Time In As An Alternative To Time Out

We’ve all heard of time outs, right? The naughty step? It’s the super nannies’ (who often have no children of their own and so can’t comprehend the emotional aspect that comes with disciplining a child) control tool of choice.

But it’s not one I myself like. Seeing, or worse, putting my child in distress tightens my chest. It raises my blood pressure, and it ruins my mood. And sure, it may work, but what works isn’t necessarily always the best thing to do. If you have a leg infection, amputating the leg will get rid of the infection, but was it the right action to take?Read more: Time In As An Alternative To Time Out

Choice And Consequence In Conscious Mindfulness

If there was a soundtrack to my life, the last week or so would have a ghostly echo pounding through a driving bass line. The ghostly echo would say one word, over and over again: “Mindful, mindful, mindful”.

My mother will tell you I’ve always believed that we have the ability in ourselves to change our thoughts, and from there, to change our actions. When I was a child she went through a phase of calling herself stupid a lot. I believe in the power of words, so whenever she called herself stupid, or said she’d done something stupid, I’d hit her really hard with my fist on her shoulder.  It became Pavlovian. She’d say stupid, I’d hit her. She soon stopped calling herself stupid, at least in my presence.Read more: Choice And Consequence In Conscious Mindfulness

How To (Not) Curse A Two Year Old

My little girl is two years old. In most circles, that fact is normally followed by ghostly ‘oooh’ sounds.

That bothers me.

It bothers me that there’s an assumed reaction to becoming two years old. It bothers me that an avalanche of bad behaviour is prophetically cast over wary mothers and unsuspecting toddlers. It bothers me that it seems an inexplicable and inescapable fact: The next year of your life is going to suck. Good luck!

Let me tie a couple of thoughts together for you, and see whether you can see where I’m coming from by the end of it:
Read more: How To (Not) Curse A Two Year Old

Playgroup Monster Mama

Yes. That’s me. Or it was, today.

I’m a firm believer in Ameli’s playtime. I’m a firm believer that she needs to be around other children. I’m a firm believer that she needs to learn to share. I’m a firm believer that she can’t have the best toys to herself at all times. I’m a firm freakin’ believer that she should stand her ground when whiny snot-nosed crying little boys try and take her toys off her.

Or, apparently, so I found out today.
Read more: Playgroup Monster Mama

Peace For Parents – Friday Favourites

My favourite piece of writing* in pretty much all of literary history is the poem ‘If’ by Rudyard Kipling. There’s something about his admonitions to his son that speaks to my very heart, and the phrases:

“IF you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;”

seem so apt for parenting. But sometimes remaining calm seems practically impossible.
Read more: Peace For Parents – Friday Favourites

Blackmail, Violence And Emotional Abuse As Parenting Tools

Blackmail is a crime. I think we’d all agree with that.

Emotional blackmail is abuse. Again – we all agree.

So why on earth would anyone offer emotionally blackmailing a child as a suitable option/alternative to smacking?

A mother asked on a parenting group the other day what she could do about her very destructive 21 month old. In response she had answers like this:
Read more: Blackmail, Violence And Emotional Abuse As Parenting Tools

Christianity And Attachment Parenting: Do The Worlds Collide?

Do Christianity and Attachment Parenting go hand in hand? I’m sure we’ve all heard that Jesus was breastfed, and I’m sure we’ve all heard the Christmas story enough to know that Jesus co-slept, at least until the wise men came. But my question is this: What would Jesus think of Gentle Discipline?
Read more: Christianity And Attachment Parenting: Do The Worlds Collide?

Mama Said No. All The Time.

One day I sat in an adjoining room to where my husband and daughter were. I didn’t know particularly what they were up to, but at one point, a full few minutes of the ‘conversation’ was her Daddy saying ‘No, no, don’t touch that. No Ameli, put that down. No, no, I said no’ and so on.

I became conscious of how often we were saying no to Ameli and discussed it with my husband. At first he didn’t really think it such a big deal, but he must have become conscious of it, as he started pointing it out to me when I was doing it too.

We began to realise how difficult it really is to exclude ‘no’ from your vocabulary once Ameli started walking, unpacking things from cupboards, and generally expressing her independence.

It wasn’t until Ameli one day did something she was allowed to, then looked at me and shook her head that I realised that it did have an effect on her.

So we’ve started making a few changes to the way we ‘do’ things:

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