When natural consequenses have negative consequences for the rest of the family - Page 3 - Mothering Forums
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#61 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 03:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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wednesday -- you're in a similar situation, just every day. what you're describing is definitely worse than what my older DD does. with her it's that sometimes she'll say she wants an apple, i'll cut it up and she'll eat 2 slices. if i don't want to eat the rest of the apple it gets wasted. she won't eat it once it browns. sometimes she'll eat the whole apple and ask for another one. i just never know.

it's a catch-22. if you replace the wasted food you validate the behavior. if you refuse to replace the food you have a hungry grumpy kid on your hands and the grumpy-ness is only going to get worse.

that's why i posted my original question. even though i realize some of the problem was just my preception of the situation, the end result was that i was stuck having to make that decision. prevention is great, but like you said, you're not omnicient and can't predict every little reaction your kid is going to have.
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#62 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 03:14 PM
 
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I either make french cinnamon toast or cinnamon rolls.

I make the bread dough from scratch. For french cinnamon toast just bake in bread loaf pans, slice, cover in egg batter, cook in pan, dust with cinnamon and sugar or syrup.

For cinnamon rolls, I make a very damp bread dough. Let rise just once. Roll out into rectangle, spread lightly with softened butter, and cover with cinnamon. Roll up lengthwise. Cut into rounds, and put in well-buttered 8x8 pan (you want the rolls to puff up into one large roll, then break apart--much softer this way.)

For icing I use:

Sifted powdered sugar with just enough water to consistency. Then add several spoonfuls of softened cream cheese. Blend until smooth. Makes the BEST icing!

Needless to say, I definitely would not be willing to go through all of that again if a child trashed it.

....I'd probably be digging through the garbage can to rescue the roll.....
Now that is some fancy cinnamon toast!! I do the simple kind...but I don't have the sugar and cinnamon mixed...but as a pp said, I should prolly put it together so I may continue to be GD...

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#63 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 03:45 PM
 
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It still boils down to--either I replace the food to stop the screaming...
Never, never, never.

I have a hard and fast rule: the minute dd's voice starts rising and turns angry, then she does NOT get whatever it is that she's wanting. Period. Because I've been unwaveringly consistent about this, she doesn't even bother tantruming, because she knows that doesn't work. Now, with Papa? Yup, she'll carry on like a banshee, because she knows he'll give in.

I think it's important to be kind and flexible in terms of carrying this out. For instance, I wouldn't say 'no - you get nothing to eat now'. But I would not budge out of my chair in the first place until she calms down and tells me in a nice voice what it is that she wants. Often, once we are able to communicate in a calm way, she'll be more open to what I'm trying to say, and I also try to be flexible about what she's trying to say. So if she wanted new toast because this piece had 'germs', I would talk to her about why that shouldn't be a worry to her, but then - so long as she remained calm and reasonable - I'd still offer to make her a new piece if she wanted.

But nuthin', no way, no how ever happens when she's being demanding or hysterical.
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#64 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 04:02 PM
 
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.

I have a hard and fast rule: the minute dd's voice starts rising and turns angry, then she does NOT get whatever it is that she's wanting. Period. Because I've been unwaveringly consistent about this, she doesn't even bother tantruming, because she knows that doesn't work. Now, with Papa? Yup, she'll carry on like a banshee, because she knows he'll give in.
That's interesting, because I have a completely different approach with ds, and it basically has the same result. (well, both dp and I respond the same, and he doesn't scream or tantrum with either of us. Some whining, but not too much anymore.).
I do what he wants (if it's something that I'd be agreeable to in a calm situation), but tell him that speaking in a calm tone of voice will get him what he wants just as well, and that I'd prefer to hear that.

Who knows. Different personalities? probably. But also there is more than one path to travel to the same place.

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#65 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 04:42 PM
 
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Who knows. Different personalities? probably. But also there is more than one path to travel to the same place.
Very true! All you can do is watch your child and learn what works for them.

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Doesn't work. He refuses to eat anything that's fallen (or been thrown) on the floor. Screams for a different one.
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It still boils down to--either I replace the food to stop the screaming, thereby validating that his behavior is acceptable, or I deny him any more food and I guarantee that I continue to have an angry, grumpy, hungry kid on my hands.
When my ds was 3 he wouldn't have understood how to make a better choice if I gave him what he wanted when he screamed. He was a pretty direct child. If he screamed and I gave him something, then screaming worked.

No amount of explaining afterwards why he shouldn't scream to get what he wanted would have made sense to him at 3 years old. I *did* give him what he wanted if he screamed, and that was that. Life was happening "Right Now" at 3. Either screaming worked or did not work~based on the immediate sequence of events after he screamed. He could not motivate himself by after-the-fact conversations with me. That was *my* idealization of him. But it wasn't his reality.

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#66 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 06:18 PM
 
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if you replace the wasted food you validate the behavior. if you refuse to replace the food you have a hungry grumpy kid on your hands and the grumpy-ness is only going to get worse..
Here's what I wonder, bearing in mind that every child is different, and that the same child will become different at different ages and stages.

Usually if dd is grumpy about some trivial thing - like food, it's not at all about the thing. It's about something else entirely, that she's having trouble verbalizing or even recognizing. Nearly always, it's something to do with needing more attention, or needing to feel more secure in some way.

Sometimes I can even say it outloud for her, and just the realization of it between the two of us can change everything. For example, she was getting fussy and grumpy about a computer game she was playing while I worked at home. I kept trying to help her out and reassure her but she was only getting more irritable. Finally I set my work down, pulled her into my lap, looked her in the eye and said "Do you just need ALL of the attention?" She looked kind of surprised, broke out a big smile and nodded. Then the two of us laughed and played. After a few minutes, she was able to return to her game.

So I wonder if the reason some of these tantrums are so incosolable is because the answer isn't more toast or bananas cut a certain way. Maybe it's more along the lines of sweeping up dc in your arms and saying "What should we do together today, you and I?"
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#67 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 09:06 PM
 
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Never, never, never.

I have a hard and fast rule: the minute dd's voice starts rising and turns angry, then she does NOT get whatever it is that she's wanting. Period. Because I've been unwaveringly consistent about this, she doesn't even bother tantruming, because she knows that doesn't work.
:

My experience is probably not that relevant to this thread. DS tantrumed for three hours last night. He threw himself on the floor, against walls, screamed, tore at me and DH, screamed, ripped off his clothes, and screamed some more. It took going for a ride in the car at midnight to finally settle him down. We are told by folks knowledgeable about childhood development that his behavior is well outside the scope of typical. We are trying to get help for him. For us.

I just thought maybe someone would have some new suggestions to address the particular scenario in this thread, other than "just give him a few bites" or "don't reward the screaming." Thanks anyway.
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#68 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 09:20 PM
 
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[QUOTE=wednesday;6651552What I have a problem with, is DS deciding on a whim that the banana I sliced up for him is not acceptable because I served it in a bowl instead of on a plate, throwing the bowl across the room, and screaming, "More! More More! I need another one! I need another banana!" Etc. I mean on what planet is this even remotely acceptable behavior? I feel like if I give him another banana at that point, I have firmly acknowledged that it is totally okay for him to act this way. WHICH IT IS SO NOT. If I don't replace the banana, then I get an hour of screaming. Both options suck.[/QUOTE]

I am ok with ds deciding not to eat one food, and wanting me to fix him something else. That's cool, I can do that. But what really bothers me is when he HAS a banana (or whatever), and will NOT eat it, but insists that he needs a *different* banana.
I just say no (unless it's something that I'd like to eat anyways). But that's usually the end of it for us. So I don't really have any advice for you.
Just wanted to say that I am soooooo easygoing with food, but that particular issue just irritates the heck out of me, too. lol

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#69 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 09:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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wednesday -- i think your experience is definitely outside of typical. my own older DD is outside of typical too. for awhile i thought she might have a sensory issue (she touches people and things more than normal, she smells things, is still sucking her fingers at 4.5, chews on and bites her clothes, toys, etc.). it affects her relationships with other people as well as our ability to participate in activities meant for kids her age because she does things like smelling, sucking, biting. it was bad enough i brought it up with our doctor. she told me that it sounds like DD1 is "normal" but falls on a far end of the bell curve. she explained we'd just have to work harder to teach her what's appropriate.

over the past six months i've seen an improvement in all of those behaviors. but just now she was chewing on the sleeve of a brand new dress i bought her and spent $20 because it was just so darn cute and she loved it. she was chewing the sleeve!!!!! that has nothing to do with this thread, though...

i'm sorry about your DS's behavior. i hope you can find some help. as exhausting as it is for me to deal with my DD1's food wasting and her freak outs i think they're not as bad as what you've got going on. good luck finding some help.
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#70 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 10:08 PM
 
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I just thought maybe someone would have some new suggestions to address the particular scenario in this thread, other than "just give him a few bites" or "don't reward the screaming." Thanks anyway.
Sorry things are so rough right now.

It wasn't clear to me in your posts if you had consistently tried another approach. I thought you were saying that until now, you gave him what he wanted so he wouldn't scream. It's hard to know from a post, kwim? On the one hand I'd say "If this was the first night you didn't give him what he wanted, it wouldn't surprise me that he screamed for three hours and threw a violent fit in protest. He doesn't want to accept this new limit". On the other hand maybe you are saying you *have* consistently refused to reward screaming, and yet he is throwing 3 hour violent tantrums anyway. I'm sorry, it's hard to know what a person means at times. I'm still not clear on it, but I'm sending you supportive vibes

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#71 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 10:31 PM
 
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No, it's been a consistent limit, which is what made this thread particularly interesting to me. Because I have felt at times that being consistent with the limit was very much in conflict with trying to get his physical needs met so that his behavior did not continue to be driven by discomfort. In my experience it really can become a downward spiral.

So--even though in the scenario described I would not get him another banana in response to his screaming demands--if I felt the underlying issue was hunger, I might wait until there's somewhat of a lull in the screaming, and casually hand him some crackers. That's the best I've come up with to try to address the real problem, without overtly rewarding the unacceptable behavior. Even that response only developed after many many months of such incidents, since it seemed like calmly and consistently ignoring the tantrums sure as heck wasn't "working."

P.S. to aprildawn -- sorry for hijacking your thread
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#72 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 10:48 PM
 
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Have you tried an elimination diet?

Mother is the word for God on the hearts and lips of all little children--William Makepeace Thackeray
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#73 of 85 Old 11-30-2006, 11:02 PM
 
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Have you tried an elimination diet?
He's been off dairy for a couple years, since we figured out very early on that dairy consumption made him completely mental. We recently expanded that to wheat, soy, corn, eggs, and preservatives/dyes. And we finally are getting some help with having actual allergy testing done to see if that reveals any less common allergens. Since obviously I can't just feed him NOTHING and see what happens, kwim? I do feel very strongly that he has major food issues but it hasn't been until recently that others outside our family have started to acknowledge that his behavior is extreme, and maybe just maybe it is not simply the result of totally incompetent parenting.
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#74 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 12:16 AM
 
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Here's how I make cinnamon toast. (Also happens to be low-fat, but who cares about that ) It's also the Very Quick version.

Toast slice of bread.
Smear honey on bread.
Sprinkle cinnamon on honey and bread.

Yum!

It makes me crazy when my son (almost 4) wastes food too--for me it's like flushing money down the toilet. I'm incredibly careful about not wasting food. The only giving small portions thing has really worked for me. He would pour the whole box of cereal and whole carton of milk in his bowl if I let him, so I set up a little assembly line for him, with one measuring cup of cereal, a little pitcher of milk, another little cup of banana slices, and bowl and spoon. He makes his own, which he really loves.

That said, I just made a very nice loaf of bread which included a couple of his leftover bowls of cereal that I saved for this purpose in the fridge...oh well. (I *really* don't want to waste food!)
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#75 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 12:35 AM
 
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i thought she might have a sensory issue (she touches people and things more than normal, she smells things, is still sucking her fingers at 4.5, chews on and bites her clothes, toys, etc.).
My DD is the same age and is VERY oral as well. She is always chewing on her hair, her hands, something . . .I did wean her when she was around 2.5 yrs. I am almost certain that she would have wanted to continue nursing (at this age) had I not done that . . .but I don't regret that I weaned her either (I just couldn't do it anymore). I WISH I could have been the kind of person to keep going, though.

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#76 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 12:37 AM
 
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it hasn't been until recently that others outside our family have started to acknowledge that his behavior is extreme, and maybe just maybe it is not simply the result of totally incompetent parenting.


I'm sorry you're going through this.

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#77 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 07:14 AM
 
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He's been off dairy for a couple years, since we figured out very early on that dairy consumption made him completely mental. We recently expanded that to wheat, soy, corn, eggs, and preservatives/dyes. And we finally are getting some help with having actual allergy testing done to see if that reveals any less common allergens. Since obviously I can't just feed him NOTHING and see what happens, kwim? I do feel very strongly that he has major food issues but it hasn't been until recently that others outside our family have started to acknowledge that his behavior is extreme, and maybe just maybe it is not simply the result of totally incompetent parenting.
wednesday, when I first read your post about the three hour tantrums, I immediately thought *food allergies.* If you think it's food---my money is on your instincts. My oldest has a dairy allergy, and he would absolutely rage....scary rage for hours . Break doors out of their doorframes at age four I felt like an incompetent, horrible mother. I also felt at the end of my rope---like I wasn't going to be able to keep it together for another day.

When we eliminated all dairy, we also began Feingold and eliminated ALL preservatives, colors, and flavors. Within about a week or so, I had an amazingly different child. It was stunning how his behavior changed. You don't have to feed ds nothing to do the elimination diet, though---have you ever read, Is This Your Child by Dr. Doris Rapp? If not, get it She has so much info in there about elim. diets, etc. BTW, are y'all doing NO dairy? We had to eliminate ALL dairy.

I'd love to talk more w/you about this....we could possibly start a thread in the Allergy subforum or heck, even in here I also know WuWei's child has dairy issues and she has posted many helpful links---you might want to PM her and ask or do a search in here about food and tantrums.

Hang in, mama

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#78 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 07:44 AM
 
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Since she is 4.5, I would have told her should could have more cin toast, if she made it herself (supervised, of course).

Or, right after her sis took a bite of her toast, I would have cut that crust off. Or I would have switched pieces of toast, since it sounds like her sis hadn't touched hers yet.

I do think it turned into power struggle. But, sometimes we go there without meaning to. I know I sure do. The best thing to do is to reflect after the fact, like you are doing and try to think of alternatives if similar situations come up again.
: That's what I'd do... we try to diffuse the situation before anyone gets really upset (and with my dd there are definately signs if she is heading towards a meltdown) and if our compromise offer isn't working then I usually go along with her, but have her help 'fix' the situation... for us the important thing is to try and work with dd (who is 4.5) before she gets very upset about something that isn't really worth a meltdown. I would have offered to cut off the contaminated toast, trade with her sibling, then help her make a fresh piece. It is easier to do this before anyone gets really upset - that way your child will feel like you are validating her feelings, and you don't feel like you are being, somehow, manipulated or caving.

It is, of course, easy to analyze this type of situation when you aren't going through it at the time... good for you for thinking about how to make this type of thing better next time
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#79 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 09:20 AM
 
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have you ever read, Is This Your Child by Dr. Doris Rapp? If not, get it She has so much info in there about elim. diets, etc. BTW, are y'all doing NO dairy? We had to eliminate ALL dairy.
Thanks for the book recommendation. I just checked and my library has it so I will go check it out today. Yes, we've eliminated every trace of dairy and wheat--although we were confused at first about oats so he had those some, but no more.

I have started a couple threads about what we're dealing with in the Special Needs forum--this is the most recent one.
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#80 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 12:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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P.S. to aprildawn -- sorry for hijacking your thread
Definitely no hijacking on your part. I feel like it was totally related to the conversation. Plus, it's good to hear from all the other moms that there are kids with similar issues out there. I find some small comfort in that. Good luck to you.
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#81 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 12:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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: That's what I'd do... we try to diffuse the situation before anyone gets really upset (and with my dd there are definately signs if she is heading towards a meltdown) and if our compromise offer isn't working then I usually go along with her, but have her help 'fix' the situation... for us the important thing is to try and work with dd (who is 4.5) before she gets very upset about something that isn't really worth a meltdown. I would have offered to cut off the contaminated toast, trade with her sibling, then help her make a fresh piece. It is easier to do this before anyone gets really upset - that way your child will feel like you are validating her feelings, and you don't feel like you are being, somehow, manipulated or caving.

It is, of course, easy to analyze this type of situation when you aren't going through it at the time... good for you for thinking about how to make this type of thing better next time

Yeah. The whole head it off before things escalate is something I try too. I actually feel proud of myself when I discover a way to head off freak outs and tantrums. But sometimes these sorts of behaviors just seem to come out of the blue! And, like I realized earlier in the thread, I just didn't *feel like* making a new piece of toast, so I tried to convince her to eat the tainted toast which caused the whole tantrum. It came down to the fact that I just didn't feel like it and she wouldn't accept DH's version of the toast. As a mom we have to do so many things we don't feel like doing (most recently cleaning puke up all over my house since DD2 is sick with a tummy thing : ) that every once in awhile I run out of steam, refuse to do whatever it is I need to be doing, and it causes a big upset!

That brings us back to the catch-22. Do you take care of your own feelings? If I really just don't want to make the toast maybe it's because I need some recharging time, even if it's just 15 minutes to drink my coffee. Or do I continue to serve my family when I'm out of gas to head off potential tantrums? What are the costs and benefits of each choice? It's tough.
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#82 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 12:56 PM
 
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I am in flame-gear too

I see nothing wrong with how you handled it.

only i think you handled it better than me -- i would NOT have made her most toast, nor given her a CHOISE on the 2nd breaskfast -- i would have put her at the table and giving her something, if she refused that, she would have waited untill i was ready to make either morning snack or lunch for the whole family.

Waesting food is not ok, nor is irgonoring direct instructions from theparent, nor is -- imo -- treating her younger sib that way.

and -- again imo --if mommy already made toast once, and there is nothign wrong with it, then momma should not feel bad about "not wanting to make more" you are a momma not a salve, maid or personal chef --you take care of a family as a whole, you do not need to cater to every whim. You didn't feel like making more, the toast was fine, so there is no reason to feel bad. DD made a choice to behave as she knows she is not to and to activly not listen when throwing out food.

JMO

you did fine, and you don't need to feel bad about not wanting to do extra work.

As I said -- you were a lot mroe GD than I would have been.

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#83 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 03:01 PM
 
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I don't usually jump into threads that have gone on for this long! But this time I really want to. I did sit and read every post first though. I am with Heart on this one (as usual) and would not have made another peice of toast.

FWIW, though something you might want to work on incorporating into your life for future incidents though, April - we try to get our kids to sort of take a "pause" before following through with drastic actions -- and talk it out. So, for instance, on her way to the trash can with the toast, I would have intercepted and said, "Hold it. Pause for 2 minutes and listen. I'm only using words, and then when we unpause -- you can still throw it away if you still choose to." That gives a chance to disscuss more reasonable possiblities (i.e. -- trade toasts with Daddy, etc.) This works for us with our kids, in highly charged moments, but it took some time and practise to become a real tool in the toolkit, kwim? The kids had to get used to it, and learn to trust that its in their best interest.

Also -- occasional "do overs" are helpful too. I don't like to do a lot of do-overs, because they will take over your life. But in this situation, later in the day when you wanted an "out," I might have just said, "You know dd -- our morning got off to a lousy start. Let's start all over." Maybe. I'm iffy on this one though!

As for the chewing on the clothing thing -- I had to throw away all my older son's shirts from his 4th year of life. Normally, clothes get handed down. But those just got eaten! LOL. We mostly solved it though, by making very sturdy bead necklaces together that he could wear and chew on instead. I would prompt him to use his beads whenever his sleeve or collar was heading toward his mouth! (Satin ribbon can be used for the necklaces, with rubber, plastic, or wooden beads -- depending on what you are comfortable with.) Beads are good for the figits too, and nail biting, and even excessive penis touching in public places (not that you'll encounter that!)
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#84 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 04:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by mamaduck View Post
I don't usually jump into threads that have gone on for this long! April - we try to get our kids to sort of take a "pause" before following through with drastic actions -- and talk it out. So, for instance, on her way to the trash can with the toast, I would have intercepted and said, "Hold it. Pause for 2 minutes and listen. I'm only using words, and then when we unpause -- you can still throw it away if you still choose to."

Also -- occasional "do overs" are helpful too. I don't like to do a lot of do-overs, because they will take over your life. But in this situation, later in the day when you wanted an "out," I might have just said, "You know dd -- our morning got off to a lousy start. Let's start all over." Maybe. I'm iffy on this one though!

As for the chewing on the clothing thing -- I had to throw away all my older son's shirts from his 4th year of life. Normally, clothes get handed down. But those just got eaten! LOL. We mostly solved it though, by making very sturdy bead necklaces together that he could wear and chew on instead. I would prompt him to use his beads whenever his sleeve or collar was heading toward his mouth! (Satin ribbon can be used for the necklaces, with rubber, plastic, or wooden beads -- depending on what you are comfortable with.) Beads are good for the figits too, and nail biting, and even excessive penis touching in public places (not that you'll encounter that!)
I can't believe this thread is as long as it is, either! Definitely the longest one I've ever started. Obviously I hit on something many of us experience as we try to take everything into account before and when we discipline our kids. For me it's one of the key part of GD, to know the child, prevent problems in the first place, and respond to problem behavior in a way that helps your child grow in an ability to use self discipline. Which leads me to...

I love the idea of a pause. It's exactly what I wanted to happen, but my approach was way off. DH and I were yelling "STOP!! Don't throw it away!!" so we could be heard above her own screaming. So, everyone in the house is yelling. Crazy. If we had a "code word" or a way to communicate that we're calling a time out (in the sporting sense of the word) before we make any rash decisions, I think she'd be very responsive to that.

We have do-overs a lot. Mostly when she uses a nasty tone of voice with me. She'll say, "OK, Mommy. Let's start over." sometimes i let her, sometimes i tell her that it's not ok to start over. it just depends on the situation.

As for the chewing -- I bought a package of straws and I give her one when I notice she's chewing a lot. A bead necklace is a great idea too. She's super sensory/oral/touching/kinestetic.
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#85 of 85 Old 12-01-2006, 04:49 PM
 
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We do lots of "rewinds" and "pauses"...we're kind of like a VCR around here And with my older two, we do deep breaths. I love it when I see my almost 7 yo calming himself down with deep breathing They do eventually start getting it

It can also be particularly helpful to be playful about stuff---like I'll do something in reverse or speedy (fast forward)...Sometimes it really helps to be playful and joke about things to help de-escalate.

I have retired from administration work, so if you have a question about anything MDC-related, please contact Cynthia Mosher. Thanks!
 
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