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I've been mulling this over for a while now. By "Counting," I mean giving your child a chance to finish a task before you step in and do it. Part of me doesn't like it, but I revert to it when I would like dd to do something. She is 29 months, btw. Otherwise, I end up trying to (1) cajole her, (2) humor her into doing it (3) be too firm/strict (4) just do it myself. By the end of the process, I can tell that I am getting angry. Part of it is that she's a toddler who is exploring her limits and wants things her way. I am pretty flexible about that. For example, she's in a "nudist" stage right now, flinging clothes off herself faster than I can put them on. But, when I want her to stay dressed, then I resort to counting. I'll tell her, "I'll count to five and then I will help you put your shorts back on" OR "....I'll help you close the refrigerator door" (after she's had it open for 5 min looking for ice cream!) I try to never say "If you don't do it right now, I'll do it for you," but basically it's the same thing, just a more politically correct and polite way of saying "Do it now!"<br><br>
When I don't do that, I feel that I completely lose control of the situation, such as when it's time for bed and we need to go into the bedroom, but DD wants to run around b/c she doesn't want to go to bed. Instead of getting mad or forcing her to do it, I'll usually give her a choice first. Such as, I'll ask her "Do you want me to chase you into the room or do you want to crawl like a doggie." Half the time, this strategy works. The other half, she'll just say, "No, I want to.... (fill in the blank with whatever action is inappropriate). So, that's when I do the counting thing.<br><br>
My question to all of you is, do you think this falls in the spectrum of GD? Do you use it? IF so, (or if not) why not?<br><br>
I'm really interested in your perspectives, especially if you have/had toddlers around!<br><br>
Libby
 

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Well, I have a toddler (almost 24 months) and we use counting, but I'm not sure if it's exactly the same way you are talking about.<br><br>
We use counting for transitions between activities. Example, if we are at the playground, I tell her "five more minutes then we have to go home". I repeat for "3 more minutes" then "one more minute" and then we leave. I've been doing this forever with her, and it works 99.9% of the time. It actually amazes me how absolutely fine she is with whatever we end up doing, even if she has stated earlier that she doesn't want to do that. We'll be colouring after bath and I'll ask her "do you want to go lie down and have milkies?" (this means "go to bed for the night"). Sometimes she says yes, sometimes no. If it's no, I wait a bit longer, then tell her "okay, we can colour for five more minutes, then it's time to go have milkies" and darned if she quite happily goes to bed after the five minutes is up.<br><br>
I'm not certain that what you are saying is much different than this. When I need her to do something, I try to give her lots of time to do it (toddlers just work on such a slower time scale than adults), but if for some reason there is a time constraint, I'll go straight to the counting thing.<br><br>
This works for everything from nursing (it's been a critical tool for nightweaning), to activities, to bedtime, bathtime (both going to the bath, and then getting her to leave the bath, lol), going out, coming home, etc...and I can probably count on one hand the number of times she's actually protested with the time is up.
 

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I think it can fit.<br>
We use it pretty regularly. As in, ds isn't doing whatever we need him to do (example, take his muddy boots off in the house) and I'll say, "You may take your boots off, please." He either ignores me or refuses and I'll say, "The consequence of not taking your boots off is that we'll put the boots away and you can wear different shoes when we go outside again." (Boots being the footwear of his choice for the ease of putting them on and off independently.) Then I'll say, "Are you going to take your boots off or choose the consequence?" If he still ignores me, I'll say, "I'll count to 5 while you decide, if you don't say anything or take your boots off by the time I say 5, you are choosing the consequence."<br>
I think it works well for us b/c it gives him some space to make the decision.
 

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I do what the dalai mama does (I love that user name BTW).<br><br>
DD is 27 months. Counting works - usually SHE will finish the counting and do what needs to get done. LOL.
 

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What the_dalai_mama suggested is what we try to put in practice too. I'm not as good about explaining as it sounds like she is, especially since my DS has a short attention span and tunes me out if I do too much talking. But he understands that before I get to three he has the chance to choose to do what I'm asking, or face the consequence. Just yesterday I used it when he was playing with his magnadoodle. We have a rule that when he's finished, he needs to make sure all the magnet stamps are put away so they don't get lost. If they don't get put away, the toy goes to time out. So he finished, leaving a stamp on the floor. The conversation goes someting like this: "DS, I need you to pick up the circle and put it away if you are finished coloring." He looks at me and at the stamp but stays where he is sitting. "If you don't clean it up, I'll have to put it away and you won't get to play with it any more today." He still appeared to ignore what I was saying, becoming interested in something on the floor. "I'll give you until the count of 3. One..." He got up and came over toward me, picked up the stamp and put it away. "Thank you sweetheart. I love that you made the choice to take care of your toy."<br><br>
I try not to focus too much on the counting, since I've used it in asking him to come to me for a diaper change, with the consequence that if he doesn't come, I go get him... and he thinks it's fun for me to chase him, and will start counting for me when he wants to be chased. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"> So, lately I've been trying to make it more clear that I'm giving him a chance to choose an action, and if he takes too long, I make the choice for him.<br><br>
Hope that makes sense.
 

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I think counting can fit with GD. We count to three, and then ___ happens. (We help or remove object or whatever). In our house, counting minimizes yelling and gives the kids some control over the situation. With no yelling and a gentle/logical consequence when we get to 3, I see counting as a useful GD tool.
 

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Counting in the "fish or cut bait" kinda scenario has always felt kind of like a threat, to me, and anyway I'm a rebel at heart. So I only count for the good stuff. If my daughter is tugging on my pantleg, standing at the gate wanting out, etc, when I get to ten (sometimes REALLY REALLY FAST!) she gets what she has requested. Sometimes it buys me time to dry my hands (or finish a post!) and in the mean time it lets her know that I heard her request. And anyway who doesn't like to anticipate good stuff?! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> I think it may even have helped cultivate her patience.<br><br>
I know, kinda OT, but what the heck. FFT.
 
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