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What Method of Discipline Do You Believe In?

When it comes to raising kids, parenting styles are all over the map. This is especially true when it's time to set limits.

Some moms and dads are laid back and others are strict.

How did you build boundaries for your children?


Join The Conversation
catesugar catesugar 9 years
It entirely depends on the situation and the child. I was recently stood up by the mother of a boy in my daughter's class (year 1). The children were at a birthday party and he, in full view of me, tried to push her into a very spiky (recently pruned) hedge. The boy is a full year older (and considerably larger) than my daughter. I yelled "STOP! BACK AWAY – I SAW THAT – GO – NO EXCUSES – BACK OFF" from a distance of around 10metres. I did not approach him and my daughter ran to me. A fortnight later, the mother (who had not been in attendance at the party) informed me that I was damaging her son unjustly and that because she never raised her voice to him, that I should not either. I told her that if the tables were turned, she would have yelled. She said that she never would – she would "run to his side". Given that she is short, fat and old, I expressed doubt to her that her approach would have at all been efficacious in preventing facial and eye injury. The point that I am trying to make (albeit by a wordy example) is that how we discipline our children can have an effect on other children who come into contact with them as well. Because the boy was only ever "reasoned with" and "asked to behave" he had no concern about his actions towards my daughter. Sheer surprise at being yelled at by me stopped him. You can't always reason with children - they are not creatures of reason (and nor are most adults, for that matter). A corollary - if my daughter had attempted to push another child into a spiky hedge, she would have received a contemporaneous single smack on the backside combined with a lengthy lecture delivered in very soft, yet clipped tones. I find that the lecture hurts more than the single smack.
So-Fab So-Fab 9 years
I think it should be a combination depending on the child's temperament. I don't ever think parents should yell, it accomplishes nothing. All my parents had to do was look at me and I straightened up, my sister required a little more work spankings and punishment. My parent's talked about things with me and if needed I lost out on privileges and that made me want to straighten up.
lianabambi lianabambi 9 years
seems like children are worse behaved these days compared to how they were back in the day.. i think parents are being too easy on their kids now.. i got spanked but i knew i did wrong and knew my mom didn't like doing it.. when i got older i got hit on my palms with a stick.. korean moms for ya.. hahaha but she's the best i'm so much closer to her than any other mother-daughter relationship i know..
duck-duck-goose duck-duck-goose 9 years
Combination of the above options, plus some alternative strategies. Every child is different. What works well for one may prove ineffective for another.
ineasley ineasley 9 years
I believe that you have to use different modes of discipline for different offenses. Luckily I haven't had to spank my daughter but I have used time out and taken away certain toys. I have to admit I have yelled when I have walked in on her doing scertain things. But usually those things were actions that would have involved her harming herself. But it does depend on the child to determine what method to use. What may work for one child, may not work for another.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 9 years
I dont have children, but nieces x 2 and they got time outs when they were younger, now they are 10 and 14 and they get privileges revoked and they have a point system also. I was raised, with my 4 sisters in a non spanking home and I am eternally grateful for a patient understand yet stern mother.
mf mf 9 years
oh and i avoid rage and violence, but discipline is VITAL!
mf mf 9 years
the kind that will make them tolerable citizens for the rest of the world. boundaries and consequences. otherwise, they will become self-centered and spoiled and not good members of the kind of society i hope to see for them. the methods are different at each age and stage. what works for toddlers doesn't work for 7 year olds. but i never threaten and i never give in. otherwise that just confuses the child and makes them think that manipulation will get them far. a skill far too many children i see have becom adept at.
Twinkle1 Twinkle1 9 years
Revoking privileges works with my 8 year old daughter but she's always been an easy child. It's more difficult with my 3 year old son who is bossy and stubborn as hell. I try to ignore the bad behaviour and praise the good behavior. So far it's not working.
maze1 maze1 9 years
I have one child so I use a mixture of different things. I think the most ineffective one is the naughty spot for me. Children are smarter than you think, they love to test you! I was raised in a house where we were smacked, so I don't really approve of that unless there is a VERY good excuse. As long as you make the rules clear and ensure that they understand, they will be aware of the consequences. I also reward my son spontaneously if he does something without me asking, or if he is being good. It is MUCH more important to reward them for being good!
bluebird bluebird 9 years
my mom did the 1-2-3-timeout thing from when i was five until i turned fifteen, and it did not work very well! first off, i liked being in my room. it was nice and quiet and i inevitably got to read a book. second off, the only thing it taught me was to do the behavior mom disapproved of when she wasn't around. if she had possibly talked to me about my actions, or revoked privileges that affected me(when you don't use the phone or tv, being grounded from them for any amount of time isn't a punishment, i believe we would have had a much more understanding relationship.
Neural Neural 9 years
I use time outs and natural consequences. It may change as she gets older but it pretty much works right now. Just like JennyJen says, I just say, "Do you want a time out?" and she says "no" and stops. Usually.
JennyJen2 JennyJen2 9 years
I voted timeout. We say - Don't do this or don't do that because you will hurt yourself or what ever , and most times a 1 1/2 year old completely disregards this because they don't have fear. But the minute I say - "do you want a time out?" she stops and does as she is told. I think she has actually only ever been in "time out" three times for like a minute each time. One minute for each year of age is what we use.
erinflower erinflower 9 years
We do a few of those items. Sometimes natural consequences seem to be enough. But when my middle child is annoying the crap out of his older brother he needs a time out. As others have said it all depends upon the situation and the child.
backfat backfat 9 years
I don't think this poll works considering I wouldn't use the same punishment for just any offense. It really depends on severity, whether it happened before, if it was something that could have gotten them or another person killed...There are a million and one things to take into account, therefore this poll is not going to work.
jedimasterarmi jedimasterarmi 9 years
i believe it depends on the severity of the wrong doing.
ktdid214 ktdid214 9 years
well, we don't have children yet, but i believe that the punishment should fit the crime. if one kid hits the other, the one that got hit gets a free punch. KIDDING! but seriously, we wouldn't ground a kid for a month if they did something minor, and we wouldn't let them off the hook if they did something major.
abqmama abqmama 9 years
And I admit that I yell an awful lot. I grew up in a yelling family so raising my voice comes naturally to me. I try not to and I am getting better at recognizing when I am doing it but some things learned in childhood are so deeply ingrained that it is difficult to stop. That is exactly why I don't want my children to grow up around it, I don't want them to think it is acceptable to scream at people and not even realize when they are doing it.
abqmama abqmama 9 years
It depends on the situation. My son is 6 and is just starting to disobey and backtalk so we are feeling it out as we go. Usually he gets time out in his room. Since he is only six most of his bad behavior stems from being overly tired and overly stimulated in school so time outs can actually work. I think discipline has to be tailored to the child. What works now may not work in a year or two so we will see as we go along.
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
we've never really had to do much corrective behavior. my oldest is SO severely impaired that one look from me told the other 2 that whatever was going on neded to change. when someone starts having a psychotic episode in target you don't get to have a turn at naughty. anyway, just recently my 7 and 9 year old wouldn't go to bed for the first time! also had some back talk/sassy mouth from each of them. i've used the "1-2--3" threatening voice and then the "if you do that again you will not go to the skating rink/your friends house or will go to bed 1/2 an hour early". also try to keep them on a bed time schedule so no one is over tired, that makes everything worse.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
We incorporate a few of these into one. For instance, I think it's pointless to revoke priviledges without discussing the issue, especially when they're younger. They won't know why they lost the priviledge.
Masqueraded_Angel Masqueraded_Angel 9 years
Sigh..I'm currently struggling with this issue. See, when my 5 year old goes to Grandma's house for the day, things are obviously a bit different there than they are at home. When Daddy is home, things aren't "followed through" as much as I would like them to be. Meaning Dad's a pushover. :) Which leaves me, Mommy...the big ol' meanie-pants...and at this point he's getting rather defiant and sassy when I discipline him, so...yeah. Turns out taking his toys away and setting him on time out just aren't cutting it anymore.
faerymagick15 faerymagick15 9 years
I think different things work for different kids. My kids responded only to taking priviledges or toys away...when my daughter was in trouble...I took her TV, computer time, iPod, and stereo away for 2 weeks. If it continued...I extended it a month. You'd be surprised how quickly it worked for us! My son, even though he is special needs, we would take his playstation away and he would be back on track pretty much within a day. His needs were different and we could only do things like that with him on a short time period basis because he just doesn't comprehend the same way a normal child would. But each kid is different. I honestly think yelling does no good for anyone involved. I admit I have spanked when they were between 5 and 6 if they did something dangerous. I am not proud of it, but we all make mistakes. Time outs NEVER worked with either of mine nor any of my friends kids.
redsugar redsugar 9 years
We usually tell him to stop the undesirable behavior and that usually works. (Lucky us!) If telling him to stop doesn't work and he's doing something like, running away from us to go back to the park, we pull the privilege of going to the park for x amount of time. Sometimes he gets so upset we do a time out so he can calm down. We always discuss the issue afterwards.
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