Does Gental discipline=No discipline?? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-26-2006, 08:13 PM
 
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Originally Posted by johub
Nobody is saying that a child should always remember what they should do every time. That has not once been mentioned or implied.
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Originally Posted by Stayathomemommy
This is how i would deal with it the FIRST TIME. (snip example)
Sure sounded that way to me.
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Old 01-26-2006, 08:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by aira
Sure sounded that way to me.
Right, the first time the child hits another child she talks to him and explains why not etc. . . . Because he isnt expected to remember instantly.
But if he continues he leaves.
I dont think responding to a child with instruction is the same as expecting them to always remember to do what they are supposed to.

All the poster was saying was that if she stopped the action, discussed the issue with her child and he continued to hit she would not continue to allow him to go back into that situation.
To me that is all about giving a second chance.
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Old 01-26-2006, 09:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by johub
Right, the first time the child hits another child she talks to him and explains why not etc. . . . Because he isnt expected to remember instantly.
But if he continues he leaves.
I dont think responding to a child with instruction is the same as expecting them to always remember to do what they are supposed to.

All the poster was saying was that if she stopped the action, discussed the issue with her child and he continued to hit she would not continue to allow him to go back into that situation.
To me that is all about giving a second chance.
I would take this action, but I think part of GD is a different viewpoint. For example, this wouldn't be a situation where I would say to my child, or even think to myself, "Well, maybe now you'll learn your lesson! If you can't stop hitting you'll have to leave, how do you like that?"

Instead, I think my attitude would be more considerate of my child's feelings. I don't think my children really WANT to hurt others, so I would help them not do that by removing the temptation. And protecting the other child at the same time.

Also, I think the most GD reaction here would be not to allow the child to hit another time. Gently disciplining means, IMO, being present and prepared, watching for the signs that your child is getting frustrated, and helping them by removing them, distracting them, whatever before they do it.

I personally think this is the most effective way to parent, whether you're punitive or not. Taking action, not reacting. Or "putting out fires" as Joline just said in another thread.

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Old 01-26-2006, 09:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Stayathomemommy
This is how i would deal with it the FIRST TIME. but i have seen it a billion times that little Joe looks at his mommy and says, "O.K. i wont hit" and turns around walks up to bill and wacks him over the head again. Joes mom in turn squats down and talks things threw and the whole thing goes through this cycle many times. when something isnt effective then its basically like you are doing nothing IMO. I also think having your child apoligize it very important!!!

IF Joe goes and hits bill again, and i am Joe's Mommy. i take Joe and remove him from the play ground so he cant hurt bill or anyone else.
I figured this would come up, so here's my thoughts, again (whether you want them or not )

JOE proceeds to whack Bill on the head again......

NO DISCIPLINE: Parent continues to do nothing, or just keeps calling out to Joe without getting off their butt to address the situation.

GENTLE DISCIPLINE: Now, can take many forms. Parent can go to Joe and say, "you seem to be having a hard time being gentle right now - let's go play on the swings?" or, "is there something bothering you that you're not being gentle with Bill?" or, "what else can we play with that won't get you upset, you seem to be having a hard time playing with Bill without hurting him." OR, Parent can tell Joe that since he's having a hard time being gentle and it's not fair to Bill to have to worry about getting hurt, they'll go somewhere else to calm down and do whatever, and then leave. If Joe promises again to not hit Bill and asks to stay, that COULD be OK, but the parent should be RIGHT THERE, to intercept at this point before another whack could happen. It's then up to the parent whether to leave or not...and would depend on the parent's "style" of GD.

NON-GENTLE DISCIPLINE: Parent throws a fit, yelling and shaming Joe, probably spanking again (or they do it this time if they didn't last time). Parent tells Joe since he was so bad and mean, are leaving now, and if anyone else is involved (siblings), throws in a heap of guilt about now the other sibling can't have any fun because Joe was mean/bad. Joe most likely will lose some completely unrelated privilege when he gets home.


Personally? I'd probably do the redirection thing and get my kid to play somewhere else with me, if they were having a hard time with someone else...and talk to them about it later and come up with other things they could have done. If he didn't want to do anything else with me, and was having a meltdown, I'd probably leave the playground, cause there was clearly something going on that was setting him off.


I think someone (dharmamama?) said earlier that they don't always believe there's a deep underlying issue with everything that happens, soemtimes it's just experimenting and seein gwhat will happen, where the line is, and I believe that too. Sometimes, it just is what it is, and the less drama you attach to it as the parent (you can still be firm and serious without melodrama, shaming, or guilt), the better.

As far as the apologizing, I don't agree with forcing your kid to apologize...I don't like apologies that don't mean anything, and if the kid is upset he's not gonna mean it. I would ask him what he thought he could do to make Bill feel better, and then suggest something, I might even go over and comfort Bill myself and say I was sorry he got hurt, thereby modeling the apology for my son, but I wouldn't 'make' him apologize.

Early night for me ladies, I'm out of here. I've enjoyed this one.

Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
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Old 01-26-2006, 09:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by donosmommy04
NO DISCIPLINE #2: Joe's parent screams from their seat on a nearby bench, "Joe, cut that out!" or "Joe, that isn't nice, stop it.", but does not get up and does not address the situation beyond that.
I didnt address this earlier, but for whatever reason it has stayed with me.
While I do not believe that screaming is necessary. I dont think that it is necessarily a sign of no discipline when a parent can remind and direct her child from across the room or sandbox. (especially if it actually works)
For example, if the child already knows that they should not do x and why, and they usually can reliably remember, it isnt always necessary to go through the entire lecture again every time the child forgets.
I have three children age 3 and under and I have to supervise them all at once. So I could theoretically be pushing one child on the swing, while supervising another on the slide and a third playing in the sand.
I have been known to remind my children verbally from a distance the first time an "offense" happens. Of course I GOMA (get off my a$$) if it happens again. But this does not mean I am not addressing the issue or that I am failing to discipline my children.
All it means is that sometimes discipline is below the radar of others watching.
I happen to have a huge amount of luck with this, ask once, then get up method. Even if it appears that my butt is stuck on the park bench 'doing nothing'
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Old 01-27-2006, 05:18 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Stayathomemommy
I thought i made it clear on the thread 'What exactly IS gentle discipline? How/where do I start? that i posted on that Erika, the poster, is my friend.
No, it wasn't clear to me but that makes much more sense now! Thanks for answering me about that and not taking offence.

I'm done with the theory for now.

Mama to DD September 2001 and DD April 2011 *Winner for most typos* eat.gif
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Old 01-27-2006, 09:29 AM
 
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Originally Posted by johub
I didnt address this earlier, but for whatever reason it has stayed with me.
While I do not believe that screaming is necessary. I dont think that it is necessarily a sign of no discipline when a parent can remind and direct her child from across the room or sandbox. (especially if it actually works)
For example, if the child already knows that they should not do x and why, and they usually can reliably remember, it isnt always necessary to go through the entire lecture again every time the child forgets.
I have three children age 3 and under and I have to supervise them all at once. So I could theoretically be pushing one child on the swing, while supervising another on the slide and a third playing in the sand.
I have been known to remind my children verbally from a distance the first time an "offense" happens. Of course I GOMA (get off my a$$) if it happens again. But this does not mean I am not addressing the issue or that I am failing to discipline my children.
All it means is that sometimes discipline is below the radar of others watching.
I happen to have a huge amount of luck with this, ask once, then get up method. Even if it appears that my butt is stuck on the park bench 'doing nothing'
Joline
Hey Joline, thanks for pointing this out...I guess a better choice of word would have been 'shout'....I didn't necessarily mean scream as in mad.....hope that makes it more clear..

and to me, the difference between a verbal reminder from a gentle parent and a verbal reminder from an uninvolved parent would be the reaction of the kid to the parent, and what happened next....

If the kid gave some kind of reaction of acknowledgement back to the parent, even just looking at them for a second or two, at least there's a connection there. If the kid completely ignores the parent, gives no response, and just keeps on doing what they're doing, then I'd consider that the parent doesn't necessarily address things.

AND, you did say you'd GOYA if it happened again with your kid....there's the difference.

Thanks for pointing that out to me! Hard to convey things online, sometimes, huh?

Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
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Old 01-27-2006, 05:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Stayathomemommy
"Joe's parent goes to Bill and makes sure he is OK. Joe's parent then takes Joe aside and tells him that hitting people is not OK, and that it hurts them, and briefly tells Joe some ways he can *talk* to Bill and get his point across. Joe is asked if he can think of anything that might make Bill feel better (and maybe parent suggests that apologies or hugs sometimes make people feel better). Joe's parent asks Joe if he thinks he'll be able to go back and play with Bill without hurting him, or if he needs some time to calm down. "

This is how i would deal with it the FIRST TIME. but i have seen it a billion times that little Joe looks at his mommy and says, "O.K. i wont hit" and turns around walks up to bill and wacks him over the head again. Joes mom in turn squats down and talks things threw and the whole thing goes through this cycle many times. when something isnt effective then its basically like you are doing nothing IMO. I also think having your child apoligize it very important!!!

IF Joe goes and hits bill again, and i am Joe's Mommy. i take Joe and remove him from the play ground so he cant hurt bill or anyone else.
Your next step wouldn't be to find out the reasons he continues hitting? IMO, if a child continues hitting, after hearing alternative ways to express his feelings, there is most certainly a reason. Perhaps he sees hitting on tv, as an effective way of dealing with problems. Perhaps he lacks the impulse control to not hit at the moment, in which case alternative ways of expressing anger need to be repeated over and over, until they sink in. you get the point. Whether its effective the first time, doesn't mean it won't become effective after repeating it.
I think having a child apologize when he's not sorry, is not a good thing. Its lying, and it kinda gets the child out of feeling bad for how his actions affected someone. "I said I'm sorry, that fixes it."

Not saying I would let the hitting continue in the moment. Protecting others from harm is very important. I would certainly distract him, move on to another activity, or even leave the park if the temptation is still to much to resist. But not in a punitive way, kwim?
But I wouldn't give up on *teaching* by giving info and alternatives.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dharmamama
Ok, I see what you are saying. I guess the attitude my husband and I take toward that is that, this house belongs to the entire family, we all live here, we all have some responsibility to the house, and we all have to pitch in to help keep it nice, even when we don't want to. I am not shy about telling my kids two things when we encounter cleaning battles: 1) We all have jobs to do around the house. I have my jobs, you have yours, and I have neither the time nor the inclination to add your jobs on top of mine just because you don't want to do them and 2) There are plenty of times that I do things for you even though I don't want to because I know that my helped is needed/appreciated. I expect the same from you, NOT because I am the Momma and get to boss you around but because we are all mebers of this family.

Perhaps it's just a difference in the lesson we are trying to teach? I know that I, for one, know that I have to take care of the house because my family depends on me to do it, even though I find no pleasure in it whatsoever!
I prefer to set up a dynamic of *helping* each other. I'll help ds (even if I don't want to) and he'll help me. I don't want to teach "Its your job. its not my job." I want us to work together. I do stuff for dp, he does stuff for me.
If there's a mess for me to clean up, I have the option of waiting until my show is over, doing something else first, asking dp to help so it gets done faster, having ds help (although its not faster that way. more fun though!), or even asking dp to do it altogether, etc. I'm going to give ds those options too.
I want ds to do things for me, because he knows his help is needed/appreciated. And I feel that the best way to foster that helpful, "everybody pitch in" attitude, is to be respectful, and not ever force the issue.

Becky, partner to Teague, SAHM to Keagan (7yo), Jonah (2yo)
 

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Old 01-27-2006, 06:26 PM
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Re" the Joe hitting Bill example:
I would have done something like what you write the first time but my difference would be in more teaching than telling Joe.

You write: Joe's parent then takes Joe aside and tells him that hitting people is not OK, and that it hurts them, and briefly tells Joe some ways he can *talk* to Bill and get his point across. Joe is asked if he can think of anything that might make Bill feel better (and maybe parent suggests that apologies or hugs sometimes make people feel better). Joe's parent asks Joe if he thinks he'll be able to go back and play with Bill without hurting him, or if he needs some time to calm down. "

All of this is parent imposed and does not involve the child that much. For me, a major tenet of GD is involving the child in the discipline process to insure that true growth has occurred. There is a famous quote:
Quote:
Tell me and I will forget;
Show me and I may remember;
Involve me and I will understand.
Instead of telling Joe, I would have asked him why is Bill hurt, what did Joe do that hurt Bill? I would take Joe aside and role-model some other ways to talk to Bill. I would make sure that Joe gets some practice in coming up with alternative solutions to hitting. These solutions need to come from him not directed by me. This is how these solutions become internalized and get closer to being automatic responses. I would take at least a few minutes to talk to Joe and make sure he comes up with some answers on his own so that I know he is comprehending how to solve the problem without hurting Bill. I would not worry about apologizing but I would work with Joe to help him talk to Bill to find out if he is hurt and if Bill needs any first aid or tlc. Forced apologies are meaningless. (see Deva33mommy's last post)

I would then tell Joe that he can return to playing but that I am not going to let him hurt anyone and I would make sure he comprehended that he can come to me or use words to solve problems should they arise. I would tell him that safety is an absolute and that we will go home if he cannot handle his problems safely. I would make sure to stay near Joe so I can monitor problems and be there quickly if needed. If he hit someone again, I would take Joe home telling him that he is endangering others and that it is time to go home.

I am trying to become a more and more gentle, unconditional parent. I am trying to parent with fewer and fewer consequences/punishments and more talking. But, when it comes to safety, I believe in moving in quickly and solving the problem before more injury can occur. Once we get home, there is time for more talk and more role modelling and practice that can, hopefully, lead to being able to handle future problems like this without punishment.

Any parent who stays at the park with a child who is endangering others is not only ineffective in their parenting but also hazardous to others. If Bill was my child and Joe kept hitting him, I would not be averse to walking up to Joe's parent and telling them that if Joe does not stop, I will call the police. My child has the right to play in a playground without being abused.
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Old 01-27-2006, 06:29 PM
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I wanted to add that my dd has been on the receiving end of just such a problem as the Joe V Bill issue. She was being hit by a friend last summer every time we would play together. His mom handled it just like I wrote above and by summer's end, he was completely over it and able to play with her at playgrounds without hitting They were both just 2 so it took a while to solve. I would say that the older the child, the less time it should take to solve this problem with the aforementioned solution.
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Old 01-27-2006, 07:03 PM
 
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I have a question for those who say they would focus on talking and not on consequences/punishments. How does talking work when the child who is being talked to puts their hands over their ears, makes faces, ignores, thrashes around, hits at parent trying to talk, stomping feet, ignoring and running off.... I have gone to a playgroup with a very "no discipline" mom, and when her children are aggressive or hit other children they don't seem to be in the right "place" to listen to her talking to them. She stoops down and talks calmly while they stomp and scream and shout NO, and she talks calmly for a few minutes, says listen to my words, it all sounds very nice and soothing. The child squirms and seems obviously like all he's thinking is how to get back out there playing fast. He realizes if he stands and nods he gets back out there. Mom seems satisfied, lets him go, and kid runs off like a streak still high-key and unfortunately it seems the hitting is usually repeated. I have noticed that other moms get really annoyed watching this - especially moms of the kids who have gotten hit.

My son is only 17 months old, so I am fortunately in the position where he has not done anything yet that has needed discipline. So I am still watching and forming my thoughts on the various approaches under the umbrella of "gentle" (which will certainly be my route)...
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Old 01-27-2006, 07:51 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Kincaid
I have a question for those who say they would focus on talking and not on consequences/punishments. How does talking work when the child who is being talked to puts their hands over their ears, makes faces, ignores, thrashes around, hits at parent trying to talk, stomping feet, ignoring and running off.... I have gone to a playgroup with a very "no discipline" mom, and when her children are aggressive or hit other children they don't seem to be in the right "place" to listen to her talking to them. She stoops down and talks calmly while they stomp and scream and shout NO, and she talks calmly for a few minutes, says listen to my words, it all sounds very nice and soothing. The child squirms and seems obviously like all he's thinking is how to get back out there playing fast. He realizes if he stands and nods he gets back out there. Mom seems satisfied, lets him go, and kid runs off like a streak still high-key and unfortunately it seems the hitting is usually repeated. I have noticed that other moms get really annoyed watching this - especially moms of the kids who have gotten hit.
Well, I think there are effective ways to talk to your children, and ineffective ones. I like the way boongirl and donosmommy spelled it out. I think if you're not going to punish and you still want your child to "behave", then it's important to figure out effective communication.

For example, there's this mom at our story time who is always following her toddler around (about 18 mos., I'm guessing) and saying, "Noooo, we're not going to do that. No, no, no, we're not going to do that." Her child tunes her out completely, and if she tries to pick her up, she cries, so she puts her back down and continues following her. There is no "we" in this child's mind, and she just does whatever she wants, which includes hitting. IMO, this mother needs to figure out what she wants from her child's behavior, what she can realistically expect from her child, and how to get it. She's not punishing, but I can tell she's totally frustrated all the time.

There's another mom there with a child about the same way who just sits and waits for her child to do something "wrong", and then she runs over and smacks him. And that's it. No other interaction. He's very mad, surprise, surprise, and he hits kids all the time just out of the blue. She, too, could use some lessons in effective communication.

Okay, sorry for the rant. Punishment just shouldn't be the focus, IMO. Prevention is much more effective.

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Old 01-27-2006, 08:01 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Kincaid
I have a question for those who say they would focus on talking and not on consequences/punishments. How does talking work when the child who is being talked to puts their hands over their ears, makes faces, ignores, thrashes around, hits at parent trying to talk, stomping feet, ignoring and running off.... I have gone to a playgroup with a very "no discipline" mom, and when her children are aggressive or hit other children they don't seem to be in the right "place" to listen to her talking to them. She stoops down and talks calmly while they stomp and scream and shout NO, and she talks calmly for a few minutes, says listen to my words, it all sounds very nice and soothing. The child squirms and seems obviously like all he's thinking is how to get back out there playing fast. He realizes if he stands and nods he gets back out there. Mom seems satisfied, lets him go, and kid runs off like a streak still high-key and unfortunately it seems the hitting is usually repeated.
FWIW, I would say that a big part of communicating is listening. I think that probably when a child hits (at least the initial time), there's probably a reason. Maybe it's that they want a toy, or that someone did something they don't like, or any number of other things. I think that most people like to be heard before being told what to do. So if my child is frustrated over a toy and hits another child, my child is more likely to listen to what I want him to do if I am willing to listen to my child as well as communicate my own feelings and expectations. IME, a child who is standing there with hands over ears is a child who feels they haven't been and aren't going to be heard. If I say to my child, "are you frustrated because so-and-so did such and such?" and my child says yes and possibly expands on expressing his feelings, then I can clarify what my child wants/needs ("would you like her to share her toy?") and I can go on to say "I understand. I expect you to be gentle, though, so let's find another way to handle it." and then work on teaching my child a more appropriate way to behave.

The underlying reason isn't always a big dramatic one, but I think that usually aggression is an attempt at communicating something else. And therefore, just saying "no hitting" or punishing isn't likely to solve the problem.
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Old 01-27-2006, 08:08 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Kincaid
I have a question for those who say they would focus on talking and not on consequences/punishments. How does talking work when the child who is being talked to puts their hands over their ears, makes faces, ignores, thrashes around, hits at parent trying to talk, stomping feet, ignoring and running off.... I have gone to a playgroup with a very "no discipline" mom, and when her children are aggressive or hit other children they don't seem to be in the right "place" to listen to her talking to them. She stoops down and talks calmly while they stomp and scream and shout NO, and she talks calmly for a few minutes, says listen to my words, it all sounds very nice and soothing. The child squirms and seems obviously like all he's thinking is how to get back out there playing fast. He realizes if he stands and nods he gets back out there. Mom seems satisfied, lets him go, and kid runs off like a streak still high-key and unfortunately it seems the hitting is usually repeated. I have noticed that other moms get really annoyed watching this - especially moms of the kids who have gotten hit.

My son is only 17 months old, so I am fortunately in the position where he has not done anything yet that has needed discipline. So I am still watching and forming my thoughts on the various approaches under the umbrella of "gentle" (which will certainly be my route)...
I believe this is where the difference between 'talking at' and 'talking with' is evident. In a *conversation* there is a listening, validation, consideration and a two party discussion. I found the book "How to Talk so Kids will Listen and How to Listen so Kids will Talk" to be life altering. Seriously, the ideas are that practical and essential to communications. The Center for Non-violent Communications at www.CNVC.org has information on verbalizing one's observations, sharing feelings (with *I* messages), stating one's needs, and making requests as a template for *talking with* others.

By choosing to model these types of communications, rather than give "mini-lectures", our son is more able to do the same. He will explain 'I was playing with the shovel, and Bill took it. He pushed me, so I hit him', or whatever. This allows me to hear his observations, and feelings and to restate them 'You wanted to play with the shovel. And it sounds like you were angry that Bill took the shovel to play with' and he will say 'Yes!' and then, I can discuss different ways of communicating 'You can tell Bill 'Please don't push me' or 'I was playing with the shovel'; or you can come ask for my help if you feel angry and want to hit and we will find a solution'. This creates a partnership during the communication rather than an event from which the child is wanting to escape.

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Old 01-28-2006, 04:41 AM
 
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I think someone (dharmamama?) said earlier that they don't always believe there's a deep underlying issue with everything that happens, soemtimes it's just experimenting and seein gwhat will happen, where the line is, and I believe that too. Sometimes, it just is what it is, and the less drama you attach to it as the parent (you can still be firm and serious without melodrama, shaming, or guilt), the better.
I completely agree with this!!!

My daughter is a really non-aggressive, generous little spirit so far. The few times she has been physically rough with other kids, it seems to be more to see what happens, then because she's angry at them or competing for anything or upset in any way or wanting to hurt them. She has a baby friend, one day she just kept trying to bonk her on the head with different toys, I kept telling her this wasn't right, as did the baby's father, and then I did give her an ultimatum, that the friend would go home if it kept going because this wasn't social behavior. That was it, it ended (the whole time she was in a great mood, excited to play with the baby). She's seen her dozens of times since and hasn't tried anything, I think she was just experimenting that day. I don't think there where any deep rooted issues that required a lot of words, I think talking too much would've possibly fed the behavior by feeding it a lot of focus and attention, instead of just treating it as a wrong thing to do and moving on.
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Old 01-28-2006, 11:57 AM
 
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Soundhunter, what you said really fits for me.
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Old 01-28-2006, 01:04 PM
 
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I think this is the biggest misconception about gentle discipline. Gentle discipline is just that - *gentle* DISCIPLINE.
It means that when my son is throwing a temper tantrum, I don't smack him or "beat his ass," but nor do I give in and give him the candybar he was tantruming for. It means I hold him until he is finished tantruming and reiterate WHY I said no candy - and (if appropriate) offer a healthier alternative.
It means that if he hits another child (or me), I don't hit him in return, but I hold his hands and tell him that hitting is bad and that we don't hit others and ask him to apologize. If it happens again, it means we go home because he can't be safe with other kids and they don't deserve to be hit.
So, no, GD does NOT mean "no discipline" - it means discipline without physical violence or verbal or emotional abuse.

Add: I wanted to add that I also keep my eye open to WHY my son is acting inappropriately - my little one is VERY sensitive to too much noise and crowds and I know that if we are in that sort of situation, he will become aggressive and very unruly. In those situations, I keep that in mind when addressing his behaviors - and try to keep him out of those situations! Ditto if he is tired or hungry - you have to understand WHY your child is acting the way s/he is before you respond. Helps wonders. I found the "raising your Spirited child" and "Living with the Active, Alert child" very helpful!
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Old 01-28-2006, 01:31 PM
 
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I don't think there where any deep rooted issues that required a lot of words, I think talking too much would've possibly fed the behavior by feeding it a lot of focus and attention, instead of just treating it as a wrong thing to do and moving on.
I think this is a perfect example of why listening to what's really going on with the kid is the most important aspect of all this!

Jumping right into our own assumptions and lecturing doesn't likely help in any situation.
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Old 01-28-2006, 06:08 PM
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Kincaid - if my child was putting her hands over her ears and refusing to listen to me, I would take her to another room to talk. If I still got nowhere, we would go home. Again, safety is paramount in my book. If my child is hurting another child, it has to stop or we go home.

And the reference to Nonviolent Communcation is a great one!
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Old 01-28-2006, 07:50 PM
 
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I have a question for those who say they would focus on talking and not on consequences/punishments.
I don't punish, but I don't focus on talking either. For me the focus is on teaching and guiding, while keeping my child's needs and limits in mind. I think so many problems are just avoided when you understand and anticipate your child's needs. For example, my 15mo has a difficult time with playgroups when she is tired, or if they last longer than an hour. I don't push her past her limits because that would be asking for trouble.
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How does talking work when the child who is being talked to puts their hands over their ears, makes faces, ignores, thrashes around, hits at parent trying to talk, stomping feet, ignoring and running off....
That doesn't sound like an effective teaching moment, imho I think scubamama hit the nail on the head with this. People don't listen when they don't feel heard.
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So, no, GD does NOT mean "no discipline" - it means discipline without physical violence or verbal or emotional abuse.
I think it is helpful to talk about what GD is, instead of just what it isn't. Let's face it, no parenting parenting style or philosophy would set out in principal to be abusive. So if all we say is it's not abuse that's not setting the bar very high.
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Old 01-29-2006, 04:10 AM
 
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I had a thought that I wanted to come back to this thread with after posting to another board I frequent, I guess it is more of a GD definition thing, but it was the other thread that got me thinking about this thread, so posting it here.

I'm happy with being a coercive, authoritive parent, though I really enjoy reading about other ways of doing things and incorporating bits and pieces of it all into my "tool box". But, I fall on the stricter side of GD, and other than a spell where I hand slapped three times and still kill myself over it with regret (15-18 months was a very challenging developmental stage for me, I believe I've grown enough to handle it again, but it really tested ME) it's working well for us.

My point/thought

I was responding to a thread where a woman was all frazzled because her daughter was throwing tantrums at 6 months old, which most of us with older toddlers would agree is a ridiculous notion. In an example she gave, the baby wanted to lay with a plastic bag, and she took it away from her and moved it out of her reach, and then complained on the message board about her infant throwing a "tantrum" until she took her away to look out a window. The thought had never occured to her that the baby had a legitmate right/reason to be angry, that being angry isn't the same thing as a tantrum, that any of us would be pissed (well, maybe not scubamama ) if we wanted to touch something and someone pushed it just out of our reach. She's a young first time mom so it's good she got advice about redirection when the baby is interested in something she deems to be dangerous, but there are frequent posts on this other (mainstream) parenting board where people just "discipline" when their children are expressing healthy, normal emotions Like forcing independence when a baby is clingy to teach them independence, or time outs for a child being angry etc.

However people interpret GD, I believe what puts GD'ers in the same pack whether they are strict or non coersive, is that they believe that children's emotions are legitimate, while I think non GD discipline focuses on teaching lessons regardless about how the child feels about it. I teach Emma things she doesn't always feel like learning and stop her from doing things that she wants to do, but I make it quick if that's the case, or acknowledge it, or adjust my mode of delivery for it, and I would never deprive her of hugs or affection no matter what kinds of behavior I may be trying to "correct" or coerce. But I have no problems putting my foot down, for any lurkers that think GD always equates not being firm, there are plenty of us in this camp. But, I also respect if she doesn't like what I'm making happen or not happen, all of her emotions are welcome, always have been and they matter to me and her Dad, and always will, anger included. I think even the strictest GD'ers would feel similarily, which to me, seems different than other schools of discipline thought.

Hope my tangent is relevant here. Carpal tunnel is flaming, typos will not be corrected.
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Old 01-29-2006, 04:45 AM
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However people interpret GD, I believe what puts GD'ers in the same pack whether they are strict or non coersive, is that they believe that children's emotions are legitimate, while I think non GD discipline focuses on teaching lessons regardless about how the child feels about it.
VERY GOOD POINT! (And, yes, I am yelling because it is a really good point!)





Oooooh, wait I am not supposed to say "good" anymore. (Quick glance at Alfie Kohn website and I come up with)

You did it!


(tee hee hee )
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Old 01-29-2006, 10:18 PM
 
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I'm happy with being a coercive, authoritive parent, though I really enjoy reading about other ways of doing things and incorporating bits and pieces of it all into my "tool box". But, I fall on the stricter side of GD
Yes......

Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundhunter
However people interpret GD, I believe what puts GD'ers in the same pack whether they are strict or non coersive, is that they believe that children's emotions are legitimate, while I think non GD discipline focuses on teaching lessons regardless about how the child feels about it.
Yes.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundhunter
But, I also respect if she doesn't like what I'm making happen or not happen, all of her emotions are welcome, always have been and they matter to me and her Dad, and always will, anger included. I think even the strictest GD'ers would feel similarily, which to me, seems different than other schools of discipline thought.
YES!

Soundhunter, this post really resonated with me...you put into words a lot of what I've been thinking and feeling lately as I'm reading more and more about the various "flavors" of GD there are out there - Thanks!!

Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
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Old 01-30-2006, 06:11 PM
 
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I just read this whole thread and am glad I did. My family is new to GD, and it's very difficult to learn what it means and "how" to "do" it. This thread has been helpful. It's tough to learn how to do something without the tools to do it. I suspect that some other mamas were not modeled GD as children as well, and some maybe quite the opposite.

Thanks for your insight!

4 kids under 10
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Old 01-30-2006, 09:08 PM
 
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i think i fell on the "no discipline" side of the fence for a long time...mostly because he was a pretty darn good kid and didn't need any "discipline" so now that he's doing some things that are not safe or good for him to do, he's totally ignoring all of my attempts to "discipline" him. so we're working on consistency a lot right now. i agree that every family is different.
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Old 01-31-2006, 01:19 AM
 
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Jumping in late, as usual!

First, I hope we've put to rest the notion that GD = no discipline. Ineffective parenting is a problem for sure. But it's not GD.

Second, it is entirely possible to set limits, have rules in the house, make decisions that need making (like issues of safety, etc) and still never use punishment. Whether you choose to go non-punishment is not the same thing as choosing to be GD. GD is a spectrum of parenting styles on this forum. But as another poster pointed out, when you compare us to mainstream parenting, there is so much more to unite us than to separate us. Mostly, it's just a point we quibble about for academic entertainment.

Third, the argument that kids need to be punished at home to prepare them for punishments/consequences in "real life" really doesn't hold up to scrutiny. First, kids behave entirely differently among parents and close family than they do with teachers and other "strangers" (this is why Supernanny always has the advantage). I would suggest that most kids respond well to the rules set by teachers in the school, and further, that the ones who don't are the "abnormal" ones, the ones with the problems and issues. I would bet you dollars to donuts that most GD kids have absolutely no problem in "rules and punishment" settings (and there are moms of older children in this forum who can attest to that) because there is no power-struggle scenario in their minds to start with.

Fourth, the argument that we have "laws and punishment" in our society. Well, again that doesn't hold water. Punishments, such as jails, fines, etc, are put into law for those people who don't have enough inner motivation to follow the rules. And one of the major goals of GD is to get kids to be inner motivated, not outwardly (reward and punishment) motivated. In other words, the reason I don't steal is not because I'm afraid of jailtime. I wouldn't steal even if it weren't against the law. Similarly, I go to work not because I'm afraid of being fired if I don't, but because I respect the people I work with and those who depend on me to do my job. My feeling is that using punishments and rewards as motivators at home is exactly WHY such laws need to be put in place. Because the inner motivation, combined with the emotional security required to be TRULY empathic, is missing in some people. And those aren't the GD people, I can assure you!

Fifth, the argument that GD means issues dragging on for a long time is weak. I don't know a single proponent of spanking, let alone any form of punishment, who expects it to work the first time around. So with ANY choice of action a parent has an expectation of how long such an issue will last. And, since it is impossible to perform the perfect experiment, one will never know if the issue went away becuase of how the parent handled it, or whether the child simply "grew out of" that phase of development, such that the issue is not longer a conflict. So even people who argue that *sometimes*, some form of "consequences" are necessary, can never prove that.

Finally, teaching a child social skills and behavioural skills and LIFE skills should be no different than teaching them math. Nobody would advocate punishing a child for not knowing the answer. And nobody would say "we've tried tutors and workbooks and math games and nothing is helping so obviously we need to start issuing some consequences for not knowing how to do math". Instead we would focus on giving the child basic understanding of the skills required to solve the particular problems. And if the child continued to struggle we'd assume they require a different approach, not that the child is deliberately giving the wrong answer. And that "consequences" are the only way to get the child to answer correctly. So it is with discipline. IMHO.

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Old 10-07-2007, 03:20 PM
 
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thanks for bumping this thread. its has been helpful for me to read through!
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Old 10-07-2007, 03:28 PM
 
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After reading some posts and trying to figure out exactly what GD means i feel like it = no discipline. GD is a wonderful theory but from what i have seen when parents use this form of "discipline" it usually means their kids run the show and arnt respectful of any adult or authority figure. I really think its for the chilrens own good that they have consistancy, rules, and real discipline (none of which needs to be done with spanking, name calling, or hurting our child emotionally). Can GD be all those things too?? Does GD mean no concequences, no punishment for bad behavior?? what wrong with taking away privilages??
I have one child, who is four and a half, and he is an amazingly nicely behaved child. I was feeling horrible about myself, and my sister pointed out to me that my son is so pleasant to be near. He knows how to speak to adults and to children alike with sensitivity. He is a four year old, you know, with all that implies, but he is just right with the whole balance of respect for others and seeing to his own needs.

Some of that is just him. Some of it is that we don't use punishment. We are really pre-emptive about situations that could go wrong for him. We don't make him go on four errands, or stay up super-late at night. We don't bring him into a huge crowd of people with no escape and expect him to act like an adult. We always have lots of opportunities for quiet talking and reflection. Of course that's all pretty easy since there is one of him and two of us--it might be tougher with a rowdier kid, or two kids.

Divorced mom of one awesome boy born 2-3-2003.
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Old 10-07-2007, 03:58 PM
 
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Of course that's all pretty easy since there is one of him and two of us--it might be tougher with a rowdier kid, or two kids.


Yeah, just a little. When we just had Ramona, tailoring life to suit her needs was remarkably easy. We have three kids now, two of which are probably about 3 months apart in age, and I find that the "avoiding situations that could go wrong" thing is sometimes impossible. While we still try to be pre-emptive, we have to do a lot more "making lemonade from lemons" than we used to.

My kids are delightful with other people. They are well-mannered, kind, funny, interesting, etc. I am grateful for that and I really think that it shows a lot about who they really are.

I frequently wish that my kids were as wonderful with us as they are with other people.

My younger two are best friends, but they are also very interested in individuating themselves right now, and we are definitely in a "You say tomato? Well, I'll say tomahto just to be different!" phase right now. It tests the patience and logistics of many a situation.

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