Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Having a Moment: What's your Disciplining Style?

            I know I'm not alone in this but as a parent, on occasion I reach a point where my boys can really get on my nerves. I've been testing out various discipline methods and although this week has been a bit calmer, they have both been really testing limits and acting, well quite crazy.  You'd think that with a background in Education {currently finishing my masters in Elementary Education and was a Preschool teacher for 5 years} and a Bachelors degree in Forensic Psychology {mostly studying behavior} I could figure out a way to take charge with my boys. I know there is no right answer for this and it's always a debatable topic between the hubby and I and many households i'm sure but What is the best way to discipline your child?
            Lately my first born, my sweetheart, CJ has been a little mouthy {constantly talking back} and grouchy. I'm not sure what has gotten into him! With Tristan already turning 1
I think it's too late to say that CJ is acting out because of the new baby. The problem is he's too dang smart for his own good and combined with his mother's attitude he's been getting into trouble quite a bit. I've tried timeouts, he throws himself in the corner for his 7 minutes and pops back up when it's over un-phased by the few moments of silence. We've tried showing him the consequences of his behavior. We try to make sure the punishment fits the crime so that he understands why it's happening. He's currently going 2 months without Wii video game privileges, for slacking with homework because he's become too preoccupied with how Super Mario will make it to the next level without pinching his tush on those spiky things. I'm shocked he's lasted this long, although we have made some concessions by bending the rules a little for the older kids to play at the baby's 1st birthday party, and the weekend we found out he made the Honor Roll {proud mommy grin}.
               If you ask the Hubby he'll tell you a good pow-pow is in order every now and then to set a child straight and keep that level of fear and respect. I was never really spanked as a kid, but my dad and I definitely got into screaming matches as I reached my late teens. I guess those arguments were because they always allowed me to voice my opinions or as the Hubby would say "You guys back-talked your parents" and as my opinion differed we clashed more. We were watching the season premiere last night of Tori and Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood on Oxygen, we get a kick out of watching them because they are so relatable. Dean, like my own Hubby seems to be the grounding force of the house when us ladies tend to let our emotions take over or when we dream big seemingly unrealistic dreams or when we fail to put our foot down with the kids.Tori discusses her 17 Tori-isms about life with kids in a sit down with Parenting magazine and discusses here, how she has become less of a softy with her kids.
Tori Spelling during a photo shoot with Liam and Stella source
           In one particular scene Tori was in the midst of a photo shoot with the kids while Dean was out of town. Her oldest child Liam {such a charming kid} was a hot mess, smacking her in the face, trying to pull her lash extensions out  and all the while she was concerned with how the crew and friends around her would judge her as a parent. Why couldn't she reign in her child's behavior? Liam was given a timeout but Tori did admit that she wasn't the disciplinary and that when Dean's away Liam knows how to push her buttons. I don't favor spankings{ I've given CJ a spanking maybe three times his whole little life and it broke my heart} but I know that my screaming and yelling is no better, for me or the kids. It got to a point where Chris would yell at his friends and say things like "Are you hearing me? you better start listening" while talking through his teeth in frustration and I knew he was mimicking us.
CJ at Toys R' US Times Square

             One of CJ's biggest issues is his need to always get, get, get!! and it's my fault i guess because the Hubby says I spoil him. He'd never admit to doing it himself although recently CJ suckered him with his big cheeseball smile into getting this Beyblade set he wasn't supposed to get till Christmas. CJ was never really jealous of the baby until the birthday party, he constantly broke into tears as Tristan was showered with gifts and we opened cards for the baby that were filled with $20 bills. CJ made sure to count it all to compare what was in his Lightning McQueen wallet. There was no way it would be acceptable that his younger brother could buy twice as many packs of Pokemon cards then he could. It was good thinking on his Nana's part, she came prepared with a special gift just for the big brother. The hubby and I have been considering volunteering on the weekends and setting limits on what he gets; no more begging for that new toy that sings while doing flips and tricks while glowing in the dark, when he knows we are just going to Target for toiletries and granola bars!
         I promised CJ I would scale down my yelling, he knows that stress isn't good for mommy's Crohns disease. I know that whatever this moment is, it's just a phase that I'm hoping will pass soon. I guess he's making up for never putting us through the terrible 2's, which I'm already anticipating with Tristan who has a big temper for such a tiny person. It boggles my mind that at 10 months old he already went through a moment of aggressive mannerisms. I know kids model what they see and aren't fully capable of communicating their needs but we aren't walking around biting people and certainly not head butting anyone when we are in a crappy mood. Once he did that to me in a Target while I was trying to console his over tired self. The Hubby laughed so hard but honestly I almost dropped him due to pure instinct. Tristan is definitely testing limits, his favorite activity of the day is turning the TV on and off and laughs hysterically while doing it. I usually just remove him from whatever area he's causing chaos in and firmly tell him "No thank you" with an explanation , even though I know he doesn't understand fully but I know it's better than wagging my finger and shouting empty "No's". What's your disciplining style? Do you dole out the timeouts, give pow-pows, or try to talk it out and revoke privileges? Do you discipline or plan to discipline your kids the same way your parents did? 

xoxo, Dellah


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