Gentle Discipline with a 12 month old - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 24 Old 05-28-2010, 01:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My son is 12 months old, has been walking since 11 months, and is always on the move now. I was not raised with gentle discipline, and was instead raised with lots of no's, time-out's, and occasional spankings. I find that gentle discipline is the hardest of all the attachment parenting principals for me. It's hard not to say no to a 12 mo. old and what do you do if you don't do time-out's?

Here's some situations I need some gentle dicipline suggestions for:

*wants to walk in the store, etc., but wants to go where he wants to go and not where mama needs/wants to go

*bitting while nursing & biting mama's shoulder while being held

*Pulling outlet plugs out.

*crying/stiff body when getting into the carseat

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#2 of 24 Old 05-28-2010, 01:44 PM
 
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12 mo are too young for discipline. children can't understand rules or consequences that young.

1. I didn't take the children to the store. If I did and it became a problem, I would check out and leave. I shop alone now. You can also put the baby in a sling for shopping, time it to a time when they will be sleepy and will enjoy the sling.

2. both my babies bit. while nursing, I was careful not to have an obvious reaction (like a gasp or squeal) because that will reinforce the behavior. I just pull the face in to the breast so that the child's nose is pressed in, they let go in order to breathe. Now that dd2 is older (almost 18mo), if her teeth are a problem, I unlatch her and pull my shirt down. redirection is key at this age. giving something else to bite on when child bites your shoulder. say, do your teeth hurt? would you like a nice frozen cloth/ teether to bite on? as you offer it.

3. be somewhere where this can't happen. boht of my dds were fascinated with electrical cords, so I hear ya on this one. I would use 'catchphrases' throughout their growth. "cords are not for babies" while redirecting their play to something appropriate. If it was still a problem, I would remove all visible cords and use outlet protectors.

4. If my child did not want to travel in the car, we don't. Just like if I had an adult friend that had the same behavior, I would not force them. Walk with baby in a sling if you can, use public transportation where a carseat is not required maybe. But for us, we just didn't ride in the car.

I am hoping others will have some good stuff for you too. It is hard to get used to a mobile baby.

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#3 of 24 Old 05-28-2010, 02:33 PM
 
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I think with 1 yr olds, redirection/distraction is key.

1. I also wore my baby in a carrier in the store, until I had my second. Then I wore the 2nd in the carrier while the 1st sat in the cart. My 2nd (3 yrs old) always asks to walk in the grocery store; we tried it a few times with no success, so for now he continues to ride (with occ complaining and whining).

2. No suggestions. Neither of my kids has been a biter; but I know it's really hard to deal with one! Probably if you do a search on these boards for "biting" you'll probably come across some good discussions.

3. Outlets: get the kind of covers that an adult has to swivel to access the plug. I haven't seen these at places like Target, but I'm sure you can order them online. I've seen them and they seem pretty impossible for a kid to work. Also, again, distraction/redirection (yes, again and again and again and again!).

4. This one is hard. My 18 month old also does this. Often I try to distract her with "Did you see that bird? What does a bird say?", or something along those lines. Often, I'll bring a toy to the car and give it to her when she's doing The Plank - sometimes that distracts her, but not always. Sometimes, I'll let her play in the van while I get the 3 yr old in the car seat - if she can have some time to play in the van, sometimes she's more willing to get in the car seat. Sometimes - very occasionally, but there have been times it's been called for - I have to force her in while she's trying The Plank and crying. Once she's in, she finds her tethered paci and stops crying.

1 is hard! Have you read the book Your One Year Old book (Ames)? I thought it was pretty helpful. But really, at 1, distraction and redirection are the best.
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#4 of 24 Old 05-28-2010, 02:41 PM
 
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Gentle discipline does not mean punishment. Teaching a child self discipline however, is absolutely possible at 12 months old (or younger), though they might not fully be capable of using it until a bit older.

At 12 months old, my daughter definitely knew her limits, but we kept the "no's" strictly to what was unsafe. Anything safe was allowed (and never a big deal). To teach her not to climb up to where it was unsafe (for example, she had a thing about climbing up onto our end tables, which are quite unstable), we would allow her to climb up then shake the table. Not so hard that she would fall of course, but hard enough that she would feel unstable and want to come down. She learned very quickly that when I said the word "danger", not to go there.

A LOT of redirecting was used, but remember that children at this age (at any age, really) is a lot of "monkey see, monkey do". We can spank or punish, but this doesn't teach the child reasons not to bite, but rather it teaches that we're in control and if they don't listen to us, sometimes negative might happen (like time out).

For things like the car, we used distraction, and lots of it. We never wanted to teach her that certain behaviors got her what she wanted (like tantrums getting into the carseat meant we didn't leave the house), so for times like that we always made sure that we got ready to go VERY early, and never rushed her into the seat. Sometimes she'd fight us for 10 or 15 minutes, but she always went in happily on her own terms. What we didn't do though, was bring her back into the house (unless she was REALLY upset). Unfortunately for us though, my daughter gets horribly carsick (she'll throw up literally blocks from out house), so the car was always a touchy subject. Regardless of that fact, we never let her have control of if we left or not... But we always made sure that she was comfortable before putting her in.

We would either cover electrical cords with a box over the plug so she couldn't pull them out, or redirect her whenever she'd go near them. She was curious about them, but for her own safety, this was something we never allowed her to explore. The "danger" technique we used with the tables worked well with this for that age period.

12 months is a hard age, or at least it was for us.
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#5 of 24 Old 07-04-2011, 07:36 PM
 
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There's some good suggestions here...I have an 11 month old and for me the carseat thing is probably the hardest on the list. For shopping I put him in the buggy or in the ergo carrier, that works well enough. For the carseat I sing a really happy song about riding safely in the car or distract him by being suuuper happy and clappy....as crazy as it sounds that works for us...at least to get him buckled in...he might get cranky again when we start going...so I try to have a bunch of things in the car I can hand in that I rotate out every so often so its not the same old stuff. Non toy things work the best...a metal water bottle for instance. I used to apologize and make  a sad face everytime I buckled him in because I felt so sorry that he hated it so much but that seemed to reinforce it was something to be hated....now that I always act happy and talk positively about the experience it really does seem to HELP!!  

 

biting with nursing...I did yelp in pain and take him off and tell him it hurt. He learned pretty quick, Im not sure if it was the shock of teh sound I made or the fact that I took the milk away but it did work after about 5 times.

 

I feel like Im trying to find my own way with "gentle discipline"because I do not want him to learn he can throw a fit and get his way and I want him to learn no does mean no to me ESPECIALLY when it comes to safety issues. However, I still want to be positive, and gentle. Im getting from reading these threads that 10-18 m is just a very hard each and involves an exhausting amount of redirecting, which is less exhausting with really good childproofing and LOTS OF large motor and outdoor time...so thats what im trying!! Good luck to you!!

 

 

 

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#6 of 24 Old 07-06-2011, 09:55 PM
 
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*wants to walk in the store, etc., but wants to go where he wants to go and not where mama needs/wants to go

 

Either put him in the cart, a baby carrier, or let him walk until it becomes an issue and then pick him up at that time.  Choose a time that you don't need to go shopping to practice walking around in a store, and end it (pick up or leave) when your child is done walking in a manor that you deem appropriate. (This has helped me a lot lately with my 13 month-old, as she is wanting to walk everywhere lately.)

 

Quote:
*biting while nursing & biting mama's shoulder while being held

 

"(No), that hurts me.  Bite on this instead."  Offer a teether or something like that.  Honestly, I do sometimes put my daughter down if she bites or give her to my husband for a minute, but that is because I get really angry.  Thankfully my child is not much of a biter.

 

Quote:
*Pulling outlet plugs out.

 

Redirection, with a short phrase beforehand like, "plugs stay in the wall."  Every time.  I personally don't use outlet covers, but I do have a bookshelf full of books that is off-limits to my daughter, and eventually she outgrew the need to rip them off the shelves.  Don't know if it was the redirection or just her getting older, but she doesn't mess with them anymore.

Quote:
*crying/stiff body when getting into the carseat

 

Give him a few minutes.  Maybe offer a toy/distraction.  Take him out, give him a hug, try again.  If it still doesn't work, and we have to be somewhere, I'd still go.  If we don't have to leave this minute, I let my daughter climb around in the car a few minutes, and that seems to help her.  I don't know if that would work with all kids though.  My daughter is the type to calm down in a few minutes after I start driving and maybe fall asleep in the car because if she's that upset it's usually because she is tired, and we are about to go home.

 

I can't say I have the gentlest technique but I have never felt the need for a time-out.  If you view discipline as teaching rather than punitive/punishment, then I don't think a 12 month old is too young for that.  Too young to expect it to work in changing their behavior right away, but not too young to start modeling and teaching correct behavior.


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#7 of 24 Old 07-07-2011, 07:49 AM
 
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Distraction!  The best tool in the box for that age!

 

In the store keep him in the stroller or carrier, and bring along a desirable snack or let him play with your cell phone or other usually-off-limits exciting "toy".  (And shop by yourself when possible!).  Same thing for the car seat.  Use your imagination - distraction doesn't have to be with a "thing" either.  It could be singing a song, making crazy animal sounds, tickling, blowing raspberries, etc.


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#8 of 24 Old 07-07-2011, 10:07 AM
 
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I think you've received a lot of good advice

 

At 12 months, my main technique has always been redirecting the child to something else.

 

I think it's important to remind yourself from time to time that they're not doing this on purpose to annoy you ;), they're trying to learn, explore, etc.

 

For the car seat, one thing that came to mind is to make sure it still fits your child.  The recommendation these days is to stay rear-facing until 2 years of age.  I know that the car seat we used with DS1 and DS2 would have not worked very well for that, but the one we have for DS3 is designed to be rear-facing to a greater height/weight limit.  So part of the issue may be comfort.

 

For the store, I either put DS in the seat with a seatbelt, or if he's fussy, in a sling (or just carry him).  Key, though, is choosing the right time to go.  Not near a typical feeding time... not near a typical nap time... etc.

 

The biting is probably a teething thing.  Offer a teething biscuit (there are even good recipes online to make your own) at that time.  Also, check out these tips from KellyMom http://www.kellymom.com/bf/older-baby/biting.html


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#9 of 24 Old 07-08-2011, 12:34 PM
 
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i found some outlet covers at babies r us that are full outlet plates that screw into the wall, and if a cord is unplugged the cover is spring loaded and closes over the outlet holes.

for the car, i keep toys in the car that dd can only play with when she's in her seat. i made sure it was toys that she really likes. as i'm first putting her in the seat i make sure she sees the toys. i also put up a mirror for her. i figured out that her crying was because she gets bored and lonely, so the toys fixed the problem for us. also i leave early so that i'm not rushed or stressed getting her in the seat. i found that she picks up on my emotions and has much more of a hard time with the carseat if we are running late.

for the grocery store, i got a padded cover for the seat in the cart to make it comfy, i bring a toy that velcros onto the cart, and i make sure to talk to her and engage with her as i shop. if she wants to get down and go look at something, i will instead try to pick it up and show it to her and talk about it, so her curiosity is met without running away from me. again for her it is mostly a boredom issue.

if i simply had not made her ride in the car we would have both starved to death...i must drive to buy food, visit the doctor, etc. and lots of people can't afford to hire a babysitter just to grocery shop. but get creative and try to figure out the reason for the behavior and then try things that you are able to. how can you make the car and the grocery cart fun places to sit in?


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#10 of 24 Old 07-09-2011, 04:38 PM
 
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Totally agree that 12 months is too young to really discipline. I'm sorta in the same boat as you-- I have an 11 month old and she's our first.

 

However I don't believe that a year old is too young to begin to start "planting seeds", if you will, of discipline. Also, I don't think that it's a given that teaching a child "no" isn't gentle. My 11 month old is just starting to grasp "no" (along with a stern look), and she's actually starting to obey. We don't say "no" ALL the time though. Just when it matters,

 

As far as walking in the store with you....if he insists on wandering away I'd either:

 

a.) invest in a harness w/ a long handle you can hold onto. We have one now, waiting for Annie to start walking. I wanted it mostly for safety in crowds, but I could see it working for your situation. If you search the archives here there's been several threads about these harness/"kid leash" things and most of the feedback has been positive.

 

b.) put him in the cart and try to make it fun for him. (give him toys or groceries to play with.....little songs, etc., to distract him from the fact that you aren't letting him walk.) Again...nothing not gentle about that.


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#11 of 24 Old 07-09-2011, 06:17 PM
 
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We have said since the babe got mobile (9 months or so) "that's a no, lets find a yes" whenever he approached something dangerous (tall floor lamp; outlets) then picked him up and redirected.  Now, he generally seems to know that when we say "that's a no, lets find a yes" that something fun is about to happen and willingly leaves what he's getting into.  

 

For biting, we do set him down on the floor and say "no bite, bites hurt mama/mommy".  We figure it's a natural consequence...if you bite then you don't get to nurse; play etc (just as if you pat the cat too hard the cat will run away and that fun is done).  This has worked very well and now (at 14 months) we have seen him get frustrated and CHOOSE not to bite us (bite something that we have told him is okay to bite was the latest success!).  

 

He doesn't mind the car, we have special car toys that he only gets in the car...generally the kind of stuff we don't care about getting lost (whiffle balls for example).  

 

We have had to remind ourselves sometimes that no one is happy all of the time...we will take care of his needs and even wants as much as we can...but sometimes he will be unhappy and we won't be able to "fix" it...and that's okay.  Sometimes we all gotta give...and that means sometimes mamas don't get what they want and other times babies (usually mamas ;)

 

Good luck...it's not easy, is it!?  


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#12 of 24 Old 07-11-2011, 07:39 AM
 
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*wants to walk in the store, etc., but wants to go where he wants to go and not where mama needs/wants to go
This will eventually improve, walking anywhere was NOT fun when he was that age because he had no concept of coming with me... Within a few months it started to improve though! Anyway, one thing you can do is give him a few minutes to wander around & explore and get it out of his system or 'practice' following you when there's no pressure. Then you can put him in a carrier (or cart/stroller or whatever) for the remainder of the errand. How's his receptive language? He's probably too young for this still, but once he understands it, you can give him the choice -- "You can walk beside me or go in the cart," not in a menacing/threatening way, just a choice like you'd ask if he wants a red cup or blue one.

*bitting while nursing & biting mama's shoulder while being held
I usually just put DS down for a minute or two whenever he did that. Putting him down doesn't necessarily mean you need to withhold attention/affection -- just that you stop nursing or carrying for a moment so he can begin to make that connection that biting is not acceptable.

*Pulling outlet plugs out.
This was a HUGE problem for us until we replaced all of our outlets with tamper-resistant ones that have built-in (internal) shutters instead of the covers. That was the only truly effective solution for us, he was VERY into the outlets.

*crying/stiff body when getting into the carseat
Talking (about where you're going next, what fun things he'll do there, etc.) can help... we had a car seat song I made up that helped this too. Can he start climbing into the car seat himself? Or at least help you with the process, ask him to put his arm out or whatever, so he feels like he's doing it, rather than it being done to him.

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#13 of 24 Old 12-04-2011, 08:05 AM
 
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Hi, I have a 1 yr old and a 3 year old... um I have a serious question..HOW is time out and no-no's not GENTLE punishment.... REALLY now we dont tell our kids NO???  you will RUIN your child if this is really how your gonna parent..my 3 year old.. was told NO, gets spankings and time outs.. and you bet your butt he wouldnt pull half the crap I see these monsters people are raising do.. Im sorry but it just makes me sick to see parents really going this far...  I love my children and would do anything for them, including spanking them (as much as I hate to do it) because that is what they need..... im sorry your having such a hard time with your kids..but it doesnt shock me.

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#14 of 24 Old 12-04-2011, 11:40 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tennia Riechers View Post

Hi, I have a 1 yr old and a 3 year old... um I have a serious question..HOW is time out and no-no's not GENTLE punishment.... REALLY now we dont tell our kids NO???  you will RUIN your child if this is really how your gonna parent..my 3 year old.. was told NO, gets spankings and time outs.. and you bet your butt he wouldnt pull half the crap I see these monsters people are raising do.. Im sorry but it just makes me sick to see parents really going this far...  I love my children and would do anything for them, including spanking them (as much as I hate to do it) because that is what they need..... im sorry your having such a hard time with your kids..but it doesnt shock me.

ooooh.  hmmm.  
 

 

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#15 of 24 Old 12-04-2011, 11:48 AM
 
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We limit our no's, don't do time outs and never hit/spank--instead we have natural consequences (if you can't be gentle with the cat/dog they will have to go in the other room); distraction (why don't you wrestle with stuffed bear!); and the occasional firm "no" (occasional being key, he knows we mean it when we do use it) and removal from dangerous situation (That's a no, let's find a yes...followed by being placed or engaged with in another place, eg by his duplos where we build a tower)--we also love reading the "teeth are not for biting"; "tails are not for pulling" and "hands are not for hitting" board books.  And, with these methods, we have a delightful 19 month old who is relatively gentle, doesn't mess with the outlet covers, doesn't bite and knows that in stores he will either be carried or in a cart...

 

Sure, some of this is the luck of having a generally easy going kid, but a lot of it is gentle discipline WORKING.  


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#16 of 24 Old 12-04-2011, 01:38 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Tennia Riechers View Post

Hi, I have a 1 yr old and a 3 year old... um I have a serious question..HOW is time out and no-no's not GENTLE punishment.... REALLY now we dont tell our kids NO???  you will RUIN your child if this is really how your gonna parent..my 3 year old.. was told NO, gets spankings and time outs.. and you bet your butt he wouldnt pull half the crap I see these monsters people are raising do.. Im sorry but it just makes me sick to see parents really going this far...  I love my children and would do anything for them, including spanking them (as much as I hate to do it) because that is what they need..... im sorry your having such a hard time with your kids..but it doesnt shock me.



I Think you've found yourself in the wrong place. Read the forum description. Mothering does not advocate or condone physical punishments. There are plenty of forums and/or discussion boards that do, you can post there. Hitting a child is NOT part of gentle discipline. I have 3 children- 9, 6, and 15 months and have never spanked any of them. I don't use the word "no" for just anything either with my 15 month old. I reserve those words for major things like walking in the street or something that might injure them. That way, when I use the word, NO!, they listen. It's not an ordinary word in my household. And sorry, but my older kids are AWESOME kids that I get compliments on all of the time on their wonderful behavior.  

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#17 of 24 Old 12-04-2011, 05:40 PM
 
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I think she's found herself a wonderful place!  Maybe it's entirely NOT the type of forum she thought she was in, but...I would love for you, Tennia, to learn about Gentle disciplining.  I hope for your children's sake And yours that you will be interested in learning more about it from these mamas...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tennia Riechers View Post

Hi, I have a 1 yr old and a 3 year old... um I have a serious question..HOW is time out and no-no's not GENTLE punishment.... REALLY now we dont tell our kids NO???  you will RUIN your child if this is really how your gonna parent..my 3 year old.. was told NO, gets spankings and time outs.. and you bet your butt he wouldnt pull half the crap I see these monsters people are raising do.. Im sorry but it just makes me sick to see parents really going this far...  I love my children and would do anything for them, including spanking them (as much as I hate to do it) because that is what they need..... im sorry your having such a hard time with your kids..but it doesnt shock me.

 
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I Think you've found yourself in the wrong place. Read the forum description. Mothering does not advocate or condone physical punishments. There are plenty of forums and/or discussion boards that do, you can post there. Hitting a child is NOT part of gentle discipline. I have 3 children- 9, 6, and 15 months and have never spanked any of them. I don't use the word "no" for just anything either with my 15 month old. I reserve those words for major things like walking in the street or something that might injure them. That way, when I use the word, NO!, they listen. It's not an ordinary word in my household. And sorry, but my older kids are AWESOME kids that I get compliments on all of the time on their wonderful behavior.  



 

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#18 of 24 Old 08-30-2012, 09:27 PM
 
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I agree with the statement that discipline is definitely possible at 12 months or younger, especially since proponents of gentle discipline are often quoted as saying that discipline means to teach, and we are teaching them lots of things from day one by our actions and reactions.

I appreciate EarthBirthLady's comment about not wanting her children to learn they can just throw a fit and get their way, and Wishin&Hoping's comment that no one is happy all the time and that being a part of a family requires give and take. Of course, at a young age much of that will be taking, but one of the most important things to me is that my children grow to have godly character (especially self-control, since the lack of self-control is, in my view, the major contributor to many problems that plague the lives of adults who never learned good habits and self-discipline, myself included). I don't believe that modeling good character is by itself enough to teach good character (though it is an important component). I think children need to be given opportunities to practice those skills themselves, in doses that are appropriate for them, of course. In theory, a model would be enough, but if a child grows accustomed to being continually indulged, why would they suddenly want to give up getting what they want and decide to do the things they don't want to do for the sake of others and the sake of having good character? I don't think good character will be developed without those opportunities to practice. Of course, that entails not just withholding things they want but doing it lovingly, doing it in appropriate, natural ways, and actually teaching them about those character qualities in the process and praising them for it. My 11 month old may not understand all of my words yet, but I still like to praise him for being patient when it takes me a while to get his lunch on his tray and he sits there nicely without whining. And I bet he will know what patience is at a pretty early age, and maybe be more eager to act patiently in the future because he knows it feels good to be praised for it. Though of course I will need to model it for him as well when he is testing my patience, or when his dad is testing my patience, or when I am stuck behind a slow driver when I'm in a hurry.

I also think it is good for children when their parents go about their normal tasks, especially domestic tasks like grocery shopping, cooking, laundry, and other things that are vital for the life of the family. It is good for them to learn those skills by observing and participating, good for them to see what it takes for a family to survive and maintain a healthy life, and good for them to see that life is not just about their entertainment and comfort but there are things that need to be done, you can enjoy "work", and it is valuable to be a member of a family and community. Of course you still stop and play with them regularly, and I understand that sometimes it is easier to go grocery shopping without them if your schedule and childcare arrangements allow for that, especially if your child is particularly adverse to a certain activity, but I don't want to let my children's preferences run our family's life when it comes to basic needs like buying food. I respect my son's personhood and I want him to have some say in our family, but I don't want to essentially give him the only say. We are going to ride in the car sometimes, whether or not he wants to. We are going to get groceries. He is going to be told no, sometimes for things other than safety issues, because I care about the health and safety of his soul and heart and mind just as much as his body.  But I do like Wishin&Hopin's idea of "that's a no, let's find a yes"!

 

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Originally Posted by sgmom View Post

Gentle discipline does not mean punishment. Teaching a child self discipline however, is absolutely possible at 12 months old (or younger), though they might not fully be capable of using it until a bit older.

At 12 months old, my daughter definitely knew her limits, but we kept the "no's" strictly to what was unsafe. Anything safe was allowed (and never a big deal). To teach her not to climb up to where it was unsafe (for example, she had a thing about climbing up onto our end tables, which are quite unstable), we would allow her to climb up then shake the table. Not so hard that she would fall of course, but hard enough that she would feel unstable and want to come down. She learned very quickly that when I said the word "danger", not to go there.

A LOT of redirecting was used, but remember that children at this age (at any age, really) is a lot of "monkey see, monkey do". We can spank or punish, but this doesn't teach the child reasons not to bite, but rather it teaches that we're in control and if they don't listen to us, sometimes negative might happen (like time out).

For things like the car, we used distraction, and lots of it. We never wanted to teach her that certain behaviors got her what she wanted (like tantrums getting into the carseat meant we didn't leave the house), so for times like that we always made sure that we got ready to go VERY early, and never rushed her into the seat. Sometimes she'd fight us for 10 or 15 minutes, but she always went in happily on her own terms. What we didn't do though, was bring her back into the house (unless she was REALLY upset). Unfortunately for us though, my daughter gets horribly carsick (she'll throw up literally blocks from out house), so the car was always a touchy subject. Regardless of that fact, we never let her have control of if we left or not... But we always made sure that she was comfortable before putting her in.

We would either cover electrical cords with a box over the plug so she couldn't pull them out, or redirect her whenever she'd go near them. She was curious about them, but for her own safety, this was something we never allowed her to explore. The "danger" technique we used with the tables worked well with this for that age period.

12 months is a hard age, or at least it was for us.
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#19 of 24 Old 09-01-2012, 08:22 AM
 
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4. If my child did not want to travel in the car, we don't. Just like if I had an adult friend that had the same behavior, I would not force them. Walk with baby in a sling if you can, use public transportation where a carseat is not required maybe. But for us, we just didn't ride in the car.
 

(Personally, I do not know any adults who scream and arch their back when getting into the car.)

 

I try to discipline as gently as possible, but some of these suggestions are absurd. My kids are 3yo and 15 mo.

12 mo is BORDERLINE too early for discipline. A 12mo can learn, and they NEED to learn a lot of things so as not to become monster toddlers.

 

If your kid doesn't want to go in the carseat you don't go out? That's ridiculous. Sometimes you have to go out, especially with an older kid or a working parent. As a pp said, talk to the child, even if he doesn't understand all of it, and tell him where you are going...the park, grandma's, etc...sometimes just hearing you mention something that he recognizes and likes calms him a little. Sometimes not, but we have to go out, so I bend him as gently as possible, put him in his seat, put on some music, and go. He usually calms down shortly after the car starts moving.

 

Shop by yourself? If it's so easy for you to just suggest that as a solution, then I am totally jealous of the amount of free time you have. DH works long hours, and I work PT a lot of the hours he is home. If I didn't take my kids shopping we would have no food in the house. If the kid is pitching a fit at the store, I may cut the trip short, but  not short enough that he thinks it's short due to his tantrum. Otherwise you will end up with a 2-3 yo throwing tantrums to leave the store, because he knows it will work. Sometimes snacks, toys and distractions work, sometimes not so much.

 

At 15 m, my youngest is starting to learn these things. He hasn't arched his back for the car seat in a few months, and our shopping trips, while rarely pleasant, are becoming more tolerable.

 

I think 12 mo is a key age, as a pp said, in planting seed of discipline. They may not say much, but they understand a lot.

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#20 of 24 Old 09-01-2012, 11:46 AM
 
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You've gotten some good advice, and I would add my recommendation that you get your hands on some child development literature and gentle parenting guides so you can understand better what is appropriate for different aged children.  For example, a 12 month old lacks impulse control.  Even if they could understand you when you say, "No, don't touch the cord" they would lack the ability to stop themselves from doing it.  It's so important to have realistic expectations.  Yes, they can eventually learn, but in the meantime it's so easy to get frustrated, angry, and blame the baby for being "bad" when they really can't control it.  I personally feel that the majority of conflicts and punishments stem from not understanding the child's developmental age, and with a little education we would be able to be empathetic to their struggles and emotions rather than feeling the need to force them into obedience.

 

Another developmental tidbit that's good to keep in mind is that babies (and toddlers) tend to act on the action word you give them, whether or not there is a "no" in front of it.  Even a verbal 2 year old who understands what "no" means can process the action word before they realize that there was a negative modifier in front of it.  So - you say, "Don't touch, don't climb, no yelling, no running," and they hear, "Don't touch, don't climb, no yelling, no running".  It's very important to state what you want positively - "Leave it, stay down, speak quietly, walk please."  I've also found that DS responds much better to me saying, "stop" than "no."  

 

At 12 months, it's all about creating an environment that is safe for them so that you don't have to intervene as often, and when you do need to step in, using distraction and redirection rather than punishment.  

 

Some books I would recommend -

 

The Emotional Life of a Toddler

Unconditional Parenting

Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves (especially good if you would like to raise your children differently from how you were raised)

 

Happy parenting!




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#21 of 24 Old 09-01-2012, 12:17 PM
 
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I don't think 12 months is too young to guide a child's behavior.  I agree that sometimes something unpleasant is going to have to happen to kiddo.  The car, for example:  Little Miss, 11 mos., hates getting in the car if she's already been out several times that day.  Stiff body, crying, the whole nine.  I always empathize ("I'm sorry!  I know, riding in your car seat sucks, and we've already done is so much today!), explain that this has to happen ("We can't leave Papa at work.  We have to go get Papa."), strap her in, give her a kiss and then blast the AC and play her favorite music for her.  (She likes to be cold, and T. Rex, so that's what she gets.)  Her tantrum is short-lived with this method.  I mean, the way I see it, approaching things in this manner does work for both of us.  Sure, we're both pretty unhappy for about 3 minutes;  she's mad because she's back in her car seat, and I'm not delighted to be stuck in a sub-compact with a tiny, angry opera singer, but in the end we get done what needs to get done, and when she gets home, she goes on her swing.  I feel like I'm teaching her to be reasonable (Look, I'm sorry, but not going somewhere because she doesn't want to doesn't work for us, and with mine, maybe not yours, but with mine this would result in an unreasonable little tyrant.) and that her feelings are important too, and eventually, something less sucky will happen in her day.


lovestory.gif   And on 09/23/2011, we were three;  husband, daughter, and me!

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#22 of 24 Old 09-08-2012, 07:51 PM
 
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I like the 'that's a no let's find a yes'.  I don't say that but I act it out.  Generally I use "ah-ah" followed by a redirect to something. It's the sound I use for my dog training (a behavioral interrupt) so I sort of use it without thinking of it as a 'dog training thing'.  "No" I do try to reserve for the more dangerous things and I use a firm tone.  I did the disapproving look but DD thinks my facial expressions are all hillarious :-P  I don't see time-outs as bad, but again I'm coming from a different perspective here.  Time outs mean 'you are too worked up, you need to pause and think before you do something bad'.  It's all in how you do it - just like crating a dog.  You don't yell bad dog and grab them by the collar admonishing the whole way to the crate only to slam the door and then proceed to lecture them when they come out.  DD is 10mos, and let me tell you, much like DH she has a temper.  DH was belted as a kid, and clearly it did nothing to improve his behavior as an adult and he is pro-punishment and it's becoming a parenting battle as DD gets older.  I haven't had nipple biting yet, but she has thrown some epic tantrums if she goes to nurse and things aren't flowing as fast as she wants them to be (especially if she's tired).  She arches, flails, kicks, screams.  I don't talk to her, I don't touch her, I generally let the wave of emotion pass, try to get her to latch on again, and if she's really bad, the shirt goes down, we get up and we walk until calm. Then I talk to her calmly and we try again.

 

I do always make a big deal about the good behaviors, like currently she's learning how to share, generally it's food she pulls from her mouth and tries to feed me, and I smile and tell her thank you and how nice she is to share.  I stress the words I want her to pick up on: share, thank you, please, etc.  She now smiles ear to ear when I say thank you and tries to give me even more things!

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#23 of 24 Old 09-09-2012, 11:58 AM
 
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For example, a 12 month old lacks impulse control.  Even if they could understand you when you say, "No, don't touch the cord" they would lack the ability to stop themselves from doing it.

Not sure that I agree with this. My 11 month old is quite interested in the box fan we have in our hallway and wants to stick his fingers in it while it's moving. To my surprise, after only 3 or 4 times of saying, "We don't touch the fan" or something to that effect and removing him or the fan, the other day he was reaching for it and I said "Don't touch" and he stopped, thought about reaching for it again and thought better of it, sat up a few feet from it and looked at it, making no more attempts. We are making similar progress with biting, sippy-cup throwing, and eyeglasses swiping. I know he's not going to stop himself every time or understand all my instructions (like "wait for mama before you climb the stairs), but the things we take the time to work on with him he is picking up on. I know we need to have patience and keep their developmental stage in mind, but to a certain degree children will live up to our expectations of them. I've recently heard it said by child development experts, teachers and even parents that many children flourish in their abilities when they go to school because teachers often expect more from them than their parents do. One reason being that a teacher cannot zip 20 coats every time or wash everyone's hands for them or foster learning without expecting cooperative behavior. Sometimes parents hold back on teaching and discipline because it's easier to do things themselves or not address a behavior consistently or just think of their "little baby" as more dependent than they are because they grow up too fast.

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#24 of 24 Old 09-10-2012, 12:00 PM
 
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@jjcole - I would imagine that impulse control in children is similar to the ability to self soothe, in that each baby is born with varying degrees of it and it develops at a vastly different rate among different kids. My 21mo has very little of either.

I agree about expectations, all within the parameters of that particular child's developmental stage, like you said. The note about school is interesting - I recently read about parents setting up a cycle of incompetence by doings things for their kids because they don't want to see them fail/struggle. Parents jump in too soon to "help," but end up sending the message that, "You can't do it right, I'll do it," and they continue to believe it long after they've mastered the skill, leading to an 8 year old whining for you to tie his shoes and zip his coat.



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