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need ideas for punishment/discipline


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We don't spank. No comments on that please as you won't change our minds on this.

 

DD gets very angry and defiant when tired and hungry. She is an only child. Age 10. No tv watching or game playing household. Only "privilege" to take away really is computer, which she uses to write stories or design houses. Other things she does are outside activities. Hate to take those away since it's her only time with other kids/people. Grounding/time in room doesn't seem to work cuz she can entertain herself quite well.

 

We used to have her copy a page or two from a book or solve a math worksheet as punishment. Now that doesn't seem to curb the attitude.

 

Any other creative ideas?

 

Lesley

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These have worked well:

 

Make them write an essay about what they did wrong, how they should behave differently, etc... at 10 I would say 500 words minimum. Usually this somehow relates to respect.

 

Tell them they must have too much time on their hands so they have to do : weeding, mowing, mopping, clean out a closet, clean out the garage, etc. This has to be something in addition to regular chores.

 

My son is hypoglycemic like me - so ever since he was about 10 I made him very responsible for watching for his blood sugar warning signs. He knows he needs to catch it early, and that he won't get much pity from me if he doesn't. We always have healthy snacks he is allowed to have in between meals in the house, and usually I have at least one or two granola bars in my purse.

 

Good luck!

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First of all, I don't know anyone, even if they did spank, that would spank a 10 year old. Seems a little ridiculous.

 

My 10 yr old loses allowance, gets extra chores (harder ones than she normally has), gets grounded from friends, loses tv time, or earlier bed time. She may also have to do extra writing, or some other extra school assignment if she's being lazy and/or having a smart mouth during school. hth!

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Lesley,

 

Are the only times you're seeing an issue when she's tired or hungry? That seems like you could easily teach her to be mindful and be prepared. For example, if hungry is after 3 hours, then maybe she needs to have an apple or some almonds or something a couple hours after eating. Many people need a power nap in the afternoon. One thing I think homeschoolers often don't do that public schools get is a change in activity and intensity. So maybe she needs some down time between Latin and Math, for example.

 

I would, instead of punishing her, work with her so she can learn about HER body and HER needs and work to prevent them. IRL, no one is going to hit or ground her because she didn't keep her blood sugar up. Instead, it makes more sense to teach her to prevent those issues and handle them quickly when she hasn't.

 

Anyway, I hope this helps a little. A ten yr old shouldn't need punishment more than once in the bluest moons as long as you discipline (teach/guide) her. If you find yourself punishing even semi-regularly, beef up the guidance, help, teaching, encouragement, direction, etc. She does need life skills, the ability to problem solve, etc. If you have controlled her rather than given her those things so far (and most people, unfortunately, do), then you can easily change that around now. They are only young so long. They NEED life skills. Assuming she's going to be a law-abiding, contributing member of society, punishment bearing is not a skill she'll need.

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It's not creative, but time outs work. I'm not talking about sending her to her room where she can do any number of things, I'm talking about a time out on the spot - sit on the floor do nothing - for a few minutes so she has time to think about how her behavior isn't acceptable. The time out ends with an apology and brainstorming on how to handle the same situation better in the future.

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I would take a very close look at her diet and routine. Make sure she has 5 small meals or at least 3 regular meals and 2 small snacks. Make sure there is some source of protein at each of those meals and snacks. Make sure that none of those snacks are overly carby or sugary. Make sure that she gets adequate rest. Once those things are addressed, then take a look at discipline. You don't have to just take things away for discipline, you know. You can add things - like running laps (not good if the reason she's cranky is low bloodsugar) or emptying the dishwasher.

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I get very cranky when I'm hungry & tired too.

 

She's only ten, so I assume that you provide the meals and/or snacks? and determine the bedtime? I'd see what you need to change there, rather than looking for punishments.

 

 

Exactly. Why punish her for something that parents can help her with? Help her to have snacks/meals BEFORE she gets overly hungry and ensure proper rest.

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I agree with Pamela. A child who is hungry or tired needs to be cut a little slack. Especially if it is your fault she is hungry or tired. I have no idea what goes on in your household, but I can only think a lack of healthy meals and snacks causes hunger in the average American family. Give her a snack or let her get her own.

 

Again, if she is tired during the day or has had an unusually active day an earlier bed time is called for, or possibly being allowed to sleep in late. Pre-puberty and puberty sleep requirements may be starting for your dd. My almost 11-year old dd slept 12 hours after going to bed at 10 last night. She played hard with friends yesterday. A child going through puberty may require 12 hours of sleep a night and a nap during the day. A body gearing up for puberty requires more sleep too.

 

A body working that hard needs extra food and sleep. Cut her some slack and give extra meals/snacks and an earlier bed time or allow her to sleep in.

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Lesley,

 

Are the only times you're seeing an issue when she's tired or hungry? That seems like you could easily teach her to be mindful and be prepared. For example, if hungry is after 3 hours, then maybe she needs to have an apple or some almonds or something a couple hours after eating. Many people need a power nap in the afternoon. One thing I think homeschoolers often don't do that public schools get is a change in activity and intensity. So maybe she needs some down time between Latin and Math, for example.

 

I would, instead of punishing her, work with her so she can learn about HER body and HER needs and work to prevent them. IRL, no one is going to hit or ground her because she didn't keep her blood sugar up. Instead, it makes more sense to teach her to prevent those issues and handle them quickly when she hasn't.

 

Anyway, I hope this helps a little. A ten yr old shouldn't need punishment more than once in the bluest moons as long as you discipline (teach/guide) her. If you find yourself punishing even semi-regularly, beef up the guidance, help, teaching, encouragement, direction, etc. She does need life skills, the ability to problem solve, etc. If you have controlled her rather than given her those things so far (and most people, unfortunately, do), then you can easily change that around now. They are only young so long. They NEED life skills. Assuming she's going to be a law-abiding, contributing member of society, punishment bearing is not a skill she'll need.

 

:iagree::iagree::iagree:

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DD gets very angry and defiant when tired and hungry.

 

 

If she is really tired and hungry, I'd work on her raising her hand to notify you of this (as well as you watching to prevent this) prior to melt downs. When it happens, I'd feed/rest child, and then, when the mind is clearly, quietly discuss other ways of notifying you she is tired/hungry.

 

If it is the excuse she suddenly comes up with after temper (my son has been known to do this, and it is clear it is an act), a chore.

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I'm venturing to say that it's not just when she's overly tired/hungry...sometimes we see it that way, but then that behavior starts popping up because it was not handled sufficiently the first 3x it happened.

 

I have two daughters 11 & 12...we've been there...hormones/hungry/tired are never an excuse for grumpy...if you can have self-control when you're fed/slept well, you can have self-control other times...we can't let that be an excuse...now if you've had 18 hours of driving and going on 3 hours of sleep, by all means let your grumpy go...but don't you know people who have that and STILL choose to be civil??

 

If we are grumpy/tantrummy we always apologize for it, part of the problem is seeing it for what it is, selfish indulgence that has a desire to make others as miserable as we want them to be. Once they realize it wasn't the best way, they start seeing it for what it is...in our house, we rely on proverbs and scripture help when our common sense fails...be slow to anger....why?? Give them great examples...when has anger/tantrums ever been productive (now I'm sure there are a few on the battlefield, but there goes that 80/20 rule and here it's more like 99/1 rule)?

 

Now as far as punishment, once they understand what they're doing is wrong and WHY you want to see a different behavior (for their well-being, training a child in the way they should go vein)...then they must know there are consequences...for us it's not about taking away privileges (oh yes, we've done that...not very successful) but putting in chores in order to earn privileges...Come up with a top 10 list of chores that need to be accomplished before they resume their regularly scheduled day...

 

10. Go wipe all the toilet lids and sinks...expect an inspection...(this also goes to teaching them proper cleaning habits, always be positive and encouraging but firm on your standards)

 

9. Rake leaves (if you have a lot of trees, this one is good)...that tantrum just cost you 3 large bags of leaves...no skimpy bags, big stuffed to the gills bags...you'll even help hold the bags open..who knows you may even have a fun moment jumping in them before packing...

 

8. Give the dog a bath....this speaks for itself, also make her clean up after the mess she makes! :)

 

7. Clean all the windows.

ETC!!

 

The list can be specially made for your household! Polish silverware, organize drawers, sharpen all the pencils...just give her a task...that's how we discipline...it's actually good for them to feel needed...the key is not to explode and send her on her way, be very calm....clear....precise....set it up so she knows what to expect don't add to her frustration by blowing your top and giving her 3 things b/c the tantrum was soo big....over a time, you'll see the behavior change...a huge key is to PRAISE her when she's really showing improvement..tell her how much it means to you and you know how hard it is....this builds some great trust!!

 

HTH!

Tara

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DD gets very angry and defiant when tired and hungry.

 

Lesley

 

Is this the only time she gets this way? If so, it doesn't sound like a discipline problem, but a medical problem. This sounds like hypoglycemia. One of the signs that things are getting bad is irrationality and emotionality. Low blood sugar can cause fatigue, listlessness, confusion, inability to make decisions, and irritability. The cure is to feed the child appropriately for the condition.

 

Children with hypoglycemia need to eat every 3 hours. Also, what they eat is as important as how often they eat. Eliminating "white carbs" is important. Also, carbs need to be balanced with protein. When people with this condition eat too many carbs at one sitting, they experience a rise in blood sugar. However, the body desn't seem to know when to turn it off and they blood sugar gets used up. When the carbs are balanced with protein and/or fat, the body takes longer to digest these foods and the blood sugar remains constant.

 

So, breakfast should be high in protein - eggs, meat, nut butters, legumes are good. Fruit juices are bad - like mainlining sugar. Pancakes, waffles, etc - not so good either. Fruits, while very good foods, can cause this as well. Apples alone - not so good. Apples with about a tbsp of peanut butter - better.

 

My 16yo struggles with this. Since he eats all day long at home, he really doesn't have this problem. However, when he is out and is forced to skip a snack (like on some scout trips), he becomes a PITA. His scout leaders (and some of his fellow scouts) know to just shove some food in his face and he will become human again.

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Guest ME-Mommy

Agreeing with others that suggested a change in dietary habits/timing...

 

Just want to say also that using school work as a punishment/discipline generally isn't a good idea...I would rather assign extra physical chores or exercise than have a child see school work as a punishment. KWIM??

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well, I'd feed said child and make her lay down somewhere boring for a nap. While child is napping, think of creative consequence for her. Like cleaning toilets. Those can always use an extra scrub. If this kind of behavior happens when she isn't tired or hungry, then you need another place for timeouts. Stairs, couch, spot on floor, spot to put her nose on the wall, corner. Lots of choices, really. I think you need to explore dirty chores as an option for discipline. Also, if she can entertain herself so well in her room, you might stop to think about what she is entertaining herself with in her room, and start removing some of those things when attitude crops up. Does she value her bed? make her sleep on the hard kitchen floor. Her privacy? you can always take the door off her room. I'm not saying she has done *anything* deserving of such measures, I'm just giving you some ideas.

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My oldest dd is sensitive to changes in blood sugar and cranky when tired. By age 10, I was teaching her to self-monitor her hunger and tiredness (is that a word?). I wanted her to learn to recognize and take responsibility for the way her moods and emotions respond to her physical needs. She gets a snack when she needs one, and takes a nap or goes to bed early when she gets over-tired.

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Guest janainaz

I would not overreact. I would just send her to her room to chill out and tell her she can come out when she can be respectful. I do give my kids room to be in a bad mood sometimes, but they just can't cross the respect line. When my ds10 gets like that, I just tell him to go hang out in his room and I try to make light of it by joking around with him. He snaps out of it rather quickly.

 

Honestly, I get moody sometimes and my kids will come up and tell me that they love me and give me a hug. It seriously snaps me out of it. Sometimes doing the opposite of what you 'feel' like doing works wonders. Kids are human too.

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Perhaps I'm missing something, but I would focus on prevention, not consequences. At ten, she could begin to take some responsibility for her body and understanding that she gets cranky when hungry or tired. However, I think the primary responsibility still falls on you as the mother, to monitor her sleep and food intake. And if she does get cranky, then I'd be supportive in terms of helping her calm down until her body gets what it needs.

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I agree with setting up a routine of diet, exercise, and rest that will help to prevent the problem to begin with. It needs to be a routine, because by the time she notices she is feeling odd, it is most likely too late. This is a problem that needs to be prevented rather then treated whenever possible. So, a protein with breakfast every morning, a snack after two subjects, etc.

 

ma23peas said: ...hormones/hungry/tired are never an excuse for grumpy...if you can have self-control when you're fed/slept well, you can have self-control other times...we can't let that be an excuse... but I disagree; naturally, we all want to work towards having self-control even under difficult circumstances, but I think it's pointless and a bit cruel to punish a 10-yr-old who is clearly affected by hunger and/or fatigue. Whether it reaches the level of hypoglycemia or not, it is a real physical state, and being irrational is a known, common side effect (so trying to reason with a child in the grips of low blood sugar is an exercise in both frustration and futility). I'm sure that people who don't experience this for themselves might find it almost impossible to understand, but it's quite well-documented. My nephew and one of my kids are like this in the extreme, and it's super easy to tell when the difficulty is caused by low blood sugar - - it looks nothing like the same kid when they're just mad or impatient.

 

In any situation, I'd hesitate to 'ratchet up' the punishment just because the original consequence isn't making the child unhappy enough (ie, she can entertain herself alone in her room). In this case, I'd rely mostly on natural consequences for those times when she goes off routine and melts down, the same natural consequences you or I would face if we melted down and got nasty with others. One, it doesn't feel good at the time or afterwards. Two, the people around you are now cross with you and not eager to spend time with you. And so on.

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DD gets very angry and defiant when tired and hungry. She is an only child. Age 10.

 

Sounds like hypoglycemia. Kids like that need to eat every three hours. The angry/defiant is a chemical reaction to low blood sugar. The behavior *can* be controlled, somewhat, for a short time, but only if the child recognizes it for what it is. The ultimate solution is that you need to feed the child (or they need to recognize the condition and feed themself). Any attempts to make the child do a chore or take a time out or what-have-you when they are in this state are *not* helping - you must address the biology first.

 

If you do not suffer from this, it's hard to understand. Low blood sugar is NOT the same thing as hunger. The anger and defiance are part of the body's reaction to this state - they are warning signs of a chemical imbalance.

 

The long-term "cure" is to teach the child to recognize when they are in this state, and to teach them how to cope with it. Don't try to do this while their blood sugar is low - feed them *then* address the issue. Teach them to make sure they have access to food - for example, keeping trail mix or nuts or a granola bar with them just in case if they are going out. Help them to plan their day so they know when to have their planned snacks to prevent going low in the first place. Help them to recognize the warning signs so they can address them early and avoid a full-blown crash.

 

If you are a "three meals a day ONLY" family, you are probably going to have to make allowances for this child to snack between meals. This doesn't mean junk - protein foods and complex carbohydrates are best, sugars are worst (in the long run, though a quick OJ can be a good "quick fix").

 

People with this condition do much better when they have a minimal-sugar, minimal simple-carbs diet. Eating a lot of sugar gives a high blood sugar, followed by a crash-low. Avoiding sugars helps keep things on an even keel. You still have to eat every three hours, but it's much better. Taking notice of different foods' glycemic index is the best way to get a sense of which foods are better for people like this.

 

Of course eventually the child will need to learn that even if their blood sugar is low they must make their best attempt at being civil. It helps to give them ways to communicate their situation: "Mom, my blood sugar is feeling low - I think I need to eat."

 

Ditto to what everyone else said about hormones for this age - PMS seems to begin quite a while (years?) before Aunt Flo actually arrives. Again, helping dd identify the symptoms goes a long way towards minimizing the mood swings.

 

Again - assuming it is hypoglycemia, this is a *medical* problem, not a discipline one.

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DD gets very angry and defiant when tired and hungry.

 

Feed her when she's hungry, have her lie down for rest when she's tired. Blood sugar fluctuations can play havoc on people's emotions, and punishing her for this wouldn't solve the problem in any way. When she starts to get mouthy, say, "Dd, you must be tired. It's time to go lie down for half an hour. After a nap you should be able to speak to me more pleasantly," or "Dd, you must be hungry. Go fix yourself a pb sandwich, and after you've eaten we will try this conversation again."

 

Tara

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I can be rather unpleasant when I'm tired and/or hungry. You didn't really say what it is that she is doing did you, just that she gets angry? Unless she was just being and over the top meanie, I'd just gently remind her not to raise her voice at me and then address the problem. Feed the kid if she is hungry, or ask her to go to her room and rest for a bit if you can see that she is tired.

 

Stairs, couch, spot on floor, spot to put her nose on the wall, corner. Lots of choices, really. I think you need to explore dirty chores as an option for discipline. Also, if she can entertain herself so well in her room, you might stop to think about what she is entertaining herself with in her room, and start removing some of those things when attitude crops up. Does she value her bed? make her sleep on the hard kitchen floor. Her privacy? you can always take the door off her room. I'm not saying she has done *anything* deserving of such measures, I'm just giving you some ideas.

 

Huh? We are talking about a ten year old child. What is the point of making her stand with her nose against the wall? How humiliating. Kitchen floor? Revoking her privacy? Why? Holy cow, if that's the go-to for being a little crabby sometimes at ten years of age I can't help but wonder how those punishments would be ramped up to suit a defiant teen. I think that's over the top.

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This definitely sounds like blood sugar. She's at that age where she's too young to take full responsibility for her nutritional needs, but too old to be walked through every meal and snack. So things might slip through the cracks and the next thing you know she's irritable.

 

I'd make sure she eats fewer carbs. If she does eats them she should eat some fat at the same time, as that helps manage blood sugar. So instead of an apple alone, she should eat it with some cheese. Or add some peanut butter to her banana. And so on.

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DD gets very angry and defiant when tired and hungry.

 

Help her learn to manage her hunger and energy level so she doesn't get tired and hungry. IMO you can't punish this away. She needs to learn to read her body's signals and respond to them. ITA with avoiding snacks that are pure carbs. It will make her blood sugar cycle. Some protein should go in along with the carbs. If she needs a 5-10 minute break to "power rest", let her have it.

 

...hormones/hungry/tired are never an excuse for grumpy..
:rofl: seriously, I can't stop ! :rofl: And I would never hold it against anyone either. I certainly would never punish someone for it. A bit of slack and understanding goes much further with a grumpy person of any age. And perhaps a snack and drink.

 

I would give her big hugs, let her calm down and feed her. I wouldn't punish a child who was struggling to learn how to deal with hunger or tiredness.
:thumbup1: Edited by laundrycrisis
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We used to have her copy a page or two from a book or solve a math worksheet as punishment. Now that doesn't seem to curb the attitude.

 

Just wanted to add that I wouldn't use school work as discipline. I wouldn't want to endorse the idea that writing or doing math is not joyful, KWIM?

 

You also mentioned that she does quite well in her room alone. Some folks need more of this "down time" away from other people and get irritable when they don't get it. Raising Your Spirited Child talks a lot about "introverts" and "extroverts", and their differing needs. Again, helping dd identify her own moods and giving her options/ideas as to what she can do to help herself stay on an even keel will be worth more in the long run than a punishment. We all need to learn how to cope when we're feeling down - how not to take it out on others; identifying the feeling and figuring out coping strategies helps a lot. Teaching our children these things will really help them as they grow into teens and adults. Laying the groundwork now for identifying what's bugging her, etc., and learning how you can talk to her about what she's feeling etc., pays off for the teen years especially.

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Does she talk on the phone with friends? My dd9 can get this way, and before I take away her riding privledges...she looses her phone privledges. This also, includes time spent with friends after activities and such. It's pretty humbling to get to go to a practice, but not get to chat at all afterward.

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Rather than think in terms of punishment, I sometimes just think "how can we get through this without *me* losing it and behaving in a way *I* will regret".

Is it your child getting angry and defiant that is bothering you, really, or the fact that you might also get upset and behave badly?

Sometimes, *I* take a time out. Sometimes I send the kid for one. Sometimes, we just need a break from each other, and then when we reconnect, we can talk it through and let it go .

And I agree with all the others about snacks, letting the kid get her own food, and naps. Especially for me :)

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sigh....ok, I *did* sort of jump to the extreme end of things there at the end of my post, especially for a 10yo girl. I *did* qualify it by saying that she had NOT done anything to deserve this, in this instance anyway. I guess my point was that sometimes you have to be creative. And yes, I have an extremely strong willed boy (13) who occasionally gets a very "entitled" sort of attitude when it comes to "his" possessions, and "his" room (yeah, like who pays for your room, board, and possessions??"), and he has, on rare occasions, spent a night with his sleeping bag and pillow on the kitchen floor, and was a bit wiser and more reasonable child for having done so. So humble apologies to all for lofting a grenade to kill a gnat. Please, in grace, just mentally X out that whole last part where I forget I'm not dealing with *my* kid.

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I would give her big hugs, let her calm down and feed her. I wouldn't punish a child who was struggling to learn how to deal with hunger or tiredness.

I often find it's quicker, easier, and much more pleasant to give my cranky, tired children hugs and tuck them in bed than anything else. Ditto for hungry kids.

 

You can discuss tone of voice and so forth when the child is NOT hungry or tired.

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I'm normally on a pretty even keel, but when I am pregnant I have huge issues with blood sugar crashes and mood swings. I would have been much less sympathetic to your daughter's situation before I had the experience of out-of-control emotions linked to my physical state.

 

I used to freak out at my husband, and he would respond by handing me an individually-wrapped serving of cheese. "Eat this, and then we'll talk about it." Strangely enough, once I ate the cheese, the problem resolved itself.

 

So I agree with the advice to feed her rather than punish her, and to encourage her to develop skills for self-monitoring her physical state. Maybe keeping a "food/mood" log would be helpful, to help her begin to recognize connections between her diet (and sleep) and her moods.

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our child gets sent to her room for the rest of the day. I just can't tolerate it. No one else would tolerate it. So we lovingly send her to find her self-control for the rest of the day.

 

She used to get three warnings in hopes of avoiding the inevitable. But now that she's almost 10 it's an expectation that she will maintain her cool or remove herself until she's got it under control again.

 

She gets her meals and bathroom time. And hopefully she gets the message that her behaviour is not tolerated and certainly no one enjoys hanging out with her when she behaves that way. No attention.

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sigh....ok, I *did* sort of jump to the extreme end of things there at the end of my post, especially for a 10yo girl. I *did* qualify it by saying that she had NOT done anything to deserve this, in this instance anyway. I guess my point was that sometimes you have to be creative. And yes, I have an extremely strong willed boy (13) who occasionally gets a very "entitled" sort of attitude when it comes to "his" possessions, and "his" room (yeah, like who pays for your room, board, and possessions??"), and he has, on rare occasions, spent a night with his sleeping bag and pillow on the kitchen floor, and was a bit wiser and more reasonable child for having done so. So humble apologies to all for lofting a grenade to kill a gnat. Please, in grace, just mentally X out that whole last part where I forget I'm not dealing with *my* kid.

 

loving your wording there (where i bolded) :laugh:

 

...and this reads, to me, like a very graceful post. i suspect we can all give back the same and not tear your previous post to bits anymore. :cheers2:

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loving your wording there (where i bolded) :laugh:

 

...and this reads, to me, like a very graceful post. i suspect we can all give back the same and not tear your previous post to bits anymore. :cheers2:

 

 

:iagree:That was very well put!!! Grenade to kill a gnat...love it :)

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