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Discussion Starter #1
I want to know what you guys think? Am I threatening DS and if you think so, give me some better options.<br><br>
DS (2.5yo) wants his scooter upstairs. But then he likes to run over our feet or bang into furniture. I say, "It hurts when you hit my feet, please don't do that". He does it again. "DS it really hurts and I don't like it". Does it again. "DS if you are having a hard time controlling yourself, I can help you bring it outside for now." He says "I don't want it outside", but then hits me again. Eventually after this back and forth, I tell him I am bringing it outside for now because I see he's having a hard time controlling himself... he can have it later and take it away from him. Usually ends in his crying.<br><br>
We bought a mobile for him that has planets etc. But he wants to pull them and makes me think it might not have been age appropriate. I tell him, "DS if you pull them they can break or you might get hurt. The mobile is a pretty thing to look at, not to pull." He does it anyways, goes back and forth etc, until I tell him that if he's having a hard time controlling himself I can put it away until he's a little older.<br><br>
I'm trying to put DD (5 weeks old) to sleep and DS is screaming. I ask DS to use his quiet voice so the baby doesn't wake up and so we can play and he screams louder. Then I tell him I will take the baby in the other room to put her to sleep if he is having a hard time not screaming. Eventually, I pick the baby up and go in another room to get her to sleep sometimes, which he hates.<br><br>
So there's a recurring theme of me saying I will move something or take it away because of his lack of impulse control. But I'm starting to feel like I'm threatening. What do you think? How would you handle these types of situations?
 

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Personally, I would probably do the same thing.<br><br>
With the scooter ask him to go into another room so he cannot hit you with it or run over your feet. I usually try to relate it to DS, 'would you like it if someone kept running over your feet? it hurts.'<br><br>
With the mobile, would you be really upset if it did break? My DS is a little older, but if I keep telling him to be careful because that something might break and he does not listen, I let him break it(within reason). Then it's out of the house. He may be upset that it is broken, but that was the natural consequence of his actions.<br><br>
When you are putting the baby down for a nap could you occupy DS with something? Mine LOVED, and still does, to play in a sink full of water with some toys in the bathroom. Or something along those lines. If he does not want to and continues to scream, I would go into another room as well.<br><br>
These tactics may not be what others would do(and am interested to know) but I still believe hat there is a line somewhere. Kids test the limits to see what they can get away with. We are here to guide them and if that means removing yourself, them, or an item, I believe that is OK.
 

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I think there's a difference between "If you run into me with that scooter ONE MORE TIME then I'm taking it away and putting it OUTSIDE!" and "I'm sorry, but I can't let you continue to hit me with the stroller. It hurts momma. If you can't stop hitting me, I'm going to have to take it away".<br><br>
My son is much younger, but when he's doing something that is negatively impacting someone else (let's say, hitting me in the face with a hairbrush) I will first tell him to stop AND give him an alternative ("Stop! That hurts momma. Hit the floor with the brush, hitting the floor is okay!"). If he does it again, I repeat what I already said and add something like "If you hit me again, I have to take it away from you." And if he does, I do.<br><br>
I try to always attempt redirection/distraction before laying down a consequence, but after the third repetition of the behavior I usually do resort to some sort of logical consequence (hit momma with the brush and the brush goes away, pull momma's hair and momma hold you right now, etc).
 

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All three of these situations are great examples of how to prevent a conflict.<br><br>
1) Just don't allow him to bring the scooter inside/upstairs. He is showing you that he can't have it there without hurting you.<br>
2) Take the mobile down when he's not there and put it away and, if he asks, tell him you made the mistake of giving him a mobile meant for an older kid. Maybe consider replacing it with something more age appropriate.<br>
3) Always occupy him and put the baby to bed in another room.<br><br>
HTH.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies. I do my best to avoid conflict but we pass the scooter every time we come home because it's in the garage and I don't want to get rid of it because he loves it so much. Also about putting the baby to bed in another room, he always follows me and I feel bad and also not comfortable with closing the door behind me. He's still too young, IMO to leave in the rest of the apartment without me.<br>
I do find myself getting irritated and I think that's why I was questioning if I was threatening but I agree there is a difference in the way you say it.
 

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Can you put the scooter somewhere else? I'd put it away for a few weeks.<br><br>
As for screaming/being loud with the baby---oooooh goodness. My niece did this when I babysat, and both of my girls have done it with the baby. It makes me crazy, and I think that's why they do it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> My best advice is to NEVER announce when you are going to put her down . . .and I personally close the baby gate so DD can't follow me upstairs.
 

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Have you tried including him in finding a solution? So, "You want the scooter inside. I won't allow you to keep hitting me with it. Can you think of a solution?" Who knows- he might surprise you!<br><br>
I also found that outright telling ds "It seems like you're having a hard time. Do you want me to take away the temptation?" seemed to be helpful, and ds would agree with me.<br><br>
With the mobile, if it were my ds, I'd put it away unbeknownst to him. If he asked about it, I'd get it back out and try to think of another solution. It would most likely be forgotten, and I'd bring it out when he was a bit older, so he could actually enjoy it, kwim?
 

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Hmm.....I just don't like the word 'if' in there. It sounds so.....conditional, like a threat. IF you are having a hard time controlling yourself, I will put it outside. Why not just an observation of the situation? - <i>It seems you are having a hard time controlling yourself right now.</i> - followed by a solution - <i>the scooter needs to go outside. We'll try again with it later.</i><br><br>
I think it does seem sort of threatening with the 'if' in there, and......I don't know, I can't put my finger on it. I find that my kids are more attentive to my words when I'm scripting the actions instead of that 'last chance' feeling of what <i>could</i> happen, you know?
 

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I also don't really like the 'ifs'. But then again - I was a kid who on purpose waited until I got the 'if' before I did what I was supposed to do.<br><br>
I think that kids know alot more than what we give them credit for.<br><br>
With the scooter - do you think that your child has the physical control to not bang into people and furniture? If the answer is 'no' - then I would tell him that it just can't come upstairs. If you think he can. Then how about telling him what's allowed - "You can ride in in the hall and around the kitchen - but you can't bang into people and things". Then if he bangs into people and things - I would remind him that he should be more carefull. And after that - just say something like "today it's not working - the scooter needs to go back down now. Would you like to take it there - or should I? We can try again on another day" or maybe "I'm sorry - I thought you were old enough that this would work - but I think we shuld wait a couple months. It seems like it's too hard for you to not bang into things".<br><br>
We aren't at this point with our DD yet. But I remember that I didn't take my dad seriously for anything until after he said '2'... (He would count to 3 - sometimes he would say 2.5, 2.75...) My sisteres both jumped when he said '1' and he was confused becuase I didn't. But I knew that I didn't need to behave until he'd gotten to 2. Nothing ever happened until he got there - and he wasn't really willing to reach 3. So - in many ways it was just an empty threat.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>ktmama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9926765"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">All three of these situations are great examples of how to prevent a conflict.<br><br>
1) Just don't allow him to bring the scooter inside/upstairs. He is showing you that he can't have it there without hurting you.<br>
2) Take the mobile down when he's not there and put it away and, if he asks, tell him you made the mistake of giving him a mobile meant for an older kid. Maybe consider replacing it with something more age appropriate.<br>
3) Always occupy him and put the baby to bed in another room.<br><br>
HTH.</div>
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I agree. By allowing the scooter upstairs when you already know it will end up in frustration for both of you I think you're setting yourself up.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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I don't think there is anything inherently wrong in telling your child if... then... I think it does help a child to learn the effect of their actions. However if it is starting to feel like threatening to you, there is probably a more positive way to handle it. In the first situation you could say "it seems difficult for you to ride the scooter without hurting me would you like to do _____ (fill in blank with any other fun activity like playdough, painting, building a fort with couch cushions, etc.) instead?" If he says "no" just repeat that it isn't okay for him to hurt you and let him know that he needs to choose a different activity. This way the focus isn't on what he's doing wrong or the negative consequence he is experiencing its just allowing him to play something else that doesn't involve hitting you. You're working with him rather than against him.<br><br>
In the second scenario I would do something similar in the immediate situation. Suggest another activity and help him move on to something else. Then after he is focused on something go and put the mobile away until he is older and has developed better impulse control.<br><br>
As far a the situation with putting the baby to sleep, when he starts getting loud I would remind him that the baby needs quiet to fall asleep, then offer something like "would you like me to put a video on for you while I put the baby to sleep?" Or offer to set up crayons and paper for him or maybe keep a special toy that is only for dd's nap times. Make it a special fun time for him. If its the only time he gets to watch a video he may end up really looking forward to dd's nap time. That would be a much better outcome then him resenting her because you always leave him to put her to sleep. Also as soon as she falls asleep come out and give him special cuddles. You can even point out that since he was so quiet she fell asleep easily and now you have time to spend just with him.<br><br>
I think if you focus on offering alternatives rather than enforcing consequences it may feel less like threatening and more like problem solving. Also the stress of a new baby in the family can really weigh on a child, so keeping things as positive as possible is probably extra important right now.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Deva33mommy</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9979867"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Have you tried including him in finding a solution? So, "You want the scooter inside. I won't allow you to keep hitting me with it. Can you think of a solution?" Who knows- he might surprise you!</div>
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You don't know how much I wish I could actually implement this but it feels like it never works in my house. I aspire to live our lives in a CL way but it feels like things like this go over his head. I feel like it might take some time before he can understand this. I actually have read a lot of your posts and always am so in awe how you've done this with a young toddler.<br><br>
I was thinking about it today, and I think more than the phrasing of what I say, it's how much I have to say itthat makes me feel like I'm threatening. It's come to a point that I have to use a phrase even like, "It looks like you are having a hard time with X. Let's take Y out the picture for a while." like 15 times a day. I try to distract, I try to find an adequate replacement etc, but 80% of the time it doesn't work, and I have to resort to taking whatever is causing the problem out of the way.<br>
For example, everytime I take DS and my newborn, DD, out I bring DD and DS downstairs, leave DD inside by the door and get DS in first (because he loves to run away and I don't want him to run all the way in the house while I already have DD in the car). So I bring him in, and usually DD starts to cry when she first gets in the carseat... I need to get the car moving quick so she'll be ok, or she reaches the point of no return and I have to pull over, nurse etc. So I try to make it as playful as possible but DS is busy taking in the world (which I love about his age) but I don't have the time for it because DD is crying in the house. So I ask DS to please hop up quick, we'll have some snacks, or we're going xyz which will be so fun etc etc, and that I don't want DD to cry too much or I'll need to get back in the house and take care of her.<br>
He won't listen, DD cries louder and louder. It always ends up coming down to, "DS, I need to take care of DD also. Please get in the carseat, or I'll need to go back inside with both of you for a while." DS immediately gets in.<br>
But I don't want it to be like this. Why is it always about taking something away from him. I remember a time that wasn't like this but nowadays it's like this all day. I even try to let go of a lot of things (I think) but I'm not ok with him breaking stuff or hurting me or infringing on DD's rights etc.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> I am getting a lot of the same situations with my ds2 & dd. He just turned five, she's four months. She takes up a lot of my time and energy and he isn't handling it very well, although things are a little better now than they were a couple months ago.<br><br>
There's no reason you can't have a rule. There's no reason you can't say, "Scooters stay outside". The way I figure it, in some cases there's going to be a tantrum no matter which way you play it (let the scooter in, he gets into trouble with it or; leave scooter outside, he gets mad about that) so you as the adult have to take it to the side of safety (not really safe to ride scooter inside, hurts people) and stay calm when the tantrum hits.<br><br>
At that age ds2 really responded to validation and reflective listening, knowing I understood was so helpful that it often defused the situation. Now it works less, but he's older and I have to learn new stuff to keep up with him, lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I have tried to do reflective listening but what do you say after they acknowledge that they are feeling a certain way? Like I'll saying to crying DS, "You really wanted X huh?" and he will say yes and continue to cry. What do you say at that point, or do u just let them keep crying in your arms? I used to after trying to vocalize his feelings, explain to him why I'm feeling a certain way, but that just makes him angry at that moment so I stopped.
 

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I agree with removing the scooter for a while.<br><br>
I am kind of new to Gentle Discipline. However, it seems like you may be waiting too long to take the scooter away. I usually give DS1 two chances, three max, before finding something else for him to do.
 
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