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Is this too harsh of a punishment? - Page 8

post #141 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by swampangel View Post
Again, it probably depends on the child. This wouldn't work with my kids but some kids might really need to know that when mom says xyz that's what it means.

A lot of what it comes down to, IMO, is how the child is experiencing the situation. For some kids, not to have a clear message and someone in charge is a very scary, out of control kind of feeling. If your kid isn't like this, great. But let's not make blanket statements about how things work for all human beings.
:

Great point. Thanks for making it.

Also, I have three kids spaced three years apart. No way could I have gone through the fabulous 4's without 'punishment/consequence'.

Four is a much tougher age than 2. 2 was a great age for all three of my kids.

to you littleaugust baby - you are doing a SUPER job with your daughter.
post #142 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain crunchy View Post
If the child is wanting to scream and hit me, then me honoring my boundaries and not allowing them to hit and scream at me is the only "consequence" they need imo. They have seen me modeling that I will not be hit or screamed at, they have seen that screaming at me or hitting me is not something I will consent to, they see me modeling self-control and my ability to stay calm when I feel frustrated (isn't that what OP is trying to teach? self control?) while also removing myself from a situation where I am not being respected (admittedly this is easier to do in a contained place that is not a park) -- entering in arbitrary consequences doesn't do a thing to model or teach or ensure that my kid won't tantrum.....but maybe doing the above may send a message of effective and healthy conflict resolution and respectful expression of emotion.
Can I ask (not snarkily at all) for examples, here?

How do you model that you will not be hit or screamed at? How, physically, in a public park where you cannot walk away safely, can you represent that to a screaming, flailing, tantrumming, lashing-out two or three or four year old?

Because a child in that out-of-control mode is not really in a place to hear you calmly say "This is my body and its not okay to hit." And you can't leave the situation, especially if you're there alone with the child and/or have more than one child with you.

Further, how do you remove yourself from the situation, even at home, without that timeout=abandonment thing going on?

These are all questions I struggled with greatly when my DS was the OPs age. After a very calm, nearly tantrum-free baby and toddlerhood, he started pitching megafits at age 3 and they continued for over a year. Nothing we tried would prevent them in certain circumstances, and he did *not* seem to learn from discussions afterwards... "in the moment" discussions were like ashes in the wind because he was not far beyond logic during them.
post #143 of 204
I am not reading the pages of replies, but I think it is OK. However, I would tell her, "I should have not said it was a punishment. I think that there has been too much going on, and that's why we need to stay home."

In the future, (and I know this is hard), I'd do the same thing (take a break from the playgroups) but NOT tell DD why-- I would not want her to dwell on it, because it is not a punishment.
post #144 of 204
LAB, I've been in your shoes with this - a lot!

Here's what we do with our two who can both lose it.
1. The standard rule is that if you can't leave nicely, we won't come back. I work hard to ensure that they don't get to that meltdown place (see below), but if they do we don't go back next time. It's framed to them, before and calmly, that they're clearly not happy when they lose it, and it's hard on the people around them; that this is an area that is in their control and they do have control of their bodies, and that there are points when they can make the choices that will keep them from getting that upset. Then I try to be proactive as we go along and support them to understand and apply this.

2. We outline the order of the day...first this, second that...and give timelines as they seem old enough to get it.

3. We give a minimum of a 10 minute transition warning, and usually frame it as what we're doing next (we're leaving in 10 minutes, and when we get home we'll ----...ok, 5 minutes...).

4. When I see one of them starting to escalate or lose control, I connect and reflect ("hey, you're sure liking that game!" touch, touch - DS really likes firm rubbing up and down his back). If this doesn't work, I try to move them to another activity entirely.

5. If a meltdown occurs, we debrief when it's over. We talk about what maybe preceeded it, how they were feeling, and what strategies they could use next time. With DS, I really emphasize that he does have control - not blaming him, but empowering him to try to make better choices next time.
post #145 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by joensally View Post
LAB, I've been in your shoes with this - a lot!

Here's what we do with our two who can both lose it.
1. The standard rule is that if you can't leave nicely, we won't come back. I work hard to ensure that they don't get to that meltdown place (see below), but if they do we don't go back next time. It's framed to them, before and calmly, that they're clearly not happy when they lose it, and it's hard on the people around them; that this is an area that is in their control and they do have control of their bodies, and that there are points when they can make the choices that will keep them from getting that upset. Then I try to be proactive as we go along and support them to understand and apply this.

2. We outline the order of the day...first this, second that...and give timelines as they seem old enough to get it.

3. We give a minimum of a 10 minute transition warning, and usually frame it as what we're doing next (we're leaving in 10 minutes, and when we get home we'll ----...ok, 5 minutes...).

4. When I see one of them starting to escalate or lose control, I connect and reflect ("hey, you're sure liking that game!" touch, touch - DS really likes firm rubbing up and down his back). If this doesn't work, I try to move them to another activity entirely.

5. If a meltdown occurs, we debrief when it's over. We talk about what maybe preceeded it, how they were feeling, and what strategies they could use next time. With DS, I really emphasize that he does have control - not blaming him, but empowering him to try to make better choices next time.
I love this. I especially like empowering them by believing in their ability to handle the disappointment of leaving. I think this is big.

A few months ago, we were dealing with my ds's very big reactions to not being able to borrow a toy or bike of a friend's who wouldn't share them. This was hard because I actually felt a bit irked that this kiddo wouldn't share his stuff. But that's life and we really tried to help ds see that he didn't have to let someone else's choices dictate his feelings and how the rest of his day went. I think it was really empowering to him...he could choose to say "bummer. well, i'll go play on the monkey bars and have a great time!".

I'm hoping some of this same principle will apply to the transitions of leaving a fun place when it's time. This is been a big challenge. Thanks for these great tips!
post #146 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by joensally View Post
5. If a meltdown occurs, we debrief when it's over. We talk about what maybe preceeded it, how they were feeling, and what strategies they could use next time. With DS, I really emphasize that he does have control - not blaming him, but empowering him to try to make better choices next time.
joensally -- can you give some specific examples of language for your "empowering him to try to make better choices next time." More specifics would help. I think I try to do this, but I don't notice that it makes *any* difference. Some languaging might help me, personally. Thanks!
post #147 of 204
Ha, I can't believe I'm adding to this already way too long thread...

Several times the issue of consequences of a tantrum was questioned. Many feel that if you don't impose a consequence, that means there is none. I disagree. Kids don't like having tantrums. They don't feel good. I know they don't , because I've had them! Every single one of us wants to feel good. Feeling yucky is the consequence of the tantrum.
post #148 of 204
:

ITA with Mummy Marja
post #149 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by savithny View Post
Can I ask (not snarkily at all) for examples, here?

How do you model that you will not be hit or screamed at? How, physically, in a public park where you cannot walk away safely, can you represent that to a screaming, flailing, tantrumming, lashing-out two or three or four year old?

Because a child in that out-of-control mode is not really in a place to hear you calmly say "This is my body and its not okay to hit." And you can't leave the situation, especially if you're there alone with the child and/or have more than one child with you.

Further, how do you remove yourself from the situation, even at home, without that timeout=abandonment thing going on?

These are all questions I struggled with greatly when my DS was the OPs age. After a very calm, nearly tantrum-free baby and toddlerhood, he started pitching megafits at age 3 and they continued for over a year. Nothing we tried would prevent them in certain circumstances, and he did *not* seem to learn from discussions afterwards... "in the moment" discussions were like ashes in the wind because he was not far beyond logic during them.
You know I have often wondered the same thing when people say these sorts of things. The only way I seem to be able to demonstrate that I will not tolerate being hit generally means I physically walk away or restrain my dd who is 2 and at the height of tantrum mode.

I have read this thread with interest because I can see the OP's situation being mine in a few years, even now she has these tantrums where she rages but while I so desperately would love advice ( and not suggestions to read XYZ book) I feel like on this board people spout off a lot of stuff but rarely does it translate into practical hands on advice IMO.

Shay
post #150 of 204
This happened to us the other day in fact at the park -- so I have been there and I find it a tad annoying when I get condescending statements like "oh my kid was a joy at *whatever-your-kid's-age-is* ... just wait until *your-kid-is-my-kid's-age*. That way, (collective) you will always have a one up on the other person... as my kid will NEVER be your kid's age when your kid is their age... follow?

Anyway, I think the point is not that my child doesn't have tantrums, it is that I respond to them differently. Note, I didn't say "cuz I am a super mom and you suck" I said, I respond to them, differently. The way I respond gets a very effective and positive response from my dd... that is our experience.

YYMV, but for the record I will say that (imo) attempting to meet dd's needs, communicating that I am willing and wanting to work with her and am not her adversary, remembering to honor our relationship before honoring the "need to stick to things so I don't give in", remaining calm, focusing on just the two of us rather than worrying if other parents think I am doing a "good job" with her, remembering that she has been on this planet less time than the pair of underpants I am wearing has been, and also remembering that the only way to teach self control and self discipline is to show it toward her in moments she feels out of control goes so much further than losing it and punishing.

I have said it before and I will say it again... I firmly believe it: when children are out of control, they are not looking for us to control them, they are looking to us to control ourselves.

If we can't control ourselves and we are 20 some odd years older and allegedly more wiser, why in the world would we expect them to display such mature self discipline?
post #151 of 204
That is why the books get recommended. You can't sum GD up into a little posting. There are so many books and it is a complicated subject. You can't take all that advice and put it into one or two paragraphs.

It would be like saying "Give me advice for this algebra problem, but just tell me how to to solve the problem. I don't understand how the math works and I don't want to read the book"

I think that GD can be totally different from how we were raised and how society views children. It isn;t just as simple as do xyz and then abc will happen. It is really about understanding the concept as a whole, and I really think that you have to read at least a few good GD books to really start understanding and being able to figure out what to say and do in tough situations.

I tried to do GD without reading very much and I really didn't get it.
I felt like GD was about not really parenting, just go give your kid a hug no matter what they do!

After reading a lot I understand it better. And it really does work in our house. We are not permissive parents, and Owen is a great kid. The more that we work as a team, the more that I treat him the way that I would treat my DP or a good friend, the better and easier things get.

Life with a 4yo is amazing when you can remove most of the conflict. We have so much fun together, and Owen gets to do lots of fun things that would never work if he and I weren't a good team.

No one can tell you what you need to say to your kid to get them to respond. GD is about understanding a basic sense of principles for how children should be treated and what they need.
I think that you have to read some books with in depth explanations to get to that point of understanding. (it was definitely that way for me...and still is!)
post #152 of 204
oh and I just wanted to add, I think many of these *debates* could be avoided if the threads were worded a tad differently. In other words, if you just want support maybe clarify that.

"I don't know if this punishment was too harsh but it is done and I just want support 100%"

rather than "what do you think"

because you know,people are going to tell you what they think... especially when it is directly asked.
post #153 of 204
Does the child have a bike of her own?

If ds wanted to "ride the bike to the car as we were leaving the park", I would engage and connect with what he LOVED about the bike! 'You really like this bike because it is purple and has a basket?!' 'Oh, it is a big girl bike and has dangle-y things in the handle bars! Wow! That looks so fun! You'd really like to ride the bike?! Hmmm...we don't know whose bike it is. What if we get a snack from the car and then ask around to see whose bike it is? Maybe you could have a little ride on it before we go. Or do you want to stop on the way home and get some ice cream and ride your bike? Oh, do you think we could buy a basket for your bike, when we run errands on Saturday? You'd like that. Ok. I don't see whose bike it is. I don't believe they'd mind if you ride it right here back and forth a bit. Wow, that is a fun bike! Hop off and let's look at it again. Do you want to take a picture of the bike with you on it? Ok, let's do that. Well, let's go race to the car and you can ride your bike some more when we get home.' (obviously, not exactly those words, but the *intent* is to SHARE THE JOY!)

If ds's distress is just too far gone (HALT), that any talking just makes everything worse, I would SIT DOWN and offer to hold ds while he experiences his big emotions. I have sat down in the Walmart, at the store, and at the park on several different occasions, just as I do at home. I give him my undivided attention and support as he moves through the emotions with me, rather than against me. This works for us *connect*, so that he is not flailing through his emotions unanchored.

I am reminded of one of the first lessons about scuba diving, "there is nothing at the surface that you do not have right here (air tank)". This allows me to realize that *leaving* a situation isn't necessary. Just BE together, right here. That helps us work through things together, rather than ds trying to get me to stay, and me trying to leave. The energy is flowing in the same direction, when I meet him where he is.

The challenge was for me to learn to be calm in the face of his physicality, since I have a lot of childhood triggers to being hit. Just helping to block or move back from any striking out, prevents me from being hit, and helps to de-escalate ds when I offer "I want to help, what do you need?" This provides an opportunity to use language to meet needs, instead of the physicality that many young children default to when stressed and overwhelmed with their emotions. Hitting is not necessary, when we are working together.

Here is another thread that addresses how to help children with their Big Emotions. http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=723411

HTH, Pat
post #154 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by littleaugustbaby View Post
She quieted down and said ok, and then was fine after that, and has been fine all afternoon.

Did I handle this ok? WWYD? I always feel like I suck at this discipline stuff...
You know, I reread this and I think the proof is in the puddin'. Your DD reacted OK-- that means she is comfortable with the consequences. She now understands the boundaries. Maybe she did not before.

You are a single mama, so you are coming from a place I am not and I respect that very much. It sounds like what you did WORKED (and your DD was happy), and that is the bottom line. Your relationship did not suffer. She did not suffer . . .and she learned, and that is the goal of discipline.
post #155 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizelenius View Post
You know, I reread this and I think the proof is in the puddin'. Your DD reacted OK-- that means she is comfortable with the consequences. She now understands the boundaries. Maybe she did not before.

You are a single mama, so you are coming from a place I am not and I respect that very much. It sounds like what you did WORKED (and your DD was happy), and that is the bottom line. Your relationship did not suffer. She did not suffer . . .and she learned, and that is the goal of discipline.
I agree with this. Esp the part about maintaining the relationship. That's my biggest priority with my kids. When I realize I've blown it with them I always own up to it and apologize.

Another thought, sometimes discipline hurts. I just came in from a run. I hate running with a firey passion! But, as the mother of two kids, it's the fastest and most efficient way for me to get exercise, to aid in dropping a few pounds, and to be healthier for my family. Training my body to run is discipline. Running also hurts, sometimes on the outside as well as on the inside. It's not easy for me. I don't like it. But, in the long run ( ummm, pun not intended), it's good for me. Would I have rather stayed in and had another cup of coffee? You bet. But I disciplined myself to get out there and run this morning. And I'm glad I did. I guess I'm saying that even if skipping the playgroup or pizza party hurts, that doesn't mean it's an entirely bad thing.
post #156 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain crunchy View Post
This happened to us the other day in fact at the park -- so I have been there and I find it a tad annoying when I get condescending statements like "oh my kid was a joy at *whatever-your-kid's-age-is* ... just wait until *your-kid-is-my-kid's-age*. That way, (collective) you will always have a one up on the other person... as my kid will NEVER be your kid's age when your kid is their age... follow?

Anyway, I think the point is not that my child doesn't have tantrums, it is that I respond to them differently.
I am one who has pointed out age differences and it's not at all meant to one up anyone. My goodness, not at all. When my first was younger I would look at my best friend's daughter's behavior and think this doesn't have to be this way. Maybe she could try x,y or z. Well, a major humbling and growing experience came when my child entered more challenging years. That's my only point...things change. What worked at one time might not at another age. It's great to share but it's also important to recognize that other people's children are different and families are different and responses and reactions will be different. Yes, this is a GD forum and we all fall on different points along the spectrum.

I have to say that saying "respond to them differently" really does make it sound like the parent isn't responding best since the tantrum is out of control.

I have to say, my son has never had a tantrum like the OP's description. I'm guessing some of you haven't either and it's probably more likely due to the child's temperment and age rather that the parent's response. I guess it just sounds a little like blaming to me.
post #157 of 204
Quote:
'You really like this bike because it is purple and has a basket?!' 'Oh, it is a big girl bike and has dangle-y things in the handle bars! Wow! That looks so fun! You'd really like to ride the bike?! Hmmm...we don't know whose bike it is. What if we get a snack from the car and then ask around to see whose bike it is? Maybe you could have a little ride on it before we go. Or do you want to stop on the way home and get some ice cream and ride your bike? Oh, do you think we could buy a basket for your bike, when we run errands on Saturday? You'd like that. Ok. I don't see whose bike it is. I don't believe they'd mind if you ride it right here back and forth a bit. Wow, that is a fun bike! Hop off and let's look at it again. Do you want to take a picture of the bike with you on it? Ok, let's do that. Well, let's go race to the car and you can ride your bike some more when we get home.' (obviously, not exactly those words, but the *intent* is to SHARE THE JOY!
Letting a child ride another child's bike WITHOUT that child's permission is completely disrecptful and wrong IMO. Taking a picture of your child on that child's bike (again without permission) is also completly wrong IMO. I believe it is very important to teach respect for OTHER people's property.

We share bikes and scooters at the playgroud with friends all the time...but it is WITH the child's permission. I would never let my kids just go up to someone's toy and use it without the permission of that chld. Even if it is just "back and forth"..right there.

I am sure my neighbor would totally mind if I just drove his car up and down the street (right there) because I liked it and wanted to try it out. Or if I got in and had someone take a picture of me in the drivers seat. I think almost eveyrone knows that is just WRONG. IMO..it is just as wrong for a child to ride another child's bike without permission.

I would emphasize with the attributes of the bike that she liked and sympathize,I woudl try to connect, I would sit with them there and help them calm down and be with them, but I absolutely would not let them use another child's toy without permission. EVERY child deserves respect..not just your own.
post #158 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by ameliabedelia View Post
Letting a child ride another child's bike WITHOUT that child's permission is completely disrecptful and wrong IMO. Taking a picture of your child on that child's bike (again without permission) is also completly wrong IMO. I believe it is very important to teach respect for OTHER people's property.

We share bikes and scooters at the playgroud with friends all the time...but it is WITH the child's permission. I would never let my kids just go up to someone's toy and use it without the permission of that chld. Even if it is just "back and forth"..right there.

I am sure my neighbor would totally mind if I just drove his car up and down the street (right there) because I liked it and wanted to try it out. Or if I got in and had someone take a picture of me in the drivers seat. I think almost eveyrone knows that is just WRONG. IMO..it is just as wrong for a child to ride another child's bike without permission.

I would emphasize with the attributes of the bike that she liked and sympathize,I woudl try to connect, I would sit with them there and help them calm down and be with them, but I absolutely would not let them use another child's toy without permission. EVERY child deserves respect..not just your own.
ITA. I missed this part of the post. To me this sounds like trying every possible avenue to avoid a conflict. We're going to be disappointed in life...I guess I don't see the benefit in always trying to avoid conflict or "negative" feelings. I'm much more interested in my own reaction to my child's feelings than trying to manage them and make them happy all the time.
post #159 of 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by captain crunchy View Post
Anyway, I think the point is not that my child doesn't have tantrums, it is that I respond to them differently. Note, I didn't say "cuz I am a super mom and you suck" I said, I respond to them, differently. The way I respond gets a very effective and positive response from my dd... that is our experience.

I think your experiences, perspectives, and advice is extremely valuable to this forum. Strategies such as the ones you use with your dc have greatly improved my relationship with dd.

I think it is really important, however, to understand that, for whatever reason, not all children will respond to these strategies. For whatever reason, some children might need consequences some of the time. For whatever reason, sometimes these strategies just leave me vulnerable to being physically hurt by my child

I guess sometimes I feel really betrayed by this board. I have a challenging dd, and I have been reading here and applying strategies for 4 years (she is now 6). There was a time that we were "punishment/consequence" free. There was a time that I thought time-outs were cruel. And then things changed (most recently, a move that dd is having an extremely difficult time adjusting to), and regardless of how proactive I am....how attentive I am.....how understanding or willing I am to work it out....dd just wants to hurt me. She feels bad, and she wants me to feel as bad as she does.

I guess I just want people to understand that, you know, you really can do all the right things and have a different outcome. I still don't know what to do in my situation, and we are seeking professional help. But I feel like the message on the GD board can often be: this is the only gentle way, and any other way will damage your relationship.....and if it doesn't work for you, then you must be doing it wrong. It is very much like kicking someone when they are down.

Of course, this has nothing to do with the op's situation. It sound to me like their relationship is very strong and secure. A few months ago, I could have said the same about my relationship with dd :
post #160 of 204
Is there anyone here that thinks children don't need consequences?

Because I have not read that on this thread.

Punishments and consequences are not the same thing.

FWIW I have a 4 yo son who is VERY challenging and spirited. And GD works for us just fine. It isn't that I just don't understand what it is like to have a child with a challenging temperament. Heck, he just pushed our cat out a 2nd story window the other day. :

I think trying to set it up so that your child never experiences consequences is PERMISSIVE Parenting, NOT Gentle Discipline.

I think that people get the 2 confused.
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