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I just don't know anything about ANYTHING that has to do with gentle discipline. I don't even know what non-coercive parenting is.<br><br>
Please don't judge, I just need info. And I need personal stories, not a bunch of links, as I am about to go thru the ones already in this forum.<br><br>
I was spanked as a child and I think that it becomes embedded into you and you have to fight against it if you want to break that pattern. There for awhile, I didn't even think about it, I'd just spank him. I know that is wrong now, I am more educated about it (not near as much as I want to be though). I try not to spank my son but sometimes I just get so frustrated with him when he won't listen or he throws a tantrum.<br><br>
Please, tell me what I can do. I don't want to spank anymore, I feel horrible after I do so I am NOT gonna do it any longer. I need a better way to discipline him and show him right from wrong. Help me!!!! Thanks sooo much.
 

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Hey, mama<br><br>
I know what it's like to start down a parenting path and then regret it. For you, you have a chance to make a change and that's so wonderful for you, your child and your relationship. Now, enough with the sappy stuff <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
First, I would say that frustrated or not, you need to decide that hitting is not something you want to do.<br><br>
Second, you should know that hitting, GD or any other "philosophy" isn't going to create a child that is never a challenge to you.<br><br>
What I would do, at this point...if I were you, is focus on what kind of parent you want to be and what kind of relationship you want to have with your child. Let the behaviour go for now.<br><br>
In my opinion and experience, acceptable behavior follows when you're in good health and following your ethics.
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Second, you should know that hitting, GD or any other "philosophy" isn't going to create a child that is never a challenge to you.<br><br>
What I would do, at this point...if I were you, is focus on what kind of parent you want to be and what kind of relationship you want to have with your child.</td>
</tr></table></div>
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> Change can be challenging but can also reap high rewards! Maybe you can tell us a little bit more about your son, his age, his temperament, his behaviors that push your buttons, etc?<br>
I love reading the old threads, so much good advice is given here. Do you want book recommendations? There is a sticky at the top of the forum or you could ask here for favorites if so.
 

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My son is 2.5 years. He likes to throw things, pull stuff out (like if he gets A book, he has to pull them ALL down off the shelf and won't pick them up.) He says stuff like: shut up and stupid. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> He got those words from my bros, I constantly tell them to watch what they say but they dont' listen, they think it is funny. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/angry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="angry"> He won't go to sleep at a resonable hour, no matter how early I put him to bed. I lay with him for hours to get him asleep but he just won't go, he wants to play and jump around on the bed. This is the hardest thing of all since I am in college, working, and single, I get worn out most of the time and that makes me grouchy <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">: He is real clingy when we are out in public ( I made this better by wearing him <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> ) but he still gets really cranky and whiney. He also likes to run away from me if I am not wearing him, this really upsets me cuz he can run really fast and it is hard for me to keep up with him. I dont' have many problems at home, he listens to me here but if we go to my mom's or somebody else's house, he is a terror. But I must be doing something right cuz anybody else that keeps him (when I am not around) says he is a complete angel. He ALWAYS helps pick up at daycare and even tries to help feed and change the babie's diapers. That makes me feel better <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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A lot of the behaviour that you discribe sounds a lot to me like what being 2 is all about. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> Seriously I would read as much as you can on what is developmentaly aproriate for his age and then plan ahead for it. If he likes to pull all the books off the shelf, maybe they need to be out of his reach or maybe he needs to be supervised with them or maybe you need to be clear that the books need to be back on the shelf before you can read the one he picked even if you are the one putting them back. He will get the message eventualy. A lot of the time i find when I'm getting realy frustrated with my dc it's because I'm expecting more of them than they are able to give at their age.<br><br>
Good luck, and good for you for making the change!
 

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Hi wearingmyboy!<br><br>
I know you don´t want more links right now, but I would still like to recommend Jan Hunt´s website for you to read. There are just so many wonderful articles there about GD, they are all in one place.... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"><br><br><a href="http://naturalchild.org/" target="_blank">http://naturalchild.org/</a><br>
The link below takes you to her article "10 alternatives to Punishment"<br><a href="http://naturalchild.org/jan_hunt/punishment.html" target="_blank">http://naturalchild.org/jan_hunt/punishment.html</a><br><br>
Good luck - sending you lots of strength - you are brave to realise you need to change - and then doing it!<br><br>
I originally posted the article here FYI but had to edit...
 

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Hmmmm. Here's the thing that changed my mind on it all. I read TCC, and realized that kids are innately social creatures, and that they WANT to do the right thing, and they WANT guidance to do so. That guidance doesn't need to contain any coercion, punishments, rewards, anything. Just guidance. kwim? (I'm pretty against using behaviorism- positive or negative reinforcement- on kids <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> ).<br>
I also respect his desires/thoughts/feelings as legitimate. I try to do what I can to do what HE wants, and what I want. Mutually agreeable solutions. We typically can find a way to meet everyone's needs, and make both of us happy. We try <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br>
It also helped when I read Becoming The Parent You Want To Be, because it goes a lot into what is appropriate behavior. It also talks a lot about what you can do, to try to redirect unacceptable behavior, in a child friendly way.<br>
What I do, when ds (18 mos) does something that I don't want him to do- I tell him WHY I don't want him to do it. "Don't hit the dog. It hurts her, and she doesn't like to be hit." Then I try to figure out what the original impulse was, to hit her. Was he trying to interact with her? I say "If you want to pet her, pet her gently." If he was trying to get her to move out of his way, I say "If you want her to move, say 'move Brooke,' or come get me and I'll get her to move."<br>
If he's hitting the window with blocks, I tell him that he can either wipe the window with a washcloth, or he can build with blocks. Or that he can hit the couch with the blocks. Something that is related to what he was doing, but acceptable to me.<br>
Honestly, if I give him alternatives that respect his original impulse, the vast majority of the time he is HAPPY to go along with them. I put a lot of faith in the fact that he wants to do the right thing, and that he wants me to help him.<br>
When I want him to do something, I tell him what I want done, and I expect that he will go along, unless he has a good reason not to. I think the expectation is important there- I expect that he WILL meaning, that I think its in his nature (all kids) to do what is truly expected of them. Not "I expect you to..." because if you have to say it, you probably didn't really expect that they would do it, of their own volition. kwim? And if he doesn't go along, I may try to make it agreeable for him to go along (for ex, picking up toys. If he chooses not to at first, then I may make a sort of game, or get really specific "can you pick up all the blocks? Now how about the books?". But I don't usually go there. He usually is happy to help, and the times that he doesn't want to, I figure he has a legitimate reason, so I do it myself.)<br><br>
As far as the books go, I'd tell ds that if he takes all the books down, then they have to be cleaned up, and that I'd prefer if he didn't knock them all down. (In our house, HIS books, he is free to do what he wants with. But I wouldn't want him knocking all my books off the bookshelf.) Then, I'd probably let him choose what to do (because I know he's generally gentle with books). And if he chose to knock them all down, I'd tell him it was time to pick them up. And I'd start cleaning them up, and he would probably come help. And if not, I wouldn't press it, because imo THAT starts a sort of "power struggle" and makes it harder for them to choose to help later.<br><br>
As far as sleep, yeah, we have that problem too. Bedtime for ds used to be 2am!!! I don't work, but that was still a bit rough for me. I found that no amount of TRYING to get him to bed earlier did any bit of good. It actually helped to have him do a LOT of activity a few hours before his bedtime.<br>
Something else we did (because I didn't know what else to do- I was getting too grumpy during the day, due to a late late bedtime, and waking up a katrillion times a night to nurse ds back to sleep) was to limit his napping after a certain time. I hated to do it, and didn't really do it often, but I tried REALLY hard to make sure he had his daily nap before 6pm. I'd sit and nurse him, and have it quiet, and all that to get him to have his nap early enough.<br>
Also, I started getting up a bit earlier. And since he doesn't sleep long without me, he got up earlier than normal too. So we've now moved bedtime from 1-2 (never before midnight), to sometime between 11 and 1. And that works way better for me.<br><br>
if it were me, with the "shut up" and "stupid", I would probably tell him I didn't like him saying those words, and give him other words he CAN say that might be fun to say. I'd tell him calmly, and not make a big deal out of it. I imagine making a big deal out of it would just make it seem more fun to say those words. But also, saying NOTHING about it isn't really giving him the right guidance. I'd probably give him info, and alternatives, and let him do what he wants to do with it.<br><br>
And I think it's easy for kids to not listen at other houses. There's more action going on, there's more to be distracted by, there's new stuff to look at. My ds is kinda like that too. But where we go (to my families homes) he gets constant attention anyways, so he really doesn't have much chance to get into anything lol.<br>
I'd say just calmly give info, give alternatives, and expect that he wants to do the right thing, and wants your guidance. And respect what he is experiencing- the new stuff, the excitement, he really WANTS to touch that vase, whatever. lol<br><br>
Wow, so that was long. Sorry. I hope some of it helps <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I agree with pp that your son's behavior sounds very age appropriate. Once I read what was appropriate behavior when my ds was that age, I stopped taking his behavior personally and was not frustrated with him as much. A good source for finding that info is Dr. Sear's "The Discipline Book."<br><br>
I've just been dealing with 2 little boys throwing things all day long. (Mine are 3.5 and 1.5 yo.) About 2 weeks ago, I adopted a new no-tolerance policy for throwing things in the house. If something is thrown once, I put it in a large clear plastic bin and it cannot be played with until the next day. It's been important that my boys can still see the toys that are off-limits, because they'll come over to the bin and ask for something. Then I say gently, "I'm sorry, but because that was thrown you cannot play with it today. You can play with it tomorrow. We need to remember to not throw inside." The first couple of days the bin was full by the end of the day. A week later, there were only 5 things in it at the end of the day. Yesterday it was empty. Some days the throwing is more than others, still. But it is SO much less than it was. And I'm not getting irritated and frustrated with them throwing. There is immediate consequences for throwing, now, and they both understand it. It has helped SO much!<br><br>
My oldest used to pull all the books off the shelf, too. It was really irritating, too. Once he did it, I'd leave the books there for the rest of the day, and pick them up at bedtime. (The few times I'd go put them back up on the shelf, he'd just pull them off again . . . which really made me mad. So I stopped doing that to avoid getting myself upset--a key thing to do when you recognize it.) At bedtime, I'd say, "It's time to say 'night-night' to your books. Can you help me?" Sometimes he'd help, sometimes he wouldn't. But I'd make a big game/show of it, saying "night-night!" to each book before I put it up on the shelf. As time went on, he was more interested in helping. Now, at 3.5 he'll help me put anything away or pick up any toys. He's eager and willing. I think because I didn't make it an issue (and still don't if occasionally he doesn't want to . . . though I can't remember the last time that happened) or a power struggle. He doesn't like to pick up toys all by himself, but if I come over to help him, he's happy to do it together. Have you asked what they do at daycare when it's time to pick up? Do they sing a song? Is there a routine? Perhaps you might learn something there that you can do at home, too.<br><br>
Don't know what to tell you about "stupid" and "shut up." If he's exposed to that, then I would think it's going to be pretty difficult to get him to stop. A pp's suggestion of giving him something else he can say and telling him those are not words you use is good . . . but don't expect that to be effective immediately. It's going to take time.<br><br>
For sleeping problems . . . how many naps is he taking? What time is his last nap of the day? I've found that if my kids sleep any later than 3 pm, then we have a hard time getting them to sleep at the usual bedtime of 7-8pm. My 1.5 yo takes only one nap . . . but if it's after 2pm, and he hasn't taken a nap yet, then we do not put him down for one. Some days he doesn't take a nap at all, on his own decision. But our schedule is bath and bed at 7, the boys are asleep by 7:45 usually, and they're up in the morning between 6 and 7, sometimes before 6 (they've always been early risers, hence the early bedtime). Do you have a reliable bedtime routine? Bath, brush teeth, pajamas, read some stories, turn on bedtime music, and lights off? Or something of that sort, whatever works for you and your son. That can help. Is he getting enough run-around time during the day? I find that if I get my kids outside and run them around (whether that's just around the yard, or take them on a hike on safe trails for toddlers . . . where they do the actual walking, rather than me carrying them because I am trying to wear them out!) they go to sleep quicker and easier those nights.<br><br>
If he's running away from you when you're out, I probably wouldn't let him down. Don't give him the opportunity, unless you are in a safe, enclosed space. The first time I let my oldest son down in a store, it was a very empty children's clothing store . . . and he may have been close to 2! Otherwise, at the grocery store or other places, he was in a sling, in a stroller, or grocery cart. I didn't want to take the chance on him running . . . for safety reasons, as well as not creating a situation where I was going to become frustrated with him. Bit by bit, he got more chances to be out of the cart or stroller or my arms, and he learned to stay with me. The other suggestion I could give would be to have some special/irresistible snack with you when you're out. That may keep him closeby. (I discovered this at the grocery store a few months ago, at a time when my oldest would stay nearby, but would keep a good distance sometimes . . . something I just don't feel comfortable with at a crowded grocery store. I was buying banana chips that day, and he asked for some. I gave him a few and he stayed right with me the rest of the time so he could have more of them.)<br><br>
For tantrums, I've never gotten upset with my kids when they have tantrums . . . not even out in public. When that happens, I know they have just been overwhelmed with their own emotions . . . whether it's not getting what they want for the 100th time that day or whatever. It doesn't matter. They are overwhelmed, and the only way they know how to deal with it is to let off steam. I stay near them, and let them go through it, telling them, "I'm right here if you need me." Mine tend to hit or kick, so I cannot hold them or be too close, but I give them space while staying near so they don't feel abandoned or shunned when that happens. I've even done it at the grocery store. I don't worry about what other people think, because how my child is feeling is more important than what others think about me or my kids. They get over it, and we move on.<br><br>
It sounds like your son is really sweet. And it sounds as if you are really stretched thin. It's so hard to be patient and gentle when you're tired and grouchy. Keep in mind as you start to employ different strategies, that things are not going to change overnight. It takes time, which can sometimes be very frustrating. It's hard to go against what comes second nature to many of us . . . spanking because it happened to us, because everyone else does it, because it's socially accepted. Know that you're headed to a good place with changing your philosophy on parenting. It's not an easy place. GD is not easy, it's a lot of work, but it feels so much better than doing things another way. Which makes you feel better as a parent.<br><br>
HTH. Good luck!
 

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I know it's hard sometimes when you hit that point of no return and you feel that urge to spank. Many, many of us here who practice GD get to that point, we just don't do it. If you think about it, I'm guessing that spanking doesn't bring about the behavior that you want since the behavior isn't getting better. It doesn't make you feel better about the situation or your parenting, thus you are here.<br><br>
What spanking does do is allow you to physically take out your frustration that you feel at that moment on your small child. Think about it, spanking isn't discipline -- it is a release of frustration in a physical way on our children. It doesn't sound like such a good option when you think of it that way.<br><br>
If you want another way to parent, read Dr. Sears <span style="text-decoration:underline;">The Discipline Book</span>, read Alfie Kohn's <span style="text-decoration:underline;">Unconditional Parenting</span>, go to Jan Hunt's website and read. Then, take the information you have and decide what you think will work for you. You don't have to (nor should you) follow one person as a guru for childrearing, we are all different and there isn't a one size fits all style, but we can learn from all these people and form our own style.<br><br>
Make the decision not to spank. When you feel that urge, and I'm sure you will, just walk away for a moment and let yourself calm down until you can go back and deal with the situation effectively. It's easier to do this than just to say that you'll try not to spank. You just have to make the decision not to do it anymore and find other ways to deal with that initial anger.<br><br>
I can't imagine the stress that you must have as a single parent and I admire you so much for wanting to become the best parent you can be. I get help from my dh and can get away for a few minutes when I hit that wall, but you don't have that option. You have to deal with it and don't get breaks. I wish you luck and I hope you find the information that will help you.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/notes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notes">:<br>
Lots of good advice in general here.....
 
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