequence - i.e., punishment - is being returned to the blanket).
It's possible; I can't read my kids' minds, but I think if they thought they were being punished they would cry, fuss, and throw a fit. I also think they perceive a containment device as punishment. Maybe your kids would think of being put on a blanket as punishment but not being put in a pen; I don't know. But I don't think my kids felt punished by blanket-training.
post #113 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brigianna
If I were in the room with baby, baby was playing on the blanket on the floor, and I needed to leave the room for a brief minute, like to answer the phone or go to the bathroom, I told baby "please stay on the blanket." I never left them alone for more than a few minutes. I don't think they were in that much danger even if they "forgot" their training and left the blanket, which didn't happen. But they were safer on the blanket than roaming free. And when they were a bit older, maybe over 1, I would ask them to stay on the blanket briefly to keep them occupied while I was there in the room, but again, never for very long.
well. i guess that's where i differ from you. i see absolutely no need to do that with my kids, and never have. i've never used a playpen or anything, either. i have no problem running to grab the phone or pee or something while they play. 9 times out of 10, though, when they were crawing babies, they'd follow me, if not ask me to pick them up.

anyways, thanks for responding to my post.
post #114 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bri276
for the record, I was giving a "for instance" in fact, my baby doesn't mind being in the excersaucer for short times.

the difference is that the baby is thinking "aw crap, mom put me in this restrictive, uncomfortable thing I don't like again! I can't wait to get out and get back on the floor where I can move around freely or to be picked up where I'm held and can see what the other people are doing better! oh, here's mom, that wasn't so long...."
whereas on the blanket, baby is thinking
"huh. I'm learning to move my arms and legs and crawl! this is great! this is...wait, why did mom pick me up and move me back where I was? let me try that again! wait, she put me back again! why doesn't she want me to crawl?"

THAT is the difference. being restrained temporarily in safety device=irritating, frustrating-but (should be) temporary and transient between being held/free play time. being actively discouraged from learning how to crawl and move= confusing, perceived as punishment. you have to always look at it from baby's POV.
I don't think so, at least for my kids. I think when I put them back on the blanket they were confused, but after a few attempts figured out, "oh, okay, mama wants me to stay on the blanket. I can do that." I think with a saucer the thinking would be "why can't I get out of this thing? I can't move. Will I ever be free again?" That would be *my* thinking, and I'm considerably older than a baby. Now maybe your baby doesn't feel that way--I don't doubt that there are many babies who don't mind these devices, but mine aren't among them.
post #115 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by georgia
Is the blanket merely symbolic? Did you find with your children you could have used masking tape to stick down on the floor to form a box and say, "Stay inside the lines?" I can appreciate the trust aspect, but I'm concerned with the expectations of compliance.
Yes, it's exactly the same as using masking tape or chalk or ribbon or any of the other things people use to draw lines and ask people to stay in a specific place. I think that *most* people use some variation of asking kids to "stay right here" or "don't go anywhere" or "don't get into trouble," but I think these are too abstract for toddlers to understand. What does "stay right here" mean--where is "here"? Whereas with the blanket (or tape, etc) there is a visible concrete boundary that you're asking him not to cross, which is much easier to understand.
post #116 of 192
Quote:
In the adult world, we as a society accept restraints that don't involve captivity all the time, like in the example I gave earlier of an office waiting room where you're told to "wait right here." There's no fence or pen making you wait there; you comply because you're asked and it's expected of you.
Totally different imo. The difference being that if I decided I didn't feel like waiting or didn't have time or whatever...no one would come out and drag me back into the waiting room repeatedly until I realized trying to leave was futile and stayed because I knew if I tried to leave, I would be brought back again.

I mean, hey, your baby *may* have been thinking, mama wants me to stay here so I will --- but how do you know they weren't thinking.... geez, every time I attempt to communicate with my mother that I want off this thing (by crawling away) she puts me back, so what's the point?

I mean, babies eventually stop crying and fall asleep when they are forced to cry it out, are they thinking "gee, I guess my mom wants me to stay here and fall asleep so I will" or do you think they are thinking "no one is coming, im exhausted, why try anymore"...

I am guessing the latter.
post #117 of 192
Quote:
think that *most* people use some variation of asking kids to "stay right here" or "don't go anywhere" or "don't get into trouble," but I think these are too abstract for toddlers to understand.
Yes, we are in agreement that these examples are all too abstract to understand. It's just that I've never expected my children to "stay right here" or "not to go anywhere"...the "burden" of compliance would be upon them, whereas the the responsibility for their well-being and safety should be on me. Not on a blanket or a chalk line.

post #118 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brigianna
Yes, it is confinement, but it isn't captivity or physical restraints. To me there is a big difference. In the adult world, we as a society accept restraints that don't involve captivity all the time, like in the example I gave earlier of an office waiting room where you're told to "wait right here." There's no fence or pen making you wait there; you comply because you're asked and it's expected of you.
You comply because you have a reason to. You're waiting for the doctor and you need to be present when your name is called or you'll miss the appointment. You choose to wait because it is a necessity in fulfilling your need to see the doctor. A child waiting on a blanket is acting contrary to his/her desire (to get off of the blanket) and for the arbitrary reason that mama has made it a rule.

Quote:
It's possible; I can't read my kids' minds, but I think if they thought they were being punished they would cry, fuss, and throw a fit. I also think they perceive a containment device as punishment. Maybe your kids would think of being put on a blanket as punishment but not being put in a pen; I don't know. But I don't think my kids felt punished by blanket-training.
I never actually put ds in a pen or behind gates, so I don't know. I also didn't ask him to stay put because I knew he wasn't ready for it. It's in his nature to want to be where I am (a fact I've relied on to keep him safe) and, when he was so young, not within his ability to heed those sorts of commands. Now, at 5, he can stay put if I really need him to (though such situations are rare because he's learning more about keeping himself safe all the time). It's now age appropriate to ask such a thing for a short time. I just can't agree that it's at all age appropriate to ask the same of a baby.
post #119 of 192
Quote:
I do think there's a significant difference between blanket-training and containment devices, but I don't know that I could explain it any better than I've already tried to do...
You've been very articulate and open about how this works in your family and I for one appreciate that.
While I completely UNDERSTAND your point of view- I disagree with it. In my opinion there is no difference between the blanket and any other containment device. (which btw I feel have their place- but not for the free spirit I'm raising now.) Many children have to be "trained" to stay in those devices "happily" too- they also may attempt to get out- or fuss and whine to communicate their desire to be out, then mamas sooth them and "train" them that these devices are an ok place to be. In the end both things are accomplishing the same thing... so although I understand what you are trying to say- we'll have to agree to disagree on whether staying on a blanket or in any device is the same thing.
I think that in this regard you may have been blessed with easier babies then most. I've never tried to teach my children to stay on a blanket- but I have tried exersaucers and the like. 1 took to it, 1 couldn't handle it due to her disability and the other- like I said he really is such a free spirit. So my hypothetical for you would be what if the infant did protest, cry and scream every time you put them back on the blanket?
Thank you for putting so much time and thoughts into your posts- I hope you aren't feeling attacked- it is a different parenting technique- I had never heard of it till people at my church started using Ezzo and Gothard (and being an in home interventionist- I was exposed to many many parenting techniques.)
Dana
post #120 of 192
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain crunchy
Totally different imo. The difference being that if I decided I didn't feel like waiting or didn't have time or whatever...no one would come out and drag me back into the waiting room repeatedly until I realized trying to leave was futile and stayed because I knew if I tried to leave, I would be brought back again.
Okay, it's an imperfect analogy. But I think if you crossed the line labeled "authorized personnel only beyond this point" someone would be there saying, "excuse me, but you have to be authorized to be in here" or some such. My point was that almost all of us willingly accept symbolic restraints in our adult lives because we're asked to and it's expected of us. But most people, in their adult lives, at least in a free society, will never experience the misery and agony of physical captivity.

Quote:
I mean, hey, your baby *may* have been thinking, mama wants me to stay here so I will --- but how do you know they weren't thinking.... geez, every time I attempt to communicate with my mother that I want off this thing (by crawling away) she puts me back, so what's the point?
Because I think if they had been thinking that, they would have cried or fussed or most likely thrown a tantrum. It's possible that they accepted it with quiet resignation, but they accepted very few indignities with quiet resignation.

Quote:
I mean, babies eventually stop crying and fall asleep when they are forced to cry it out, are they thinking "gee, I guess my mom wants me to stay here and fall asleep so I will" or do you think they are thinking "no one is coming, im exhausted, why try anymore"...

I am guessing the latter.
I don't doubt you're right about ferberized babies, but my babies weren't crying when I was blanket-training them.
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