How do you punish an 18 month old?

Krystle - posted on 09/16/2009 ( 75 moms have responded )

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My 18 month old was squirting her drink everywhere. I told her to stop. She did it again. I took it away. She threw herself on the floor screaming and trying to hit and kick me. I did the time out. One minute for every year old. She fought me the whole time. She never did calm down.

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Jami - posted on 09/23/2009

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Physical punishment of any kind light or hard going to teach a baby that hitting isn't ok? It teaches a child that violence solves problems...and they learn to fear the punishment instead of respecting the rules.

Keelie - posted on 09/23/2009

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Oh also, i dont give my son a spkin for throwing i fit, when he throws a fit i take him to his room or a quite place and tell him he can have a fit by himself, he usaully calms down and comes back out to play work pretty darn good, the spakins are for when he does something really bad for the the hundreth time, like when he poor his drink on the floor he does it with every cup i ever give him...so he get a spakin since i have used everyhting else and he still didnt stop.. just thought you should know it not my answer for every punishment, only when its really bad.

Becky - posted on 09/19/2009

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Its all about redirection. Get behind the eyes of your child. Squirting the drink may have been annoying to you, but she has no idea that this is "wrong," and really, its not "bad" behavior. She thought it was cool that when you squeeze the box, stuff flies out. Neat! Get her some squirt toys for the tub and tell her THAT'S the place to squirt liquid.

Ashley - posted on 09/22/2009

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Quoting louise:

I cant believe how many people are advising you to spank your child personaly i think this is a disgrace, and for the woman who gives her kids a good hiding you gotta ask is that not abuse? Hitting your child will only show her its ok to hit but when she turns round and hits you one day it will be a whole different ball game, and she will only fear you now and hate you for it when shes grown up.


spanking is ok,it teaches a child to listen and obey you, it also gets their attiention. you have to know the right way too do it. you dont beat a child. too many people have become so soft on their child that is why we have soooo many and mis-behaving children in u.s. it is un-real.  i see many parents and kids where i work and the parents just let their kids screen and run everywhere and act a wreak.  I was spanked as a child and i dont hate my parents, who and where do you get this info that you have to hate your parents if you were spanked as a child. it is people like you that have made spanking seem like such a horrible thing, yet it was what our fore-fathers did and look at the maners they had back then, now it would be a mircle to get a child to say please and thank you and yes and no sir. ect. you will have a hard time finnding those kids,there arnt as mant parnets out there that really teach there childen the good morles and stick to them

Angela - posted on 09/22/2009

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You are doing the time out right, just be sure you are explaining why she got it and why you don't want her doing it. Maybe you need to give her a different kind of cup, or only allow her to have it when she is sitting at the table.

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Jencie - posted on 12/02/2013

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Just tell them it's wrong it's not ok to that! Spank them only if nessesary ! Otherwise when they get older they are gonna be scared about things they do like my dad did when I was little!

Nicole - posted on 10/22/2013

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I put my 19 month old in time out in his bedroom and close the door until he calms down then a kiss. I thought it was working really well but now he hates his bedroom and refuses to sleep in there even during the day,, anyone else ??

Jenny - posted on 09/30/2009

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i use a type of "time out" technique, i ask DS to stop doing whatever it is (usually slapping!) he is doing wrong, if he doesnt i say you are going outside the door, and i stand him outside the nearest door, usually its outside kitchen door, close the door out slightly or if hes really acting up close it altogether.. leave him to cry for up to a minute and by then he is usually calm again and over the behaviour, i ask him for a sorry hug and tell him he mustnt slap (or whatever) and direct his attention on to a toy or something.. its a very slow process!! I have posted about him slapping in public though, this "punishment" i use at home but i dont know whats best to deal with him in public..

Kayla - posted on 09/29/2009

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I have a 19 month old son, and lately I've been trying something new: When he does something (such as throwing his cup) I take his hands in mine and tell him sternly "that is a no no, no no". If he throws himself on the floor after that I walk out of the room. I know you said you didn't want to leave her alone for a long amount of time, and that's how I feel, so I usually stand where I can still see him, but he doesn't see me watching him. As soon as he calms down I walk in, explain what he did was wrong, hug him, and tell him I love him. It's taking time, but he is getting better. I hope that helps some!

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Some kids are much more headstrong than others.  Just keep at it and be persistant.  As soon as she walks away, put her back. Sooner or maybe later, she will get it.  The first time my daughter stayed, I was in shock.  Now she stays everytime.



 



Quoting Krystle:

I have tried time out..But how do I make her stay there? She hops up as soon as I turn my back...We did this for about 20 minutes before my mom came and picked her up...I havent had to try again yet...





 

[deleted account]

At 18 months the minute for every year old can't really apply since it may take over a minute or ten to calm her down. I put my 19 month old in time out and tell her when she can stop crying, she can come out. When she is done crying and ready to leave time out, I just explain to her why she can't hit or throw things or whatever it is that she was doing. It took a little while, maybe 6 different episodes but now her timeouts are very brief and she stops the fits asap.

Chelsey - posted on 09/25/2009

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My son is 19 months old, just started the whole time out thing. He loves to get into everything everwhere. So...we used a gate that we had surrounding our fireplace, connected it to make a square. Whenever he didn't listen, we said we are going to give you one more chance. If he didn't listen, we put him in the square for one minute. He cried the whole time. When his minute was up, I asked him "are you going to hit, bite, etc again." He has to say he is sorry and then I pick him up out of the square. It's been working.

Keelie - posted on 09/23/2009

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I would say you should try a couple different thing out, every child is different. I spank my son on the bottom, not so hard i leave a mark but hard enough for him to understand he did something wrong. I dont have to do it very often maybe 1 time a week, because i taught him the one two three rule, if i have to get to three then he get a spanking. Beause of the one two three rule i dont actually really ever have to spank him. and if you dont feel comfortable doing that then give a time out after the one two three. what ever you feel comfortable doing. I understand that some people dont belive in spanking there kids, but all kids are different and if it works for you then do what you feel is best.

Lindsey - posted on 09/22/2009

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when she trows a fit you are suppose to ignore it but that doesn't always work for me, plus I don't like it, so after you take it away then distract her with toys or something, but don't let her keep the cup

Desera - posted on 09/22/2009

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Our daughter is now 22 months, but it seems the 18 month phase, i will call it, was so yesterday! Time outs work great, but you HAVE to be consistent!!!! Trust me, my husband and I lack this at times :) It may also depend on whre you are when this happens, like if im in public with my daugher and she is being naughty, i will expedite my shopping to leave sooner, but this isnt a problem for me cuz i do all the shpping for our household, while the hubby stays with the kids! I love it...Im leary of punishment in public as nowadays you can go to jail for what you deem appropriate for punishment while Joe Blow next to you sees it as "abuse"...the lines are crossing and its scary as parents!! Removal from the situation also works wonderfully!!! Out of sight, out of mind comes into play here. and finally, this will get better, :) you just have to ride out this little storm!

Chantelle - posted on 09/22/2009

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I discovered that if your toddler wont sit in timeout for one minute and she is hitting you, put her into the cot and leave her for a few minutes until you are feeling calmer to deal with her. Keep trying the timeout though, but it takes time at her age. Ignore the tantrum, it will get boring for her and tiring when you aren't giving her any attention.

[deleted account]

My son is 20mths old and I have come to realise that children are smarter than we give them credit for. If you are consistant in your punishments whatever they may be eventually your child will know that when they have done something wrong a punishment will follow and this will slow the naughty behaviour down. I figured if my child could close the fridge or cupboard doors when asked or turn on the lights when ask he could also learn the difference between right and wrong. I am also teaching him sign language which helps bridge the communication gaps a bit. He knows the signals for no & stop now and reacts accordingly. Unfortunately there is no quick fix to your problem but by being consistant, clear, calm and with a little time you and your child can go a long way.

Danielle - posted on 09/22/2009

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For my daughter that was the ago I would send her to her room. She didn't have to stay their just the effort that it takes to walk to her room change her attutide. I called it doing a lap, because she would walk their and come back to the living room, Lol!!! It took her out of the problem and clear her head I think.

Lynn - posted on 09/22/2009

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It does take time. I started doing "time out" with my daughter at the same time. Whenever she would get up i would put her back. I never left her there long. Just long enough to know that what she did was wrong. She would cry and scream and i would just turn my head...DONT LEAVE AN 18 MONTH OLD ALONE..... EVER! Then when she got a little quieter i would tell that she was doing good and give her hugs and kisses and let her play. It did take some time but she started learning what was okay and what was not. She is only 21 months now so we are still learning.

Crystyl - posted on 09/22/2009

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My daughter is 20 months and we use the corner as a time out. when she gets in trouble she gets a warning then if she continues she gets put in the corner even if its for a few seconds just until she calms down since kids dont know what time is yet at that age. u may have to keep putting her in the corner if she doesnt want to stay. the first time i did it i ended up blocking her in the corner and turned my back to her. and when she calmed down i let her out. they are very smart and learn fast. now if my daughter continues her bad behavior after the time out then i count to 3 and she gets a spanking and put back in the corner. usually when shes mad she'll go and throw her fit in the corner on her own its pretty funny to watch. but i think i;ve spanked her half a doz times usually she stops her bad behavior after her time out cuz she knows the counting is next and then the spanking and time out again. and ofcourse we always make friends after her scolding which consists of hugs and kisses. just make sure she isnt allowed to kick or hit you cuz she'll only get stronger and it'll be harder to to stop her when shes older.

Shannon - posted on 09/22/2009

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My son is the exact same way, if he doesn't get his own way he throws himself on the floor and bangs his head (several times) . He is only 19 months old. I do the time out thing also - I put him in a chair facing the wall and he gets out & I just keep putting him back til the full 2 min. is up - sometimes it takes about 10/15 min. til he finally stays there, but it's getting better now, I tell him timeout & he goes to the chair and calms down

Lara - posted on 09/22/2009

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it can be really tough trying to survive the toddle years with your sanity in tact - and certainly I am sure you know that this time is all about them aserting their 'personalities' - which is hard on parents, especially as we are used to little babies who 'listened' to us. I would agree with some of the comments above and say consistency is the key - whatever method you choose - try and ensure you stick with it no matter what. Kids respond to rountine and this is true even for discipline situations - so try not to 'give in' (which is hard) and the longer you keep at your chosen method, eventually the penny will drop for them as they realise you will not change your mind. Also, toddlers crave attention (even if its negative) so cutting off the attnetion you give them (and not resorting to shouting ect, as this is still a form of attention) can work on some children - but you will know what works best for your child. I have a real little firecracker of a toddler and we use time-out - it was really difficutl to remain consistent in the begining, as she has a very strong personality, but eventually it did work for us - the screaming and tantrums got less - however, she has realised that in public I 'react' quicker - so I often have to take her to the car and just let her have her tantrum and when she has calmed dowm, we can continue our outing, if not, we go home, Best of luck - I was once told that to get through these years you need a good sense of humour and of course a good glass of wine :)

Cassondra - posted on 09/21/2009

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I feel timeouts work great with my daughter she is also 18months we've been using timeouts since she turned a year and she now understands the concept. She knows if she does something she shouldn't she will be put on time out. we use a chair that sits in a corner in the living room and I set the kitchen oven time its a smiley face and she knows that when it rings she can get up.

Terrianne - posted on 09/21/2009

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18mth is two young to start the time out concept they just dont understand it,

The best course is to stop the behaviour by removing the drink then redirect her onto something else if she has the tantrum just walk away from her she will calm down when she realises no one is watching her so whats the point...

Once the tantrum has stopped reassure her with a hug ad kiss then move on to something else hope that helps. Generally worked with our 5 and i am dealing with it now with 18mth old twins Good Luck

Nicki - posted on 09/21/2009

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The key is to stay consistent! If she does something that gets her in trouble one day and you punish her, and then she does it a couple of days later, make sure and punish her again otherwise her boundaries will never be clear. Next, don't give in! When she's throwing a tantrum, start folding laundry or cleaning up her mess but don't infantalize her or show her in any way that you regret your decision to punish her. Eventually she will understand.

Carlisa - posted on 09/21/2009

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ok you have a sitution, well first off you are the parent and even though every 18 month old kid do not understand that you have to stand firm even though that can be hard because they are so cute and you hate to see the cry.keep your ground no matter what you do not have to be mean but they have to understand you mean business.now i found with my kids i just had to give a look i guest some kids you don't have to say anything when they act out and turely i didn't spank then at such a early age.but my last child was different i had to give her time out and when that didn't work i took her t.v time from her and even had to put her in her room and close the door.but of course none of that work for my last child i did had to spank her and even though that broke my heart because she so young it was a decision i had to make base on the sitution at that moment.i suggest u try everthing i suggest before the spanking and if you can find other things that can help controll the sitution first do it because a spanking you will want that to absolutly the last and i mean the very last thing you do you don't want to frighten your kid and you may not have those beliefs so agin be patient with the sitution and talk to your child let them know thats not the way to act and let them know there will be a punishment for there action.eventhough they may not completely understand but this will be the first step in learning that there are conserquences for there action.

Charlene - posted on 09/21/2009

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My son is 18 months old and i am experiencing exactly the same problem as you! he hits me, kicks and screams when he doesnt get his own way. or lies on the floor kicking! I dont agree with smacking him as i feel thats telling him that hitting is right, if i tell him no he hits me again! I started last week sitting him in the corner of the room when hes bad and telling him off as i put him there. sometimes it works as it seems to make him forget what bad thing he is doing. i really do think its just there age and it will soon pass with persaverance! but good luck and i will let u know if i find any more things that work with my little horror!
charlene

Tina - posted on 09/21/2009

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sometimes u have to literally hold their body up against the corner...if they won't stay themselves.............................i know it sounds cruel.....but it will work

Tina - posted on 09/21/2009

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it is ok to tap that butt!! not hard.but a lil'pop...........and it will break her heart and make her cry alil'..........but say no! as u do it ..or u can do it on her hand! it wont kill her,but teach her

[deleted account]

I'm a very strong believer in giving a hiding as the time out didn't work - AT ALL.
My step kids did the silent tantrums and I learnt that you have be cruel to be kind. They got hidings a few times and now I'll ask , do you want a hiding and they would stop immediately. I feel that if they are old enough to throw a tantrum , they are old enough to get disciplined.
Saying this , I must also say that they must know what a proper hiding is , so that they know what the consequences of their actions will be.
Hope it helps ?
Strongs , Hun !

Cathy - posted on 09/20/2009

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Quoting Chris:

DISTRACTION!!!!!!!!!!!
an 18month old should never be "punished" they are still only a baby, and does not understand right from wrong. distraction works every time at this age, just remove the drink from her then play something else, tickles etc



your absolutey right!!!!!!!!!!!

Cathy - posted on 09/20/2009

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Quoting Chris:

DISTRACTION!!!!!!!!!!!
an 18month old should never be "punished" they are still only a baby, and does not understand right from wrong. distraction works every time at this age, just remove the drink from her then play something else, tickles etc



your absolutey right!!!!!!!!!!!

Nicole - posted on 09/20/2009

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I have the same problem... except my daughter doesnt just try to hit me she succeeds

Emily - posted on 09/20/2009

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to the parents who spank then kiss afterwards to make it seem better, that messes with a kid's head. just be careful how hard and how frequently you do it. my parents went too far with it and when they would come kiss me and tell me they loved me, it felt like they were lying. just be careful

Janet - posted on 09/20/2009

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Rewarding good behavior always works better than any punishment. When my Daughter was around that age I started a simple reward chart (good behavior, good eating, helping clean up toys, and brushing teeth) she caught on very quickly and after a week all I had to ask was: do you want your sticker tonight? That usually solved the issue at hand. Consistency is definitely key. Don't let grandma "rescue" her. And distraction, like others suggested, is also key. Never give in to "drama" totally ignore it. Kids are quick to figure out what gets them attention, ANY kind, good or bad. Say: if you calm down I'll read you a book, or whatever she enjoys doing. It may be inconvenient for you at that exact moment, but it teaches her that "bad" behavior gets you nothing, while calm and cool gets you some mommy-time. The best reward there is!

Lisamarie - posted on 09/20/2009

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You really do need consistancy for time out and a whole lot of patience. That is the technique my husband and I prefer to use. I DO NOT agree with 'spanking' at all! You cannot hit your child for hitting you, that's hypocritical and, IN MY OPINION, makes your child fear you rather than respect you. I also think that it is down to the parent how they punish their children but remember there is a very thin line between spanking and abuse. Good luck in what ever techniques you decide to use. :)

Kirsty - posted on 09/19/2009

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My son started doing that, the naughty corner has worked for us. But you could also try and get down on her level and explain that is naughty. They like doing it because they learnt something new. Maybe you could get her to help you clean up the mess?

If she hits you, put her in the naughty corner. It's really hard to do, but let her scream. Then when she calms down enough to listen, explain to her that mummy is her friend and you dont hit your friends. There is a really good book called Raising Girls, as I have a son Raising Boys has helped me a lot in understanding how a boy thinks and what emotional level he is at.
I hope this is helpful!

Elizabeth - posted on 09/19/2009

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Reacting to the temper tantrums only feed it and cause them to continue and progress. The best way to handle a grumpy toddler is to redirect their attention and focus to something else. You can't "punish" a baby but simply teach them that acting like that is not going to get them anywhere.

Frances - posted on 09/19/2009

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JUST BE PERSISTANT WITH HER. MY LIL GIRL HATES TIME OUT AND THROWS A BIG FUSS WHEN SHE HAS TO GO, BUT WHEN SHE TRIES TO GET OUT U KEEP PUTTING HER BACK. DO NOT GIVE UP. SHE WILL GET IT SOON!! GOOD LUCK

Patty - posted on 09/19/2009

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I would put my son in his room and put the baby gate up. making sure his room is baby proof of course. I left him in there 5 to 10 min. checking on him now and then. as he gets older a little longer at a time. (also depends on what kind of trouble they do) at first they scream, but they will come to realize what is happening. usually he started to play after a few min. thats ok as long as he was in his room.

Donna - posted on 09/19/2009

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redirect your child,Pick her up and take her to do something else,without the drink,.Take a walk outside etc.Next time (assuming it was a straw or sippy cup) use a different cup.redirecting her to something else interesting will keep her calm,but she will eventually know u took it from her because thats not what u do with a drink.Stay calm and be consistent.

Charity - posted on 09/18/2009

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Quoting Magan:

also we have a special chair for time out. try to find a simple chair and place it in a special place. you can also use time outs for calming times. Children at this age are also dealing with a lot of frustration, because they don't understand thier feelings and they can't communicate as much as they need to. Allow them to calm themselves in a time out like situatation.



I totally agree with all three of your quotes. My son would go through periods every so often where he would be really irritable and prone to more tantrums. I figured he was over stimulated and just needed some peace and quiet and some time to himself. I would put him down in his crib the same as a nap except I would give him a couple stuffed animals and give him about 30 minutes of quiet time by himself. This was not punishment, just a break from all activity. Sometimes he would fall asleep but most of the time he would just play quietly by himself. This helped him considerably. He would be so happy for the rest of the day.  

Charity - posted on 09/18/2009

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Ignoring the behavior does not work. I tried that for a little while and my son's behavior only got worse especially in public. My son also would spit out his water. The first time I would tell him "No, don't spit", the second time I would say no and then take the cup away. He would scream, throw himself on the floor and hit me. I gave him two spankings on the bottom and put him in time out. He stayed where I put him. If your daughter gets up, give her another spanking and put her back. Also try this link they have alot of great advice about teaching toddlers. http://www.nogreaterjoy.org/

Nicole - posted on 09/18/2009

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Be stern!!! I do that with my daughter and it works but you have to be consistent and serious. No joking!!

Megan - posted on 09/18/2009

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she will calm down put her in her room till she learns dont do a minute per age do it till she decides she ready to be right tough love mom if you let them walk on you they will and they older they get the better they learn how you have to put the pants on and keep them there hunn let her know that dont let her dictate you

Megan - posted on 09/18/2009

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its called time out sweet heart it will hurt you more then them but you will be fine they wont want to stay just put them back till they get they hang of it you do it enough times and they will my son since he was one he gets time out on his bed now that hes 3 1/2 he gets grounded to his room till he knows how to act and he wont leave his room either till he stops acting and doing what hes not sapose to little ones are they easiest to teach as long as you put forth the effort and have pateints

Susan - posted on 09/18/2009

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TIme outs work, and work well. But you have to stick to it no matter what. The very first time be prepared for a hour or so. But I promise it will get much easier.



The first time it took my son 1 hour of time out to get him to sit there for 1 minute because he kept getting up. But it only took about 10 minutes the second time, and gets easier each time until they do it no problem. Now I only have to say "do you want to go to time out?" and he does what he is told...mostly. Now time outs are only for those really bad moments where he will continue not to listen or do what he is told. I generally give him the 3 strikes and your in time out method myself.



Good luck....

Casey - posted on 09/18/2009

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Although some people would disagree, spanking does have it's benefits, but with my son I reserve it for more serious things such as biting or hitting another child(I've only had to spank him 2 times in 2.5 years). I have used time-out in situations where he has done something wrong. I guess I didn't really explain the 'ignoring the tantrum" part the way I meant to. I don't ignore tantrums that my son throws when he is doing so because he has been told he can not continue with a certain behavior. However, I do suggest ignoring the tantrum when they are throwing it because they are not getting their way with something. An example I can use is when my son ask for a piece of candy just before dinner or ask for a toy in the store. I try to explain to him why he is not allowed to have it(rather than just say no because I believe it is important to let children know and understand why they can not do something or why they need to do something) but he still sometimes throws a fit anyway(usually when he is tired). At that point, I tell him that I am not going to talk to him about it while he is fussing and I walk away. I tell him when he is ready to talk to me like a big boy, he can come get me. Once he realizes he does not have an audience, he stops fussing. Of course, these suggestions may not work well for you right now, or at least your child may not understand them right now, but I have been using them since my son was about 15 months old. That's the age when he started talking and really seeming to understand what I was saying to him. It has worked very well for us. He rarely has an fits or tantrums except when he is really tired.

Each parent has their own way of dealing with these types of issues with their child, and can recommend different ways for dealing with a child. Ultimately though, you need to find what works with your child. Children respond to punishment/scolding in different ways. What works for one child may not work for another. With my son, usually all I have to do is tell him in a stern voice that he is not allowed to do something and that is the end of it. It really seems to upset him when he realizes he has done something wrong and so spanking or even time-out is not usually necessary with him. Try different methods to see what really works with your son.

Magan - posted on 09/18/2009

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also we have a special chair for time out. try to find a simple chair and place it in a special place. you can also use time outs for calming times. Children at this age are also dealing with a lot of frustration, because they don't understand thier feelings and they can't communicate as much as they need to. Allow them to calm themselves in a time out like situatation.

Magan - posted on 09/18/2009

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I don' t think it is smart to ignore the tantrum, don't give in either. If you ignore the tantrum you are teaching her that the behavior is acceptable. The tantrum has to be addressed whether by time out or other methods.

Magan - posted on 09/18/2009

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A lot of it is determined by what you have done up until now. Chad has just begun the throw a fit stage but he knows he doesn't get out of the time out chair unless he is no longer crying or throwing a fit.

I also believe in spanking I know most people don't but I believe that if you spank now when you don't have to spank them hard it will make it easier when they are older. Now that Chad knows the word spanking all we have to do is say the word and he straightens up and acts right most of the time.

Casey - posted on 09/18/2009

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It sounds like you did the right thing by taking taking the drink away when she refused to listen to you. At that age, they are not likely to get much from timeout. The only thing I would recommend is that when she threw herself on the ground and started screaming, just walk away(stay close enough to make sure she doesn't hurt herself obviously) and ingore the tantrum. It's often hard for kids to control their emotions at that age and sometimes the best thing to do is just ignore the behavior. Often, they are looking for attention and so depriving them of that takes the wind out of their sails. That's what I would do with my son and he rarely throws fits anymore.

Toni - posted on 09/18/2009

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I have an 18 month old an he is the same he is told no or not to do it twice an if he does it again after that we brought a travel cot an we put him in there an leave the room an stand out of sight (not closing the door) this way i know he cant wonder round an play an i know he cant hurt him self an after 5 mins he calms down an i will go to him an tell him what he did was wrong and not to do it again he doesn't go in there much now i have been doing this since he was 15 months old an now he gets the point that he will only be told twice then he will disciplined as such. As i said it works very well for me he hasn't been in there for just over 3 weeks now.

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