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I have a lively 5yo with the bad habit of whingeing, complaining, and dragging his feet.

 

Yes, I know this is probably all my fault so I am not making any excuses for myself. But I am in need of advice. How do you teach obedience to mum and dad?

 

I know lots of you use the Bible, but we run a secular home so I wold like to hear suggestions about teaching obedience in a secular way. Pretty please? ...and thank you! :)

 

:bigear:

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We had a similar problem at that age.

1. It does get better. :grouphug:

2. Pick your battles. Be very, very choosy, or else he will learn to tune you out. :glare:

3. Get down to his eye level and try to get his attention.

4. Some of these books may help. They helped us a bit, particularly the first one.

 

Shortcut by Donald Crews

The Story About Ping by Marjorie Flack and Kurt Wiese

A Pair of Red Clogs by Masako Matsuno

Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey

 

That's all I can think of for now.

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Here's what I used when I had littles running around my house. I found these in different parenting books and reworked them to fit us:

 

2. Turn a no into a yes - if you can make it a yes, try that. "No, not now" can be "Yes, after dinner" without changing your intent. All you do is give them a time frame, something more than a vague answer.

 

3. Focus on what you want more of - instead of "don't hit the kitty!!!!!" try "gentle touch, gentle" with your hand over theirs, helping. The first phrase you're telling them what not to do, which doesn't teach, the second phrase you're giving them an action to replace it. Most kids want to learn. It takes time, and much reinforcement, but they want to learn.

 

4. Teach cool down methods. What is a time out? If you were an adult, how would you feel being told to go sit in a corner by your boss? Angry, right? It wouldn't help to diffuse the feelings at all. Now, think of someone saying "hey, let's go sit over here and you can tell me about it" or "why don't you go take a walk and then come back?" Much easier on the emotions because you're getting yourself back into control, which is what a time out should be for. By putting the emphasis on control, you open yourself up to teaching a broader range of ideas to get there - sit for a cuddle, take a walk outside, discuss options your child could use to get the situation back under control - give him tools to use, not punishments to halt the process.

 

5. Empathy - "yeah, well, you knew better". Great. Thanks mom. See if I keep coming to you. "Oh, man...that's some trouble. Do you have any ideas on what to do now?" BAM! Conversation opens, communication opens, there's nothing in there to reinforce how bad he was, but how he's going to fix it. For a 2yo it can be as simple as "I know you wanted that candy bar." as long as you understand where they are coming from, why the tears are so ready, they're less likely to prolong the tantrum.

 

6. Doing because it needs to be done - "Would you" "I need you to" "Please..." all focus on one thing - the parent. It's easy to fight against a person because you don't want to do what they ask, or because it seems like it's a favor. But "You need to.." doesn't offer that. It just needs to happen because you're you and it needs to be done.

 

7. KISS - try for under 5 words. 2yos receptive vocabulary would be like your third year of high school spanish. You're catching the gist, but not all the words. Keep commands to 5 words or under "Put the blocks away" "Brush your teeth" and try as hard as possible to keep the "no" out of the beginning of a sentence - a 2yo hears "..........touch!" focusing on the last word.

 

8. Choices - give two acceptable ones, not false ones. "Clean your room or go to bed" is a false choice. It's set up for the child to pick only the one you want, there's no control for them there. "Which one - blocks or cars?" is a real choice that they can choose from to pick up first.

 

9. Give positive intent - even at their worst, they're at their best. I've heard this so many times and it's always at the time most needed that it's hardest to believe. Even when a child is doing wrong, they're looking for approval, love, and understanding. We can filter that out with empathy, trying to figure out what exactly was behind their action, and giving them skills to work with instead of focusing on the punishing side. They know they did wrong, they're just not sure what right is.

 

10. Natural/logical consequences - they work.

 

11. GOYB parenting. Say it once, help him as you say it again. If a request isn't being followed, don't give a second chance. Get up, walk over, and do with him exactly what needs to be done. The child realizes that you mean what you say and there is no getting out of it.

----------------------------------

 

 

These are just the ones that pertain directly to obedience. What it comes to is this: making them want to follow directions and trust you. You can play (think Mrs. Pigglewiggle stories), you can be enthusiastic, you can give direct facts.

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This is a ton of work but the only way that has ever worked fur us.

 

1. Save the actual commands for the really important (sort of like pick your battles)

 

2. If you choose a battle you must get compliance, even if you stand over them giving step by step instructions.

 

3. Consequences are known and reliable and instituted every time disobedience occurs. Then you apply that for 18 years.

 

4. Flop down exhausted but secure you did your best.

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This may be too obvious to mention, but since I see parents all the time who don't seem to be aware of this tactic I will go ahead and suggest to never, ever give your child the thing he/she whines for. That only reinforces the bad behavior. I see this at stores all the time - mom finally gives in to the whining and gives the child the toy, candy, balloon, whatever. Now the child knows that if they just keep it up long enough mom will break down and give in. Mom usually does this because she thinks everyone is staring and is irritated by her child's behavior and just wants to stop drawing attention to herself. I, for one, though, am very impressed by parents who just keep saying no and do not allow the child to control the situation. I expect to hear children whining in Walmart or the grocery store (they are often there after a long day at school or daycare and have only so much self-control) so it doesn't faze me one bit - I'm just glad to see a parent stand firm no matter what. Also, keep an even temperament and demeanor - in other words, do not react to their behavior - just calmly say no. Of course, this works at home as well.

 

Oh, and one more thing which kind of goes along with the above. Do not bribe your child to behave. They should behave well because you said so. I do suggest that you sympathize with your child verbally - say you understand that they want the toy/candy whatever; yes, it's nice or yes, it's delicious, but continue to stand firm.

 

Honestly, if you do this for just a little while, your child will soon learn that you mean it and will stop trying to use whining as a means to get what he/she wants. It's the in-between time that's difficult.

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Lily Grace's list is BEAUTIFUL :)

 

To number one, may I add in built-in logical consequences. "We can go to the park once your shoes are on."

 

Also, Moms tend to be VERY bossy for no particular reason. Seriously, our children are little people and except for a few extreme situations rarely need to be bossed around, told what to do, super-controlled by mom every few seconds. This is a hard one for me to balance as we are in one of those few extreme situations but still need to find ways for the kids to run their own lives a little more at a time because I still only have the same 16 to 21 years everyone else has to raise them...well, minus the first 3-5 years someone else chose NOT to raise them.

 

Having a protocol can help also. "Yes ma'am" or the kid knows that they comply first then can discuss it further with you if they still feel the need. Some people use "appeals." I think those are fine for most kids, but it may be wise to teach them to appeal IN the moment after you have taught them compliance.

 

And I simply cannot say it enough. If they know you will follow through EVERY time, they still start complying, when capable, the great majority of the time. Counting to three, giving two chances, warning over and over, threatening, bribing, etc simply tells the child you aren't serious when you open your mouth, but not until you get to a certain decibel level or the punishment.

 

Seriously, go back over Lily Grace's post. She wrote it so nicely and was so right - on.

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I have a lively 5yo with the bad habit of whingeing, complaining, and dragging his feet.

 

Yes, I know this is probably all my fault so I am not making any excuses for myself. But I am in need of advice. How do you teach obedience to mum and dad?

 

I know lots of you use the Bible, but we run a secular home so I wold like to hear suggestions about teaching obedience in a secular way. Pretty please? ...and thank you! :)

 

:bigear:

 

my 6 year old lives with you too? Mine is very confrontational and reactionary.

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Here's what I used when I had littles running around my house. I found these in different parenting books and reworked them to fit us:

 

I absolutely love the post. Thank you for taking the time to write it. I'm still going over it.

 

This is a ton of work but the only way that has ever worked fur us.

 

4. Flop down exhausted but secure you did your best.

 

Yes. You've nailed it. I want to flop down secure I did my best. I don't want to flop down feeling a complete failure!

 

my 6 year old lives with you too? Mine is very confrontational and reactionary.

 

:lol: Oh, dear. I'm not alone then.

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This is a ton of work but the only way that has ever worked fur us.

 

1. Save the actual commands for the really important (sort of like pick your battles)

 

2. If you choose a battle you must get compliance, even if you stand over them giving step by step instructions.

 

3. Consequences are known and reliable and instituted every time disobedience occurs. Then you apply that for 18 years.

 

4. Flop down exhausted but secure you did your best.

 

This is really all it takes for the vast majority of children. You can write on and on - entire books even - but it all comes down to this.

 

Dh was an incredibly successful special ed teacher, too, with dc who wouldn't behave for any other teacher, just by following this path. Only say what you mean, back it up with actions, and do it every time.

 

The other good news is that it nourishes your relationship in incredible ways. They can trust what you say, and the consequences come directly from their actions, not from you.

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Not sure if this will help but ...

I've noticed that when I was trying to get the kids to clean up their toys if I started singing the Barney song, "Clean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere. Clean up, clean up, everybody do their share," then the kids would just sort of automatically start cleaning up. So, I took the saying from the We Choose Virtue card for obedience, "OK, whatever you say, I will obey, right away," and made them memorize it (each morning at start of school during calendar time they had to practice saying it.) Now, when they don't listen the first time, I say the saying in a sing song voice and they start repeating the saying themselves and just sort of automatically start doing what I asked. It's like they've been conditioned and can't help themselves, they just have to obey even if they really don't want to. It's like their hypnotized! I wonder what else I could do? :lol:

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Not sure if this will help but ...

I've noticed that when I was trying to get the kids to clean up their toys if I started singing the Barney song, "Clean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere. Clean up, clean up, everybody do their share," then the kids would just sort of automatically start cleaning up. So, I took the saying from the We Choose Virtue card for obedience, "OK, whatever you say, I will obey, right away," and made them memorize it (each morning at start of school during calendar time they had to practice saying it.) Now, when they don't listen the first time, I say the saying in a sing song voice and they start repeating the saying themselves and just sort of automatically start doing what I asked. It's like they've been conditioned and can't help themselves, they just have to obey even if they really don't want to. It's like their hypnotized! I wonder what else I could do? :lol:

 

This reminds me of a phrase we used to say when mine were younger, "Work fast, work hard, get it done!" I would put some upbeat music on the CD player and then we'd plow through the task(s) all the while repeating this phrase.

 

If cleaning up toys is an issue be sure to allow only one toy out at a time. It is much more overwhelming to have to pick up a room that is completely strewn with toys than to simply put one thing back in the bin or on the shelf.

 

Also, I found that I had to stand over them when they were small. I couldn't walk out of the room, come back later and expect to see progress. Many times I would have to spell it out - pick up that book and put it on the shelf, hang your sweater on the hook, put your shoes in the closet, etc. until the room was back in order. It's tiring, but it works. The amazing thing is that once it gets to be a regular thing, the child learns what to do without mom being there and your job becomes infinitely easier. It's getting over that hump that can be discouraging.

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I have a lively 5yo with the bad habit of whingeing, complaining, and dragging his feet.

 

Yes, I know this is probably all my fault so I am not making any excuses for myself. But I am in need of advice. How do you teach obedience to mum and dad?

 

I know lots of you use the Bible, but we run a secular home so I wold like to hear suggestions about teaching obedience in a secular way. Pretty please? ...and thank you! :)

 

:bigear:

 

Clicker, treats and lots of short sessions in the parking lot across the street.

 

Oh. Wait. You weren't talking about dogs. :D

:leaving:

 

astrid

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Clicker, treats and lots of short sessions in the parking lot across the street.

 

Oh. Wait. You weren't talking about dogs. :D

:leaving:

 

astrid

 

:lol: Actually, Astrid, I read a dog training book years ago and as I was reading I kept thinking how remarkably similar it was to my child training books. Not across the board, obviously, but still very similar.

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11. GOYB parenting. Say it once, help him as you say it again. If a request isn't being followed, don't give a second chance. Get up, walk over, and do with him exactly what needs to be done. The child realizes that you mean what you say and there is no getting out of it.

Zactly.

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Here's what I used when I had littles running around my house. I found these in different parenting books and reworked them to fit us:

 

2. Turn a no into a yes - if you can make it a yes, try that. "No, not now" can be "Yes, after dinner" without changing your intent. All you do is give them a time frame, something more than a vague answer.

 

3. Focus on what you want more of - instead of "don't hit the kitty!!!!!" try "gentle touch, gentle" with your hand over theirs, helping. The first phrase you're telling them what not to do, which doesn't teach, the second phrase you're giving them an action to replace it. Most kids want to learn. It takes time, and much reinforcement, but they want to learn.

 

4. Teach cool down methods. What is a time out? If you were an adult, how would you feel being told to go sit in a corner by your boss? Angry, right? It wouldn't help to diffuse the feelings at all. Now, think of someone saying "hey, let's go sit over here and you can tell me about it" or "why don't you go take a walk and then come back?" Much easier on the emotions because you're getting yourself back into control, which is what a time out should be for. By putting the emphasis on control, you open yourself up to teaching a broader range of ideas to get there - sit for a cuddle, take a walk outside, discuss options your child could use to get the situation back under control - give him tools to use, not punishments to halt the process.

 

5. Empathy - "yeah, well, you knew better". Great. Thanks mom. See if I keep coming to you. "Oh, man...that's some trouble. Do you have any ideas on what to do now?" BAM! Conversation opens, communication opens, there's nothing in there to reinforce how bad he was, but how he's going to fix it. For a 2yo it can be as simple as "I know you wanted that candy bar." as long as you understand where they are coming from, why the tears are so ready, they're less likely to prolong the tantrum.

 

6. Doing because it needs to be done - "Would you" "I need you to" "Please..." all focus on one thing - the parent. It's easy to fight against a person because you don't want to do what they ask, or because it seems like it's a favor. But "You need to.." doesn't offer that. It just needs to happen because you're you and it needs to be done.

 

7. KISS - try for under 5 words. 2yos receptive vocabulary would be like your third year of high school spanish. You're catching the gist, but not all the words. Keep commands to 5 words or under "Put the blocks away" "Brush your teeth" and try as hard as possible to keep the "no" out of the beginning of a sentence - a 2yo hears "..........touch!" focusing on the last word.

 

8. Choices - give two acceptable ones, not false ones. "Clean your room or go to bed" is a false choice. It's set up for the child to pick only the one you want, there's no control for them there. "Which one - blocks or cars?" is a real choice that they can choose from to pick up first.

 

9. Give positive intent - even at their worst, they're at their best. I've heard this so many times and it's always at the time most needed that it's hardest to believe. Even when a child is doing wrong, they're looking for approval, love, and understanding. We can filter that out with empathy, trying to figure out what exactly was behind their action, and giving them skills to work with instead of focusing on the punishing side. They know they did wrong, they're just not sure what right is.

 

10. Natural/logical consequences - they work.

 

11. GOYB parenting. Say it once, help him as you say it again. If a request isn't being followed, don't give a second chance. Get up, walk over, and do with him exactly what needs to be done. The child realizes that you mean what you say and there is no getting out of it.

----------------------------------

 

 

These are just the ones that pertain directly to obedience. What it comes to is this: making them want to follow directions and trust you. You can play (think Mrs. Pigglewiggle stories), you can be enthusiastic, you can give direct facts.

 

:iagree:Yup, that's how we do it, too. It takes a lot of work when they are small. A lot. It's tiring.

 

I enlarged them. :D

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:lol: Actually, Astrid, I read a dog training book years ago and as I was reading I kept thinking how remarkably similar it was to my child training books. Not across the board, obviously, but still very similar.

 

Funny you should mention this...... I SWEAR that I have a really nice kid who is polite, respectful, kind, patient and never whines SPECIFICALLY because I trained dogs LONG before I had a child. I've always thought that the basic premises are the same, in my opinion:

NO means NO,

this is NOT a democracy,

consistency is vital,

liberal amoutns of GENUINE praise when warranted

lots of time for playing out in the fresh air

and above all,

love love love.

 

My dh always tells me I should write a parenting book for dog people. :001_smile:

 

astrid

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Did anyone else just learn how to spell "whinge"? I am amazed by what I learn here. :001_smile:

 

Lily Grace that is an awesome post! Number 1 was especially helpful for us. The more they hear the word "no" the more they will use it themselves. There's almost always a way to answer "no" with a "yes ...". :)

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i find that every time i read a parenting book, or hear helpful advice, or read it like here, it makes perfect logical lovely sense. then a week goes by and i have forgotten everything i read, heard etc. i am in the same boat as you, and i have read all the books, i just find it really HARD to take the time in the moment to step back and not react initially with a 'no' or some other non creative response.

 

it is nice to see all this advice in snippets, but i for one know that i have a hard time in the moment trying to remember, or taking time to pause and react differently. a little bit of gentleness of myself can go a long way too.

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Here's what I used when I had littles running around my house. I found these in different parenting books and reworked them to fit us:

 

2. Turn a no into a yes - if you can make it a yes, try that. "No, not now" can be "Yes, after dinner" without changing your intent. All you do is give them a time frame, something more than a vague answer.

 

3. Focus on what you want more of - instead of "don't hit the kitty!!!!!" try "gentle touch, gentle" with your hand over theirs, helping. The first phrase you're telling them what not to do, which doesn't teach, the second phrase you're giving them an action to replace it. Most kids want to learn. It takes time, and much reinforcement, but they want to learn.

 

4. Teach cool down methods. What is a time out? If you were an adult, how would you feel being told to go sit in a corner by your boss? Angry, right? It wouldn't help to diffuse the feelings at all. Now, think of someone saying "hey, let's go sit over here and you can tell me about it" or "why don't you go take a walk and then come back?" Much easier on the emotions because you're getting yourself back into control, which is what a time out should be for. By putting the emphasis on control, you open yourself up to teaching a broader range of ideas to get there - sit for a cuddle, take a walk outside, discuss options your child could use to get the situation back under control - give him tools to use, not punishments to halt the process.

 

5. Empathy - "yeah, well, you knew better". Great. Thanks mom. See if I keep coming to you. "Oh, man...that's some trouble. Do you have any ideas on what to do now?" BAM! Conversation opens, communication opens, there's nothing in there to reinforce how bad he was, but how he's going to fix it. For a 2yo it can be as simple as "I know you wanted that candy bar." as long as you understand where they are coming from, why the tears are so ready, they're less likely to prolong the tantrum.

 

6. Doing because it needs to be done - "Would you" "I need you to" "Please..." all focus on one thing - the parent. It's easy to fight against a person because you don't want to do what they ask, or because it seems like it's a favor. But "You need to.." doesn't offer that. It just needs to happen because you're you and it needs to be done.

 

7. KISS - try for under 5 words. 2yos receptive vocabulary would be like your third year of high school spanish. You're catching the gist, but not all the words. Keep commands to 5 words or under "Put the blocks away" "Brush your teeth" and try as hard as possible to keep the "no" out of the beginning of a sentence - a 2yo hears "..........touch!" focusing on the last word.

 

8. Choices - give two acceptable ones, not false ones. "Clean your room or go to bed" is a false choice. It's set up for the child to pick only the one you want, there's no control for them there. "Which one - blocks or cars?" is a real choice that they can choose from to pick up first.

 

9. Give positive intent - even at their worst, they're at their best. I've heard this so many times and it's always at the time most needed that it's hardest to believe. Even when a child is doing wrong, they're looking for approval, love, and understanding. We can filter that out with empathy, trying to figure out what exactly was behind their action, and giving them skills to work with instead of focusing on the punishing side. They know they did wrong, they're just not sure what right is.

 

10. Natural/logical consequences - they work.

 

11. GOYB parenting. Say it once, help him as you say it again. If a request isn't being followed, don't give a second chance. Get up, walk over, and do with him exactly what needs to be done. The child realizes that you mean what you say and there is no getting out of it.

----------------------------------

 

 

These are just the ones that pertain directly to obedience. What it comes to is this: making them want to follow directions and trust you. You can play (think Mrs. Pigglewiggle stories), you can be enthusiastic, you can give direct facts.

Oh, good list, way to put it succinctly! I'm going to print this for dh , who doesn't have the patience or time to read parenting books but is sure striving to be more patient(as am I)!

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I learned it while watching "Changing Rooms," the BBC show that the U.S. copied with "Trading Spaces." :D

 

So the UK had the original of that show? Cool! I can see why they changed the name when they brought it over here - changing rooms are another term for fitting rooms, where you try on clothes in a store. :lol:

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Oh, good list, way to put it succinctly! I'm going to print this for dh , who doesn't have the patience or time to read parenting books but is sure striving to be more patient(as am I)!

 

:lol: I just copied it and emailed it to dh! He read it and said "Wow! where was this 13-15 yrs ago?" I laughed and told him that I had been following most of that advice since the kids were born, but screwed up at #8, and 9, which I think are key! I also sent him fairfarmhand's advice about giving them one chance to do it, and then taking them by the hand and making them do it. I've been trying to drive that point home for years. Sometimes it just needs to be said by someone else! :lol:

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Not sure if this will help but ...

I've noticed that when I was trying to get the kids to clean up their toys if I started singing the Barney song, "Clean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere. Clean up, clean up, everybody do their share," then the kids would just sort of automatically start cleaning up. So, I took the saying from the We Choose Virtue card for obedience, "OK, whatever you say, I will obey, right away," and made them memorize it (each morning at start of school during calendar time they had to practice saying it.) Now, when they don't listen the first time, I say the saying in a sing song voice and they start repeating the saying themselves and just sort of automatically start doing what I asked. It's like they've been conditioned and can't help themselves, they just have to obey even if they really don't want to. It's like their hypnotized! I wonder what else I could do? :lol:

 

Uhm... singing? I like the idea!

 

This reminds me of a phrase we used to say when mine were younger, "Work fast, work hard, get it done!" I would put some upbeat music on the CD player and then we'd plow through the task(s) all the while repeating this phrase.

 

If cleaning up toys is an issue be sure to allow only one toy out at a time. It is much more overwhelming to have to pick up a room that is completely strewn with toys than to simply put one thing back in the bin or on the shelf.

 

Also, I found that I had to stand over them when they were small. I couldn't walk out of the room, come back later and expect to see progress. Many times I would have to spell it out - pick up that book and put it on the shelf, hang your sweater on the hook, put your shoes in the closet, etc. until the room was back in order. It's tiring, but it works. The amazing thing is that once it gets to be a regular thing, the child learns what to do without mom being there and your job becomes infinitely easier. It's getting over that hump that can be discouraging.

True, if I leave the room nothing gets done. Maybe I was expecting too much of a 5yo? I will stay in ds's room while he picks up his things and guide him all the way step-by-step!

 

Clicker, treats and lots of short sessions in the parking lot across the street.

 

Oh. Wait. You weren't talking about dogs. :D

:leaving:

 

astrid

Hey, if it works. I don't mind using a clicker :D

 

 

So the UK had the original of that show? Cool! I can see why they changed the name when they brought it over here - changing rooms are another term for fitting rooms' date=' where you try on clothes in a store. :lol:[/quote']

Check out the BBC version on youtube. It had the most amazing, camp, glamour rock dresser presenter/designer (Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen).

 

BTW, what is GOYB?

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Okay. The GOYB approach is what I've always tried to do, but I have one kid...if I gently and calmly take him by the hand to make him do something he doesn't want to, he will immediately have a complete and utter flip-out tantrum/meltdown.

 

I'm talking flailing, kicking, hitting, and screaming gibberish. It's like he goes temporarily completely insane. He's 3 and a half, and has been like this since birth.

 

This is embarrassing to admit, but I let more stuff slide than I should, because I have a baby to take care of and an older one to teach, and also because I am so...SOOO...tired. I know I'm shooting myself in the foot here by not addressing it better and I feel more than a little incompetent for having to ask this. But how do you gently discipline and guide a child who loses his mind?

 

He does not respond to logic. He does not deal well (understatement, lol) with being made to do as he's told. Time-out and time-in are equally ineffective.

 

He is for the most part a really sweet, smart, adorable, funny kid. But try and get him to do something he doesn't want, or take no for an answer...and all you-know-what breaks loose. :001_huh: I'm not a pushover and I can outlast him, but it means completely neglecting my other kids for the time it takes to get him under control. What am I supposed to do? If I gear up for battle and become INSANELY CONSISTENT...will he get better? Or am I going to be spending 85% of my time enforcing his behaviour for all eternity?

 

Really sorry for the threadjack OP! It's been an AWFUL morning and I'm feeling kind of desperate. :crying:

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Make rules that are simple and easy to understand. Make the consequences to breaking the rules clear and follow through every time. Fewer rules with consistent consequences seem to work better.

 

We don't punish our kids for childish, thoughtless behavior. Those are teaching moments--not moments to punish a child. An example would be whining: I don't respond to it, so the kids learn quickly to edit themselves. We do tend to implement harsher discipline for lying, stealing or unkindness. This really doesn't have to have anything to do with Christianity, because in order to thrive in our society, honesty, morality and kindness are universally important.

 

It's really about simplicity and consistency. Figure out what your family values, and make simple rules that support those values. The trick to teaching obedience to the rules is making them easily understood and making the consequences predictable.

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Such great advice.

 

Whatever you choose,

 

Consistency

 

and

 

Follow Through

 

Do not make empty threats. If you say "If you do not stop crying by the time I count to 3 we are leaving gymnastics" and they don't stop, you pick them up, look at the teacher and say " I am sorry that so and so has made the choice not to be in class this week, we will see you next week" and leave. Even though you paid for class, even if you had plans after. If you always follow through your kids will believe you and that makes life a lot easier.

 

I hear so many parents saying "I am not going to tell you again." "If you don't stop we are leaving." etc... and no follow through, so the kids don't believe their parents.

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Okay. The GOYB approach is what I've always tried to do, but I have one kid...if I gently and calmly take him by the hand to make him do something he doesn't want to, he will immediately have a complete and utter flip-out tantrum/meltdown.

 

I'm talking flailing, kicking, hitting, and screaming gibberish. It's like he goes temporarily completely insane. He's 3 and a half, and has been like this since birth.

 

This is embarrassing to admit, but I let more stuff slide than I should, because I have a baby to take care of and an older one to teach, and also because I am so...SOOO...tired. I know I'm shooting myself in the foot here by not addressing it better and I feel more than a little incompetent for having to ask this. But how do you gently discipline and guide a child who loses his mind?

 

He does not respond to logic. He does not deal well (understatement, lol) with being made to do as he's told. Time-out and time-in are equally ineffective.

 

He is for the most part a really sweet, smart, adorable, funny kid. But try and get him to do something he doesn't want, or take no for an answer...and all you-know-what breaks loose. :001_huh: I'm not a pushover and I can outlast him, but it means completely neglecting my other kids for the time it takes to get him under control. What am I supposed to do? If I gear up for battle and become INSANELY CONSISTENT...will he get better? Or am I going to be spending 85% of my time enforcing his behaviour for all eternity?

 

Really sorry for the threadjack OP! It's been an AWFUL morning and I'm feeling kind of desperate. :crying:

 

 

getting off your butt does not always mean "physically make them do it" . Getting off your butt means asking yourself if what you are expecting is age appropriate & if not - handle it in a different way that IS age appropriate. GOYB means figuring out a way that your child WILL respond to. GOYB means actively getting to know your child & using phrases or actions that he will follow.

If I told my 3 year old to "pick up your toys" - he'd probably say "I can't!!" & GOYB does not mean that I then get up & physically make him pick each toy up...no GOYB means I get up, use some playful parenting ("let me see how you put the red truck up on that shelf...or let's play drive the trains into the basket") etc. Or actually help him put all the toys away together b/c , depending on the amount of toys out - it can be too overwhelming for a 3 year old to pick it up all by himself. And GOYB parenting for the next play session is to limit the amount of toys he's allowed to get out.

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getting off your butt does not always mean "physically make them do it" . Getting off your butt means asking yourself if what you are expecting is age appropriate & if not - handle it in a different way that IS age appropriate. GOYB means figuring out a way that your child WILL respond to. GOYB means actively getting to know your child & using phrases or actions that he will follow.

 

:thumbup1:

 

Great post!

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Okay. The GOYB approach is what I've always tried to do, but I have one kid...if I gently and calmly take him by the hand to make him do something he doesn't want to, he will immediately have a complete and utter flip-out tantrum/meltdown.

 

I'm talking flailing, kicking, hitting, and screaming gibberish. It's like he goes temporarily completely insane. He's 3 and a half, and has been like this since birth.

 

This is embarrassing to admit, but I let more stuff slide than I should, because I have a baby to take care of and an older one to teach, and also because I am so...SOOO...tired. I know I'm shooting myself in the foot here by not addressing it better and I feel more than a little incompetent for having to ask this. But how do you gently discipline and guide a child who loses his mind?

 

He does not respond to logic. He does not deal well (understatement, lol) with being made to do as he's told. Time-out and time-in are equally ineffective.

 

He is for the most part a really sweet, smart, adorable, funny kid. But try and get him to do something he doesn't want, or take no for an answer...and all you-know-what breaks loose. :001_huh: I'm not a pushover and I can outlast him, but it means completely neglecting my other kids for the time it takes to get him under control. What am I supposed to do? If I gear up for battle and become INSANELY CONSISTENT...will he get better? Or am I going to be spending 85% of my time enforcing his behaviour for all eternity?

 

Really sorry for the threadjack OP! It's been an AWFUL morning and I'm feeling kind of desperate. :crying:

 

That's my middle dd. We swung back and forth between, "She needs psychiatric help," and "Okay, we can do this," all day every day. :D The good AND bad news is that the same thing (say what you mean, do what you say, do it every single time) worked, we just had to expend a LOT more energy. It took consistency over many, many years. But she is lovely now. :001_smile:

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getting off your butt does not always mean "physically make them do it" . Getting off your butt means asking yourself if what you are expecting is age appropriate & if not - handle it in a different way that IS age appropriate. GOYB means figuring out a way that your child WILL respond to. GOYB means actively getting to know your child & using phrases or actions that he will follow.

If I told my 3 year old to "pick up your toys" - he'd probably say "I can't!!" & GOYB does not mean that I then get up & physically make him pick each toy up...no GOYB means I get up, use some playful parenting ("let me see how you put the red truck up on that shelf...or let's play drive the trains into the basket") etc. Or actually help him put all the toys away together b/c , depending on the amount of toys out - it can be too overwhelming for a 3 year old to pick it up all by himself. And GOYB parenting for the next play session is to limit the amount of toys he's allowed to get out.

 

Yes, I totally get that and work very hard to have the house and our schedule set up for his success. Very, very hard. But I'm talking here about immediate, 'risk to himself of others' type stuff here. "Get off the baby!", or "Stop, that's a road!", or "Don't touch the stove!". Or less dangerous but immediately problematic behaviour like taking toys away from someone else. I stop an unacceptable behavior or enforce a truly necessary one, and he FREAKS OUT.

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That's my middle dd. We swung back and forth between, "She needs psychiatric help," and "Okay, we can do this," all day every day. :D The good AND bad news is that the same thing (say what you mean, do what you say, do it every single time) worked, we just had to expend a LOT more energy. It took consistency over many, many years. But she is lovely now. :001_smile:

 

Thank you!! That swing between things not being so bad and feeling like we wrecked our kid is EXACTLY how I feel.

 

I guess we'll keep on keeping on. This child has always exhausted me. He's an intense little guy.

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First, know that the majority of kids will turn out "just fine" regardless. I think worrying didn't do me any good and that parenting in fear actually caused more problems.

 

Here are a few ideas:

 

*Schedules and routines are SUPER helpful.

 

* World stops - Nothing else (other than meals, breathing, and pottying) happens until compliance is given.

 

* A game, song, etc. I wanted my 6yo to quit finishing her food in less than half the time it took me to eat. I had her "win" by finishing AFTER her 3yo brother who we were trying to get to eat at decent speed. "I can get mine and the baby's shoes on before YOU can get YOUR shoes on!" Silly OFTEN works. Rolling, bunny hopping, or being Lightening McQueen are all great ways to get somewhere (bed, bath, etc).

 

* A time limit - Though my son was delayed, I could use this by saying, "before the big hand gets to the six" (point out the six if you need to). Give PLENTY of time so he has time to wrap his head around the command rather than it being a race. This worked 99% of the time I used it with ds.

 

* Make choices or assume the need for help in the original way to state most requests. If you go get his shoes and go to put them on him, he'll likely balk saying HE can do it. Or if you ask, "do you want to walk to the bathroom, bunny hop, or have me carry you so you can get a shower?" You may pick up the toys before supper or after supper, for another example.

 

* Build in logical consequences. Snack time is after clean up time. Showers are before story times. Shoes before outside time.

 

*Make sure to limit your orders! No bossy mama syndrome :) But follow through on the orders you do give!

 

* PRactice when it can be fun. Do it on things that are more fun. When I was boundary training my kids (we lived on a street people regularly went 40-60mph even though it was a subdivision street), we jump turned, ran up to the line, walked just this side of the line, rode bikes to the line, etc. They practiced at a more strict line if they broke the rule. But we kept it fun. I had one lady call her son to which he was supposed to walk quickly to her answering "yes mom" each time. We would do it all sorts of ways, including him hiding, him making noise, her moving locations, etc.

Raising a Thinking Child has lots of fun stuff also. As kids learn better thinking and problem solving skills, they make much more sense of the world and drive us batty less :)

 

HTHs,

Edited by 2J5M9K
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A big thing here I have realized is that kids model our behavior. Not just how we treat them but how we treat each other and others out of the house. Also, like a lot of things to do it well there is a lot of investment up front- a lot of time and energy but the more you put in and the more consistent you are the less headaches there are later. Much like my house. Getting and keeping it clean is much easier than deciding once a week to rescue it and freak out. If you continually ignore the little behaviors then just freak out all of a sudden at the big ones you are creating a lot more work and not really getting at the root of the problem. It takes work day and day out and no off time.

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But I'm talking here about immediate, 'risk to himself of others' type stuff here. "Get off the baby!", or "Stop, that's a road!", or "Don't touch the stove!"

 

Honestly? I'd just let him have the display of emotions. In time, he'll not get so freaked out. Or he'll be like me and STILL get freaked out, but be better able to handle it. But what is MOST important is that the situation is resolved. He may not comply on his own. He's THREE. But that extra second he is on the baby isn't likely to hurt her more than she's already hurt with him having gotten on her. Just move him.

 

Now with the road, it may be necessary to come up with some other ways of dealing (practicing, how he can recognize a road, not scaring cars, using a tether, etc). However, in the end, you yell (though it is actually better NOT to unless the word is STOP and only STOP because the rest sounds like cheering to a young child).

 

Don't touch the stove may mean blocking off the kitchen, keeping him far away, having him coloring at the table or sitting on a different counter if he's helping. In the end, you probably will bat his hand away if he does manage to get there. If he doesn't like it, oh well, as neither of y'all will like the burns and burn care if he touches it.

 

Anyway, all the non-emergency stuff IS easier. But though I'd try to prevent issues and such, I wouldn't worry as much about the melt-down if he doesn't like your life/health saving moves.

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I run a secular household too, but I've got to recommend the Raising Godly Tomatoes website. I learned so much from this experienced Mom. Take what you can use and ignore the rest. What I learned from her is just what consistency REALLY looks like. I also learned the vital importance of prevention when it comes to conflict and tantrums, and of my own behavior and feelings when it comes to discipline. I was forced to recognize that I had sometimes chosen emotional manipulation as a means of discipline and I had to change.

 

I did not learn this early enough and my eldest, honestly, is suffering for it, because he is really lacking in self-discipline compared to his siblings. What is most important is that you never, ever lose a battle of wills. Avoid the battles, choose them very wisely, but in the end, there will be battles and you absolutely must win.

 

I think I've told this story before, but to illustrate I'll tell it again. When my 10 yo was 1, maybe 13 months, I asked him to put away his toys before I lifted him out of the bathtub. They were supposed to be in a little bucket on the side of the tub. He strongly protested, yelled, cried, repeatedly reached up to me. He threw the toys. My husband came to investigate! It must have lasted for about 10 minutes, during which I just calmly, repeated and demonstrated to him-put away the toys. Then, the crying shut off abruptly, he put away every toy, and smiled at me.

 

What I learned from this is that one major battle of wills will prevent a hundred future ones over bigger, stickier issues. He's not prefect, but he really is a pretty happy and compliant kid, and definitely knows his own mind. What I disregard from the Raising Godly Tomatoes site is the really (in my mind) too rigid insistence on obedience above all else. I want them to learn to think for themselves too.

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Honestly? I'd just let him have the display of emotions. In time, he'll not get so freaked out. Or he'll be like me and STILL get freaked out, but be better able to handle it...

....Don't touch the stove may mean blocking off the kitchen, keeping him far away, having him coloring at the table or sitting on a different counter if he's helping. In the end, you probably will bat his hand away if he does manage to get there. If he doesn't like it, oh well, as neither of y'all will like the burns and burn care if he touches it.

 

Anyway, all the non-emergency stuff IS easier. But though I'd try to prevent issues and such, I wouldn't worry as much about the melt-down if he doesn't like your life/health saving moves.

 

Thanks for your help, Pamela. I do a lot of prevention but obviously don't always succeed. The problem (I'm not explaining well I think), is not that I'm upset about him having a tantrum. He doesn't STOP what he's doing and melt down - he melts down while trying with every fiber of his being to KEEP DOING IT. So if it was the road, I could grab him and stop him, and he will lose his mind and scream and flail and wrench away TRYING TO GET BACK THERE. If I make him give back a toy he snatched from someone, he will freak out while trying to get it back. I have to sit there and hang onto him while he melts down in order to stop him from going right back to the offending behaviour. Eventually he calms down. It can take a while...sometimes a LONG while.

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and you know what?- just let him have those emotions. There is nothing wrong with a 3yr old having a huge reaction to a boundary or rule. What's wrong is if he's allowed to continue to do what he wants b/c your're too afraid of it.

I had to learn this b/c my son is very intense with his emotions. Don't be afraid of your 3yr old's HUGE EMOTIONS. And you are doing the right thing by holding him, even a gentle restraint if need be while he has his meltdown. 3 yrs old was a very hard year for us - but it will get better!

 

Also, mine was a runner & as much as I hated to admit it, I needed one of those monkey leash thingy's for him. And it taught him to stay close to mama. Sometimes it's about prevention until they are ready to comprehend "don't run into the street"

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So the UK had the original of that show? Cool!

Yes' date=' except it was half an hour, not a whole hour.

 

I can see why they changed the name when they brought it over here - changing rooms are another term for fitting rooms, where you try on clothes in a store. :lol:

That would be funny. :lol:

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Here's what I used when I had littles running around my house. I found these in different parenting books and reworked them to fit us:

 

2. Turn a no into a yes - if you can make it a yes, try that. "No, not now" can be "Yes, after dinner" without changing your intent. All you do is give them a time frame, something more than a vague answer.

 

3. Focus on what you want more of - instead of "don't hit the kitty!!!!!" try "gentle touch, gentle" with your hand over theirs, helping. The first phrase you're telling them what not to do, which doesn't teach, the second phrase you're giving them an action to replace it. Most kids want to learn. It takes time, and much reinforcement, but they want to learn.

 

4. Teach cool down methods. What is a time out? If you were an adult, how would you feel being told to go sit in a corner by your boss? Angry, right? It wouldn't help to diffuse the feelings at all. Now, think of someone saying "hey, let's go sit over here and you can tell me about it" or "why don't you go take a walk and then come back?" Much easier on the emotions because you're getting yourself back into control, which is what a time out should be for. By putting the emphasis on control, you open yourself up to teaching a broader range of ideas to get there - sit for a cuddle, take a walk outside, discuss options your child could use to get the situation back under control - give him tools to use, not punishments to halt the process.

 

5. Empathy - "yeah, well, you knew better". Great. Thanks mom. See if I keep coming to you. "Oh, man...that's some trouble. Do you have any ideas on what to do now?" BAM! Conversation opens, communication opens, there's nothing in there to reinforce how bad he was, but how he's going to fix it. For a 2yo it can be as simple as "I know you wanted that candy bar." as long as you understand where they are coming from, why the tears are so ready, they're less likely to prolong the tantrum.

 

6. Doing because it needs to be done - "Would you" "I need you to" "Please..." all focus on one thing - the parent. It's easy to fight against a person because you don't want to do what they ask, or because it seems like it's a favor. But "You need to.." doesn't offer that. It just needs to happen because you're you and it needs to be done.

 

7. KISS - try for under 5 words. 2yos receptive vocabulary would be like your third year of high school spanish. You're catching the gist, but not all the words. Keep commands to 5 words or under "Put the blocks away" "Brush your teeth" and try as hard as possible to keep the "no" out of the beginning of a sentence - a 2yo hears "..........touch!" focusing on the last word.

 

8. Choices - give two acceptable ones, not false ones. "Clean your room or go to bed" is a false choice. It's set up for the child to pick only the one you want, there's no control for them there. "Which one - blocks or cars?" is a real choice that they can choose from to pick up first.

 

9. Give positive intent - even at their worst, they're at their best. I've heard this so many times and it's always at the time most needed that it's hardest to believe. Even when a child is doing wrong, they're looking for approval, love, and understanding. We can filter that out with empathy, trying to figure out what exactly was behind their action, and giving them skills to work with instead of focusing on the punishing side. They know they did wrong, they're just not sure what right is.

 

10. Natural/logical consequences - they work.

 

11. GOYB parenting. Say it once, help him as you say it again. If a request isn't being followed, don't give a second chance. Get up, walk over, and do with him exactly what needs to be done. The child realizes that you mean what you say and there is no getting out of it.

----------------------------------

 

 

These are just the ones that pertain directly to obedience. What it comes to is this: making them want to follow directions and trust you. You can play (think Mrs. Pigglewiggle stories), you can be enthusiastic, you can give direct facts.

 

 

Wise words!!

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11. GOYB parenting. Say it once, help him as you say it again. If a request isn't being followed, don't give a second chance. Get up, walk over, and do with him exactly what needs to be done. The child realizes that you mean what you say and there is no getting out of it.

 

All of the points, but especially this one. GOYB has really helped my dd's attitude improve. I used to say something three times and then get upset when it wasn't done. Now, I go over and help my youngest out. GOYB helps with my oldest as well.

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Here's what I used when I had littles running around my house. I found these in different parenting books and reworked them to fit us:

 

2. Turn a no into a yes - if you can make it a yes, try that. "No, not now" can be "Yes, after dinner" without changing your intent. All you do is give them a time frame, something more than a vague answer.

 

3. Focus on what you want more of - instead of "don't hit the kitty!!!!!" try "gentle touch, gentle" with your hand over theirs, helping. The first phrase you're telling them what not to do, which doesn't teach, the second phrase you're giving them an action to replace it. Most kids want to learn. It takes time, and much reinforcement, but they want to learn.

 

4. Teach cool down methods. What is a time out? If you were an adult, how would you feel being told to go sit in a corner by your boss? Angry, right? It wouldn't help to diffuse the feelings at all. Now, think of someone saying "hey, let's go sit over here and you can tell me about it" or "why don't you go take a walk and then come back?" Much easier on the emotions because you're getting yourself back into control, which is what a time out should be for. By putting the emphasis on control, you open yourself up to teaching a broader range of ideas to get there - sit for a cuddle, take a walk outside, discuss options your child could use to get the situation back under control - give him tools to use, not punishments to halt the process.

 

5. Empathy - "yeah, well, you knew better". Great. Thanks mom. See if I keep coming to you. "Oh, man...that's some trouble. Do you have any ideas on what to do now?" BAM! Conversation opens, communication opens, there's nothing in there to reinforce how bad he was, but how he's going to fix it. For a 2yo it can be as simple as "I know you wanted that candy bar." as long as you understand where they are coming from, why the tears are so ready, they're less likely to prolong the tantrum.

 

6. Doing because it needs to be done - "Would you" "I need you to" "Please..." all focus on one thing - the parent. It's easy to fight against a person because you don't want to do what they ask, or because it seems like it's a favor. But "You need to.." doesn't offer that. It just needs to happen because you're you and it needs to be done.

 

7. KISS - try for under 5 words. 2yos receptive vocabulary would be like your third year of high school spanish. You're catching the gist, but not all the words. Keep commands to 5 words or under "Put the blocks away" "Brush your teeth" and try as hard as possible to keep the "no" out of the beginning of a sentence - a 2yo hears "..........touch!" focusing on the last word.

 

8. Choices - give two acceptable ones, not false ones. "Clean your room or go to bed" is a false choice. It's set up for the child to pick only the one you want, there's no control for them there. "Which one - blocks or cars?" is a real choice that they can choose from to pick up first.

 

9. Give positive intent - even at their worst, they're at their best. I've heard this so many times and it's always at the time most needed that it's hardest to believe. Even when a child is doing wrong, they're looking for approval, love, and understanding. We can filter that out with empathy, trying to figure out what exactly was behind their action, and giving them skills to work with instead of focusing on the punishing side. They know they did wrong, they're just not sure what right is.

 

10. Natural/logical consequences - they work.

 

11. GOYB parenting. Say it once, help him as you say it again. If a request isn't being followed, don't give a second chance. Get up, walk over, and do with him exactly what needs to be done. The child realizes that you mean what you say and there is no getting out of it.

----------------------------------

 

 

These are just the ones that pertain directly to obedience. What it comes to is this: making them want to follow directions and trust you. You can play (think Mrs. Pigglewiggle stories), you can be enthusiastic, you can give direct facts.

 

 

 

What was #1?

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