Creative/ non "mean" discipline ideas?

Discussion in 'Parenting' started by MamaTheLama, May 10, 2004.

  1. MamaTheLama

    MamaTheLama Too much coffee

    ok.
    I have a teeny tiny problem.
    If I say "no" to my daughter in a firm voice she will stop breathing.
    Yep. She takes one look at me and then holds her breath until she passes out.

    I mean, come on, kids need to have SOME boundaries. but the passing out thing ... it terrifies me.

    Any other ideas to stop her from grabbing at things she can't have, etc?
    My house is baby proof, but we have to go out eventually and she's only going to get bigger.
     
  2. Mari

    Mari Member

    Do you give in when she does that?
     
  3. nimh

    nimh ~foodie~

    how old is she?
     
  4. nimh

    nimh ~foodie~

    Creative/non "mean" disipline ideas (since you asked! i love this list, print it out and put it up on your fridge.) Some of these ideas are meant for older kids and arent appropriate for toddlers. you know your kids better than anyone else does, so take what works for you and leave the rest...
    Twenty Alternatives to Punishment
    by
    Aletha Solter, Ph.D.

    1. LOOK FOR UNDERLYING NEEDS.
    example: Give your child something to play with while waiting in line.


    2. GIVE INFORMATION AND REASONS.
    example: If your child colors on the wall, explain why we color on paper only.


    3. LOOK FOR UNDERLYING FEELINGS.
    Acknowledge, accept & listen to feelings.
    example: If your child hits his baby sister, encourage him to express his anger and jealousy in harmless ways. He may need to cry or rage.


    4. CHANGE THE ENVIRONMENT.
    This is sometimes easier than trying to change the child.
    example: If your child repeatedly takes things out of the kitchen cupboards, put a childproof lock on them.


    5. FIND ACCEPTABLE ALTERNATIVES.
    Redirect your child's behavior.
    example: If you do not want your child to build a fort in the dining room, don't just say no. Tell her where she can build one.


    6. DEMONSTRATE HOW YOU WANT YOUR CHILD TO BEHAVE.
    example: If your child pulls a cat's tail, show her how to pet a cat. Do not rely on words alone.


    7. GIVE CHOICES RATHER THAN COMMANDS.
    Decision-making empowers children; commands invite a power struggle.
    example: "Would you like to brush your teeth before or after putting your pajamas on?"

    8. MAKE SMALL CONCESSIONS.
    example: "I'll let you skip brushing your teeth tonight because you are so tired."


    9. PROVIDE FOR A PERIOD OF PREPARATION.
    example: If you are counting on company for dinner, tell your child how you expect him to behave. Be specific. Role-playing can help prepare children for potentially difficult situations.


    10. LET NATURAL CONSEQUENCES OCCUR (when appropriate).
    Don't rescue too much.
    example: A child who does not hang up her bathing suit and towel may find them still wet the next day.


    11. COMMUNICATE YOUR OWN FEELINGS.
    Let children know how their behavior affects you.
    example: "I get so tired of cleaning up crumbs in the living room."

    12. USE ACTIONS WHEN NECESSARY.
    example: If your child insists on running across streets on your walks together, hold his hand tightly (while explaining the dangers).


    13. HOLD YOUR CHILD.
    Children who are acting aggressively or obnoxiously can benefit from holding, in a loving and supportive way, that allows them to channel their pent-up feelings into healing tears.


    14. REMOVE YOUR CHILD FROM THE SITUATION, AND STAY WITH HER.
    Use the time for listening, sharing feelings, holding, and conflict-resolution.


    15. DO IT TOGETHER, BE PLAYFUL.
    Many conflict situations can be turned into games.
    examples: "Let's pretend we're the seven dwarfs while we clean up," "Let's take turns brushing each other's teeth."


    16. DEFUSE THE SITUATION WITH LAUGHTER.
    example: If your child is mad at you, invite him to express his anger in a playful pillow fight with you. Play your part by surrendering dramatically. Laughter helps resolve anger and feelings of powerlessness.


    17. MAKE A DEAL, NEGOTIATE.
    example: If you're ready to leave the playground and your child is having fun, reach an agreement on the number of times she may go down the slide before leaving.

    18. DO MUTUAL CONFLICT-RESOLUTION.
    Discuss ongoing conflicts with your children, state your own needs, and ask for their help in finding solutions. Determine rules together. Hold family meetings.

    19. REVISE YOUR EXPECTATIONS.
    Young children have intense feelings and needs, and are naturally loud, curious, messy, willful, impatient, demanding, creative, forgetful, fearful, self-centered, and full of energy. Try to accept them as they are.


    20. TAKE A PARENTAL TIME-OUT.
    Leave the room, and do whatever is needed to regain your sense of composure and good judgment (example: call a friend, cry, meditate, take a shower).

    http://www.awareparenting.com/twenty.htm


    Ten Alternatives to Punishment
    by Jan Hunt

    Here are ten alternatives that give the child only positive, loving messages:

    1. Prevent unwanted behavior from occurring by meeting your child’s needs when they are first expressed. This is perhaps the very best approach. It not only prevents misbehavior, it tells the child that you truly love and care for her. With her current needs met, she is free to move on to the next stage of learning.

    2. Provide a safe, child-friendly environment. There is little point in having precious items within the reach of a toddler, when they can be put away until the child is old enough to handle them carefully. For older children, provide opportunities for active play.

    3. Apply the Golden Rule. Think about how you would like to be treated if you were to find yourself in the same circumstances as your child, then treat your child that way. Human nature is human nature, regardless of age.

    4. Show empathy for your child’s feelings. Even if the child’s behavior seems illogical, the underlying feelings and needs are real and need to be taken seriously. Saying things like, "You really look unhappy" is a good way to show a child that you care about their needs and feelings.

    5. Validate your child’s feelings so he knows that we understand and care, that it is acceptable to have whatever feelings are present, and that he will never be rejected for having any particular kinds of feelings. For example, "That scared me too."

    6. Meet the underlying need that led to the behavior in the first place. If we punish the outward behavior, the still unmet need will continually resurface in other ways until it is finally met. An example here would be, "Are you feeling sad because your friend moved away?"

    7. Stay on your child’s side. Whenever possible, find a "win-win" solution that meets everyone’s needs. To learn conflict resolution skills, consider a course in Nonviolent CommunicationSM.1

    8. Reassure your child that she is loved and appreciated. So-called bad behavior is often the child’s attempt to express her need for more love and attention, in the best way that she can at that moment. If she could express this need in a more mature way, she would do so. For example, you might ask, "Would you like to read a book with me so we can have some time together?"

    9. Provide positive alternative experiences and productive activities. Offer crayons, read a story, put a young child in the tub for water play, or enjoy a walk outside together. This can shift the focus away from a situation that has become too stressful to resolve at that moment: "Let’s make some play dough!"

    10. Ask yourself "Will I look back at this later and laugh?" If so, why not laugh now? Seize the opportunity to create the kind of memory you will want to have when you look back on this day. The most challenging situations can be defused by the timely use of good-natured humor: "Oh, no, you and your brother painted each other green? Wait, let me get the camera!"

    In these ways, we can best bring about the genuine cooperation that we seek. But our greatest reward will be a life-long, mutually loving and trusting bond with our child.


    http://www.naturalchild.org/home/
     
  5. Althea

    Althea Hip Forums Supporter HipForums Supporter

    [​IMG]

    Great lists, nimh! Reading them over I found that I do many of the things listed and they do work.

    A must for any parent's fridge!! :)
     
  6. MamaTheLama

    MamaTheLama Too much coffee

    I love the list.

    To answer some questions:
    She's a 1 year old, as in just learned how to run from room to room, as in just had a birthday this week...as in smashing leftover birthday cake all over her tray as I type this ;).

    And...
    For if I let her get away with it after the passing out thing...
    the passing out freaks her out just as much as it does me, and obviously she's not still grabbing for something if she's laying flat on the floor from having been unconcious... so, no, she doesn't get away with it, mainly because we're both distracted after the episode. But lord am I terrified to tell her "no" the next time.
     
  7. nimh

    nimh ~foodie~

    http://www.askdrsears.com/faq/db4.asp

    dr bob says
    yikes, the spells can continue for sev years!! wow. try not to let it freak you out too much (easier said than done i'm sure!)

    and a hint...if you redirect, then you dont have to say no. we had a 'yes environment' when ds was that age. we pointed him towards things that he could have or explore or whatever instead of just saying no all the time.

    and one finger touches too. he was a little over one year old at xmas time with all the fragile tree ornaments and lights and all that. we taught him how to touch things with one finger only around that time. that way he still got to explore things, and nothing got wrecked. he still asks if he can touch really fragile things with one finger only and he's 2 1/2 now.
     
  8. nimh

    nimh ~foodie~

  9. Brighid

    Brighid Member

    "If I say "no" to my daughter in a firm voice she will stop breathing.
    Yep. She takes one look at me and then holds her breath until she passes out."

    LOL! A woman of my own heart! I did the same thing when I was a baby, freaked my mother out. Obviously, I lived to tell about it. (And I no longer do it!)

    She won't do herself any damage, except maybe from falling, because she has to breathe again when she passes out.

    I love distraction! I used it with my kids when they were little. "Look at the giraffe!" I would say. Of course, there was no giraffe, but it got their attention for sure, just long enough to move the forbidden item away and replace it with something they could have.
     
  10. LaughinWillow

    LaughinWillow Member

    I was also going to suggest the cold water thing - it's an ancient Asian idea - that anger/distress is "hot," so the "cure" is "cold." When my daughter was smaller she would occasionally throw fits that would accelerate into hysterics and hyperventilating - a pan of cold water shocked her into calming down - and I don't think it's "mean" to get a little kid wet - especially if the alternative is letting her pass out from hysterics.
     
  11. MamaTheLama

    MamaTheLama Too much coffee

    I didn't really like the water idea, but the cool/cold part made sense, so yesterday when she stopped breathing I blew cool air in her face and it was enough to get her to start breathing again. Yay :)
    Now I just have to explain this to the babysitters, lol, wish me luck.
     
  12. sugrmag

    sugrmag Uber Nerd

    I'm glad you found a trick! That seems so scary; I don't know how I would handle seeing my babies pass out!
     

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