Wednesday, November 19, 2008

More Thoughts on Disciplining

Thank you to reader Terri regarding the advice on Emily's behavior. I will try holding her in my lap. That probably is the only way to ensure that she actually stays in timeout. I probably shouldn't jump to a conclusion right now about whether she might be strong-willed. Maybe it's just the change in routine and her feeling powerless over it. Routine helps curb so much misbehavior, with all my kids. But life happens.

I don't know why the boys were relatively easy going at age two. When Daniel was two we lived in a housing track in California which featured a park about five houses down. Since Daniel was so active we took him there nearly daily. I think that curbed a lot of bad behavior. I wasn't sure he had any problems (such as ADHD) at that time, but I know going to the park helped a lot with our sanity. Looking back, it was the best thing to channel his energy. Research shows that hyperactive kids require a lot of exercise and time outdoors. It has been tougher here with Daniel, since the nearest park is fifteen minutes away, and the weather isn't always conducive to a neighborhood bike ride. We have a stationary cross-country ski exerciser, which we will have to take out often this winter. Trouble is, it has to be away from Emily, as it could potentially injure her. Our bedrooms are pitifully small, but it might be a necessity to squeeze it in one of them. Already, we are facing taking our master bedroom dresser out to make room for the baby's crib. LOL It should be interesting. I'm actually thinking of putting it in the dining room, since the laundry room is in there behind some bifold doors. It will be strange looking, but convenient for putting clean clothes away. I know a family in California that is raising 11 children in a three bedroom house. They put all the children, except the three oldest, in one bedroom, dorm room style. The room contains only bunkbeds. Large families do what they have to do. It is kind of comical sometimes.

Daniel really gave us some trouble when I was having morning sickness. I am dreading what changes might come up with him when the baby comes. He has been fairly easy-going about this bedrest. I'm actually more available to the kids on bedrest, since I'm not doing many chores and very little food prep.

Don and I were very compliant children; Timmy seems to be more like us. He's so much easier, generally speaking, that I think he probably gets neglected. We are both mindful of that and try to single him out for extra time whenever possible.

I don't know much about spanking in relation to strong-willed children. What I heard about it was actually on a Christian radio show I listened to a few years back featuring Cynthia Tobias, a Christian mom and writer, who was formerly a strong-willed child herself. She has at least one strong-willed child so she wrote a book about it. I can't remember very much of what she shared, but it seemed like she thought spanking caused the child to become more angry, prolonging the discipline encounter. Kids are all so different.

I actually don't disagree with spanking at all. But I have a couple of Dr. Dobson books that give reasons why it doesn't work with ADHD children. It makes things worse with Daniel. I like using the quickest road to remorse, which for him is time out in his bedroom. He has a relationship with God now, definitely, and that helps a whole lot. He more readily accepts his obligation to respect our authority. The AWANA verses he's learning help a lot too. Scripture stays with him, thank the Lord.

Anyway, Terri, thanks so much for commenting. I love hearing from other moms!


Evenspor said...

We've used "1-2-3 Magic" with Beeper, and it has worked fairly well. I don't think he'd qualify as "spirited" but he's definitely not an easy-going child either. He's high-energy, I think. If you want to try this one, I'd recommend just getting the book and reading it, because there's a lot of little things mentioned that make the method work better. It also addresses things like what to do with children who don't stay in their rooms.

Andrew & Terri said...

Wow...I never expected a whole post in response to my comments. Let us know how the lap thing goes (although it might not be that advisable for you right now!)

I did want to clarify that I don't know anything about disciplining an ADHD child in the home, so I haven't a clue about spanking in that case. I had plenty of ADHD students, but we certainly had to work things out in other ways in the classroom! ;) I know that the same thing doesn't work for every child, but I guess I was trying to make the point that IMO she's not too *young* for spanking, if you decide to go that route. It has worked for us and I will say that I rarely have to spank now (unless I've fallen down on the job for a few days!)

God bless!