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  1. #1
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    Default Cold Turkey discipline?

    My son is nearly two and a half. He has always been extremely hard work but lately his behaviour is out of control bad. I take a lot of responsibility for this as I am just crap at hard discipline. I often give in to tantrums and of course it has come back to bite me. I am 7 months pregnant and have been vomiting since 6 weeks and I'm still working (finish at 38 weeks). My patience is very very poor right now and I get so frustrated at his nonsense. I know I have to get much stricter with discipline. However I'm worried that if I suddenly get really tough it might stress him out more. I think I should start with things like the supermarket. Every time we go I end up buying him a lollipop or something to avoid a screaming match or I will buy him one as a reward if he's been good. But this is obviously not good. Should I just all of a sudden insist no treat at the supermarket or is that just too mean since he's so used to it? What else can I do? This is just one example. He has also started yelling no in a voice that I just can't handle - I hate it. He gets a warning and then gets sent to his room if he says it again. I've just started this too. He is frustrating me all the time lately over everything- I am having trouble working out what I should dismiss as normal toddler behaviour and what I should be tough about. Is it ok to start being a much tougher parent all of a sudden? I'm doing so as this recent bout of shocking behaviour started suddenly too. I'm so confused with this whole toddler business. Any advice?

  2. #2
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    You sound like you are doing it really tough right now . I do not envy you your situation.
    Suddenly introducing a stricter system will not hurt him. Normal toddler bahaviour is not really always something that should be let go. Biting is somewhat normal for toddlers but shouldnt be dismissed. Sit down and make out a definate system. Work out what is unacceptable, how many warnings he should get and what the consequence should be, then stick to it! Pushing the boundaries is very normal at this stage and if he finds he can push them out of the way it will make him more demanding and may even make him insecure. Everything is confusing to toddlers (much like the teenage years) and if the boundaries and consequences are not firm, definate and consistent it will cause confusion and insecurity leading to frustration for both of you. If he gets away with it one day and gets in trouble for it the next he has no idea then what the right thing to do is. It's like walking through a minefield. He may fight tooth and nail to regain control but once you say something, follow through. If you stick like glue to your chosen methods he will start to respond for the better.

    I personally am a big fan of 1,2,3 then time out for toddlers e.g. "toys are not for throwing, that's 1" then "toys are not for throwing, thats two" then "toys are not for throwing, thats three. You can sit down now." If they are doing something serious like hurting someone or putting themselves in danger they only get one warning before time out. e.g. "Stop hitting mummy, ouch, not ok." if he does it again "Stop hitting mummy, not ok, you can sit down". Try to keep your voice level but stern. Save the yelling for situations where he is in immediate danger because he will stop quicker then.

    But basically, make a plan, include all the things that you need him to stop doing, arrive at appropriate consequences that you can follow through on then stick to it. Also make an effort to praise all the positive behaviour you can find. Give him a cuddle and praise but I would stop the bribery wherever possible as he will expect it in future.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the great response. It is hard for us to explain things to him because he is being raised bilingually. Although he has the same amount of vocabulary as his peers, it is spread over two languages so this makes instructions still a bit difficult right now. It adds to all our frustration a bit but we will not compromise on the two languages. I completely understand about the bribes. It has to stop and I can't believe I've become a parent who has resorted to it. Very disappointed in myself.

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    Dont beat yourself up. It is so easy to do hey. And the bilingual thing is awesome! Go for it! Long explanations are not too necessary at this stage. It's more important to jump on the behaviour as soon as he does it so he makes the connection. Also use the same words and tone of voice for every single warning to help strengthen that connection. Even something as simple as "stop throwing, time to sit" will be enough. Have you tried baby sign or makaton to help bridge this gap? Some signs to accompany key words (no matter what language they are said in) may help him to understand better. Toddlers are still waay more visual than aural (hearing) and they will respond better in my experience to visual and audio cues combined than they will to just the audio. Alternatively, maybe picture cards e.g. a big stop sign picture when he has done the wrong thing and a picture of him sitting when telling him his consequence is to sit.
    Last edited by Tildy; 22-06-2012 at 23:14.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to Tildy For This Useful Post:

    chubbasmummy  (23-06-2012)

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    Just a quick note about the supermarket lollipop thing: might be good to give your son
    A verbal heads up before you go that there is a new plan.


 

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