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Grr... your punishment just crushed MY kid! - Page 3

post #41 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by TortelliniMama View Post
So, it was thoughtful of the mom to not disappoint the OP, but it's okay that she disappointed the OP's son? I'm really surprised at how unimportant the OP's ds is seen in this scenario. For a child, this is equivalent to his best man not showing up at his wedding.
I'm going to give the mother the benefit of the doubt and say although she should have called the night before maybe in her household things were pretty stressful and she was just doing the best she could.

I'm sure she wasn't intending to disappoint the OP's son. Why is everyone making it out to be so malicious? Geez, I think she had her hands full. She did show up to help still, as promised.
post #42 of 195
I think this istotally reasonable and would have given the same consequence to my kids. I agree with the PP who said the child should have had to call your child Friday night and expain why he wouldn't be there.
post #43 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by warriorprincess View Post
I think this istotally reasonable and would have given the same consequence to my kids. I agree with the PP who said the child should have had to call your child Friday night and expain why he wouldn't be there.
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post #44 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by savithny View Post
Natural consequences sometimes affect others - and that is the natural consequence!!!
Yes, natural consequences do sometimes affect others. However, I think it helps to clarify what we mean by "a natural consequence"... in this case it would be that he fell down running and got hurt, or hid and missed dinner...something that happens if no one interferes. Anything the parent has to come up with is not a natural consequence. It may make sense in the context of what happened, but an imposed consequence is not a natural consequence.

I can understand not wanting to take a runner to a birthday party, I do! I avoided playgrounds as much as possible all last summer because I just didn't want to spend all day chasing my son. BUT to frame it in the context of "you lose your privileges!" takes it out of that arena and throws it in the punishment

Lost my train of thought, kitchen situation...
Ugh. For instance. My son was just in the sugar. And the rice. The natural consequence is that he is covered in sugar. The logical consequence would be that I have him help me clean it up. Punishment would be a spanking or a time out, or not being allowed to go to a birthday party.
post #45 of 195
Thread Starter 
OK, I've calmed down a bit and am no longer threatening to nominate them for worst parents of the year. They did royally screw up by not informing us ahead of time. And I like the idea of him calling my ds to tell him why.

I also don't feel out of line soliciting suggestions for them because they are friends of ours and the mom said to me "what else can we do?" They're open to suggestions. I don't think their son needs more freedom - he could go over to his friends' house if he let them know, and they'll even let him walk around the block by himself, IF they know where he is. The problem was that he took off without them knowing, and then wouldn't come back when they did find him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrsfatty View Post
I'm so confused!

To me (newbie):
punishment would have been something like no phone for a week or no tv for a week or no new toys for x amount of time (loss of privilege unrelated to the "crime")
natural consequences would be no going out of the house if he is not trustworthy to stay with mom and dad (which unfortunately, means no attending friends' birthday parties)

No, see, that's a LOGICAL consequence. The 'natural consequence' of running off is that you might get lost and that your parents get really worried. Natural consequences are different from logical consequences. So, if my dd goes out without shoes on (happens a lot), her tights get wet if it's rainy. She HATES wet tights. But I didn't intervene to do this.
I see what ds' friend's parents did as punishment because it was loss of a privilege unrelated to his crime. Not going to a birthday party has zilch to do with running away from mom and dad.

Quote:
gentle discipline would be explaining how the behavior affects you, trying to problem solve together a system that works for both the child and parent (cooperation), give a choice, etc.
Well, in my book it can also involve natural/logical consequences. I got tired of telling dd to put her shoes on, so I quit. Her tights got wet. She got frustrated. She started wearing shoes!

I also do logical consequences - my kids are fighting over a box. Problem solving is getting no where. (Refuse to take turns, refuse to try another game with the same box, have no ideas of their own other than to stand there and scream at brother/sister to get out of "their" box.) Box goes in garage until everyone has calmed down and mom can stand it again. My removing the box isn't necessarily punishment, but it's only tangentially related to the real problem.

But I still don't get what good grounding does. Really. I don't.
post #46 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrsfatty View Post
I'm so confused!

To me (newbie):
punishment would have been something like no phone for a week or no tv for a week or no new toys for x amount of time (loss of privilege unrelated to the "crime")
natural consequences would be no going out of the house if he is not trustworthy to stay with mom and dad (which unfortunately, means no attending friends' birthday parties)
gentle discipline would be explaining how the behavior affects you, trying to problem solve together a system that works for both the child and parent (cooperation), give a choice, etc.

Why is this punishment?
Hiya!
Natural consequences is something that happens *naturally* as a result of the actions. If a child throws his toy, it breaks, and that is the natural consequence. It is what happens IF YOU DO NOT INTERVENE.
Logical consequences are something that the parent comes up with that is related to the "wrongdoing" in a way that makes sense. (For breaking a favorite vase, losing television privileges would not be a logical consequence.) Logical consequences can be a punishment to make the child "regret that he did it", or it can be a way of helping a truly remorseful child make amends.
Gentle discipline is first and foremost parenting without smacking, spanking, or hitting. And it is what you mentioned as well - explaining, talking, cooperation, problem solving.
Punishment is any pain, suffering, or loss inflicted on a person because of a crime or offense. The goal of punishment is generally to get the child to feel bad, and the "worse" the offense, the more the child is supposed to suffer.

What the mother imposed was a punishment, and possibly a logical consequence, and it seems like it was gentle discipline. Does this make sense?
post #47 of 195
A natural consequence is something that happens naturally - the parent doesn't have to do anything. It just happens.

If the parent creates a consequence, such as not allowing a child to go somewhere because he/she feels the child isn't trustworthy, that is a punishment. A consequence the parent makes happen in an effort to punish a child is a punishment. So "logical consequences" are a kind of punishment. People use that word often for more gentle punishments that are logically related to whatever the child is being punished for. Child makes mess and parent makes child clean up mess before doing anything else = logical consequence. Child makes mess and parent takes away new toy = non-logical consequence.

Gentle discipline is defined by different people in different ways, but for me it means discipline that is not physical and does not involve shame or humiliation. I don't personally punish but IMO there are many kinds of punishments that are gentle discipline techniques.
post #48 of 195
Okay,
So no one has mentioned (maybe they did and I missed it) that "Natural Consequences" in this situation could involve getting kidnapped or hit by a car.

Why is it So awful to have parent imposed consequences in situations like this?

A PP mentioned letting a child learn the natural consequences of not wearing shoes by letting dd go shoeless and learn that her tights will get wet. That is teaching through natural consequences.

I don't really see how, in the OP's situation, you teach through natural consequences. You can't just say "Okay, take off on your own. You will learn once you get hit by a car"...yk?

I think that there are times for parent imposed consequences.
And this was one of those times. Maybe she could have chosen a better consequence, but I really don't understand how this child can safely learn through completely "natural consequences" in this situation.

Should there have just not been a consequence?

And how would putting locks on the doors be a "natural consequence" (by definition) but keeping him home from a party is not?
Both of those things seem parent imposed to me. Neither of those things just happens on their own.

I am getting really confused on this thread and I am VERY into GD.

I really feel like some of the responses here are coming from the more wishy washy side of GD...I am sorry but I don't have a nicer way to put that. I am not trying to hurt anyone's feelings.

This thread just has me a little :
post #49 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by chfriend View Post
We don't do punishments...

Also, I don't think of celebrating with friends as a privilege. I think of it as one of life's great joys. I always find that construction the privilege of "....." a little odd.
Me too! As if children have no rights, only "privileges". :

I think stopping him from going to his friend's birthday party was an extremely harsh punishment. To call it a "consequence" doesn't change anything. The parents understood that this birthday party was a thing that they could really hurt him by taking from him. The fact that his mother went without him makes it even worse, I think.
post #50 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by dubfam View Post
Should there have just not been a consequence?

And how would putting locks on the doors be a "natural consequence" (by definition) but keeping him home from a party is not?
I don't think a punishment is called for in this situation at all. The consequence of what happened was that the parents got upset, and they should of course tell him that.

The difference between putting locks on the doors and keeping him home from the party is that putting locks on the doors will actually prevent him from running out on his own again, while keeping him home from the party is done only to hurt him and thereby scare him from disobeying again: "This is what happens when you don't do as we say."

Although I don't think putting locks on the doors is a "natural" consequence, rather a "logical" one. While keeping him home from the party is just punishment.
post #51 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbitmum View Post
I don't think a punishment is called for in this situation at all. The consequence of what happened was that the parents got upset, and they should of course tell him that.

The difference between putting locks on the doors and keeping him home from the party is that putting locks on the doors will actually prevent him from running out on his own again, while keeping him home from the party is done only to hurt him and thereby scare him from disobeying again: "This is what happens when you don't do as we say."
It will also prevent him from escaping a fire, or getting out in an emergency. In many states this is illegal.
post #52 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbitmum View Post

The difference between putting locks on the doors and keeping him home from the party is that putting locks on the doors will actually prevent him from running out on his own again, while keeping him home from the party is done only to hurt him and thereby scare him from disobeying again: "This is what happens when you don't do as we say."
But I am really still failing to see the difference. I think putting locks on the doors is worse...

The way that you describe it keeping him home from the party will help/make him decide not to run away again.
Putting locks on the door just takes away his opportunity to make a better choice in the future. This does not sound like GD to me.
post #53 of 195
I guess it's really a matter of feelings...

if the same thing happened to us, as the OP's friend it would be as follows..

Child runs and hides from mom....disappears and runs away for a long period of time...
natural consequence: Mom doesn't feel safe letting child out of arm's reach thus, doesn't take child into situations where she doesn't feel she can keep him in arms reach constantly.


or our situation

Child runs and hides from mom, laughing while doing so...
natural consequence: Mom doesn't feel up to taking child back to the same place because she lacks the energy and desire to chase child again....resulting in an imposed consequence of declining the next invitation.

I think a lot of times the difference between a natural and logical consequence is the motive behind it. It's my job as a mom to not take my child into dangerous situations. If my child is a child that chooses to run and hide from me, it's unsafe to take him somewhere that I can't constantly be close enough to grab him. This would be a natural consequence of running from mom. However, if I was just ticked off about it and used this reason to not take him to the party...then it would be an imposed consequence.
post #54 of 195
*I* feel that was harsh for a 6 year old. Appropriate for a 10 year old, though. The kid wasn't shamed or beaten, so I wouldn't be overly upset, even though I think it was harsh. You should have been given a heads up so your child could have been warned and not as disappointed.
post #55 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by dubfam View Post
I am getting really confused on this thread and I am VERY into GD.

I really feel like some of the responses here are coming from the more wishy washy side of GD...I am sorry but I don't have a nicer way to put that. I am not trying to hurt anyone's feelings.

This thread just has me a little :
FWIW I wasn't advocating for natural consequences in this situation. I simply said they're what happens if no one intervenes - and yes, sometimes the consequences are too great and the parent intervenes to protect the child from harm. There was some confusion as to what natural consequences are.
(Locks on the doors aren't a natural consequence. They may not even be a punishment; depends on how it's handled. For instance, I put my vitamins up high, not as a punishment but for safety. I personally like having a bell on the door handle that lets me know if my kids are leaving.)

But on a personal note, not just definitions, I don't think it was an appropriate punishment. I don't make my children suffer when they make mistakes or behave in ways that I don't want. If that's wishy washy then... oh well.

I don't do consequences. My kids don't lose privileges, don't get time outs or grounded. I don't let them step off bridges to learn a lesson. And they certainly aren't forced to let down other people to learn a lesson about something unrelated. Now, if we went to a birthday party and my child threw the cake at the other children, well, then I'd think twice about the next birthday party, and you better bet we'd be having a lot of discussions.

I'm not saying I don't get mad or frustrated. I do. But I am saying that making my kid suffer isn't my first answer to the problem. I've never ever had a situation where it was the only or best solution. Most of the time, it's not even PART of the solution.

Maybe the problem is that I'm not fully into "GD" anymore to me that sounds like finding nice ways to coerce your kid. Better than hitting them, sure. But not where I'm at now... I'm a gentle parent, but not "Here's the right way to do a time out so your kid learns not to question your authority"...
which I guess looks wishy washy. My 5yo daughter did go farther than I wanted, to someplace I asked her not to go. I was scared to DEATH. It never occurred to me to tell her she couldn't go to a party, or that she had to clean the toilets or peel potatoes, or that she should be whacked. I let her know I was scared, talked to her, reiterated the boundaries and the reasons for them, more talks about safety, I made sure she got to go to the playground that is less than a block from our apt, and in general kept a better eye on her, since now I know her "territory" is increasing. No one needed to be punished for the situation to resolve, kwim?
post #56 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post
I see what ds' friend's parents did as punishment because it was loss of a privilege unrelated to his crime. Not going to a birthday party has zilch to do with running away from mom and dad.
ITA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post
Well, in my book it can also involve natural/logical consequences. I got tired of telling dd to put her shoes on, so I quit. Her tights got wet. She got frustrated. She started wearing shoes!



Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post
But I still don't get what good grounding does. Really. I don't.
Nope, it doesn't. I think we need to keep in mind that even if a consequence is perfectly logical to us as adults, it may make no sense to a child. If it doesn't make sense, to him/her, it is in actuality a punishment in the guise of a consequence, and therefore, pretty useless. At 6, the brain does not process abstract concepts the same way an adult's brain does.
post #57 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by dubfam View Post
But I am really still failing to see the difference. I think putting locks on the doors is worse...
Well, I didn't mean that putting locks on the doors was to be used as some sort of punishment, like if the parents said "Since you are such a bad boy we will put LOCKS ON THE DOORS to keep you locked up!" It might just be a thing one could choose to do for safety (or not, if it's illegal in some states as was mentioned above). Excactly the same way that I sometimes lock the door with the extra security lock to prevent my two-year-old from running out into the road. Nothing to do with discipline at all.

I don't even know whether putting locks on the doors would be necessary or the right thing for the family in question, I just meant that by definition locking the doors has a logical connection with children going out without leave, whereas stopping them from going to a party is completely unconnected.

I think they should just explain to him why he shouldn't run off like that. :
post #58 of 195
I think that, birthday party or not, "no going out of the house right now" was a good solution for the OP, because it keeps her child temporarily safe.

For me, gentle discipline includes parenting that says " I see that you really don't see what bad thing could come out of this right now, so for the time being I will make the decision that we won't do it" Because, see, I hold safety issues in a whole 'nother category. If it involves someone potentially getting hurt, I get involved.

Knowing your child means being a step ahead of them sometimes. And it means protecting them from some things they aren't yet able to understand, because YOU DO know better.
post #59 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by Collinsky View Post
I don't do consequences. My kids don't lose privileges, don't get time outs or grounded. I don't let them step off bridges to learn a lesson. And they certainly aren't forced to let down other people to learn a lesson about something unrelated. Now, if we went to a birthday party and my child threw the cake at the other children, well, then I'd think twice about the next birthday party, and you better bet we'd be having a lot of discussions.

I'm not saying I don't get mad or frustrated. I do. But I am saying that making my kid suffer isn't my first answer to the problem. I've never ever had a situation where it was the only or best solution. Most of the time, it's not even PART of the solution.

My 5yo daughter did go farther than I wanted, to someplace I asked her not to go. I was scared to DEATH. It never occurred to me to tell her she couldn't go to a party, or that she had to clean the toilets or peel potatoes, or that she should be whacked. I let her know I was scared, talked to her, reiterated the boundaries and the reasons for them, more talks about safety, I made sure she got to go to the playground that is less than a block from our apt, and in general kept a better eye on her, since now I know her "territory" is increasing. No one needed to be punished for the situation to resolve, kwim?
:

I think there are other solutions/ways of handling this kind of thing besides letting a child experience potentially very dangerous natural consequences, punishing, or doing nothing. There's a lot to be said for communication (about feelings, about danger, about what can happen, about how others might feel), problem solving (together), and supervision. It is possible to not be wishy-washy and still not punish. I don't think punishment is an effective teaching tool.
post #60 of 195
I think mom should have called and told you that her child would not be allowed to come to the party. I also think the "punishment" should have been more related to the situation (not being able to go out without a parent nearby at all times, staying within arms or viewing length, coming when called, etc. . . then if child did not follow these rules with explanations, then the number of days of watching would be increased). Sometimes as parents we really get stressed out about our children's behaviour so we tend to crack down a little harder than we should (I know I do this sometimes). . .mom was probably really stressed when she couldn't find her kid and because she was so worried she gave him a punishment that would really affect him.

On another note, parents whose children run away from them. Well, DH and I call to our children before they get too far away that "we are going this way and we hope they come with us" (we've explained to our children that we will never ever leave them, but sometimes we need to go a different way and it would be really sucky if they went another way); most of the time this works. I almost never run after my children (unless they are in danger); I definately would not have chased my child for 30 minutes (I probably would have said, "Well, I'm going home now and going to bed. . .I'll probably lock the door so I hope you come too so you don't have to sleep outside).

Also, I think alarms and putting locks on the doors is way harsh! However, we do have a chain on our front door (for posters concerned about fire safety, we do have 4 other doors in the house that slide open, but DS usually doesn't go that way when he wants out) that DS can't open without dragging furniture around. . .so it does slow him down somewhat from leaving the house when I'm in another room (imagine looking out the window and seeing your DS naked playing in the middle of the neighborhood park and you didn't even know he'd gone out. . .I always lock the chain now).
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