What is reasonable discipline?

(70 Posts)
Softywife Fri 11-Jan-13 09:09:00

DH wants an objective opinion.

"Do you think it's reasonable to tell a 4 year old to stay in her bedroom with the door closed until she apologises or a time limit is up as a punishment for seriously misbehaving. Bathroom breaks allowed and baby monitor on. The time DH has in mind is 2 hours."

PS Originally he said 3 hours and the misbehaviour was throwing a tantrum because she was upset about going to nursery.

MrsBungleBear Fri 11-Jan-13 10:49:21

I would do time out of 4 minutes for a tantrum. I don't think tantrums are acceptable behaviour and so would time out and get an apology.

2 hours is far too long.

Softywife Fri 11-Jan-13 10:50:12

Just to be sure I get a balanced view, does anyone reading this think it's a reasonable approach but has been keeping quiet?

Casmama Fri 11-Jan-13 10:50:51

I think the naughty step works well for some kids but with my ds the going back after 3 mins sometimes winds him up more and it then takes many return visits before he will apologise and then we both feel like crap about it.
Sometimes if he is really wound up I will say come out when you are ready to apologise and it rarely takes more than 10 mins but allows him to retain a bit of control and dignity.
I can't imagine that it would have taken 2 hrs for your dd to apologise so I think the time period is irrelevant.

However, I think you both should have been more understanding about how she felt- she is only four and had missed her mum. Yes her behaviour was unacceptable but in your shoes I would look at what I could have done differently.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 11-Jan-13 10:56:03

I'd have kept her home before she kicked off. It's nursery

Your DH is going to have to get a good grip on life, she's 4, the fact that he even considered putting her in her room for 3 hours over a tantrum is worrying.

A regular tantrum requires 'stern words' or the loss of a 'priviledge' or toy for a bit if anything. Getting upset because Mummy has been away and DD2 and Mummy are going to be at home and you want stay with them is perfectly understandable and only someone lacking in empathy would be punishing her for it sad

Softywife Fri 11-Jan-13 10:56:58

I think the time period is irrelevant

So, on the assumption that she would apologise quickly, do you think it would be okay to bring her back from nursery and put her in her room with the door closed?

Casmama Fri 11-Jan-13 10:57:34

I feel a bit sad for your Dd actually. I have to go away with work for days sometimes and know my DS really misses me. There is often a bit of bad behaviour when I get back but I make some allowances because he didn't choose a job that takes his mummy away but has to deal with the fact I'm not here.

I think in your shoes I would have been tempted to keep her off but appreciate that I don't know much about your situation.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 11-Jan-13 10:58:57

It's beyond my ability to be quiet grin.

I'm pretty tough. I was brought up in the 70's and have the 'it didn't do me any harm' approach to it all. I think most parents now are FAR too soft and that many children could do with much firmer boundaries, much more 'being told' and a lot less 'being pandered too' etc and I am saying this is ridiculous.

Casmama Fri 11-Jan-13 10:59:25

Sorry I hadn't seen your reply before my last post.

No ABSOLUTELY not. At that age punishments need to be immediate. To further deprive her of her mother after being at nursery is pretty cruel actually and I would not allow that to happen in my house.

Softywife Fri 11-Jan-13 11:01:32

after being at nursery

DH wanted it to be instead of nursery.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 11-Jan-13 11:01:58

The time period is not irrelevant, not at all. For actual misbehavior (deliberately hurting someone, esp her baby sister for example) a few minutes in her room until she's ready to apologise is fine. 2-3 hours is never fine. Never.

No - the poor little mite has been punished enough already, she has been made to go to nursery when you have been away and are now at home with the baby - excluding her sad < that's what she sees and frankly, as it's only nursery and not her GCSE's I tend to agree with her. How can either of you think of punishing her further?

KittyBreadfan Fri 11-Jan-13 11:03:48

I think considering locking a child in their room for two hours is disgusting.

Softywife Fri 11-Jan-13 11:04:03

a few minutes in her room until she's ready to apologise is fine.

What if she won't apologise?

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 11-Jan-13 11:04:23

Why the fuck would he want to make her go into her room for the duration of nursery? Is he normally this cruel? How does he treat you? Is he normally completely insensitive to her needs?

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 11-Jan-13 11:05:25

Why should she apologise for wanting to stay at home with you? You have been away, she missed you, she's 4. WHY does this need any punishment?

puddock Germany Fri 11-Jan-13 11:05:48

Honestly? I have a 4 year old, and I'd be horrified if anyone suggested that as an approach. It is way out of proportion.
Even if you do use time out as a technique, your DH should be thinking in terms of minutes, not hours - and not shutting the child away during it.
Tantrumming is a sign of being emotionally overwhelmed, IMO it's less frustrating all round for a parent to try to identify the need that your child is expressing and meet it if possible, or at least to talk and acknowledge her feelings.

eshie Fri 11-Jan-13 11:06:08

Agree with other posters 2 hours is way too long, does not fit the 'crime', which as far as i can see is wanting to spend time with Mum!!!

Narked Fri 11-Jan-13 11:08:53

She's 4!!!!

Totally OTT.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 11-Jan-13 11:09:29

If it had been a situation where she needed to go (say you had hospital appointments or work or whatever) then she should have been cuddled, & reassured that you would be there <that you wouldn't be away for another prolonged period> and that when she was picked up you'd do something nice/special etc and that it was the weekend and so you'd be able to do xyz etc. Not wound up into a tantrum then had her father wanting to further punish her. Poor wee dot.

Casmama Fri 11-Jan-13 11:09:40

When I said the time period is irrelevant it is on the assumption (based on my child) that the apology would be quick and it would never be anywhere near that length of time.
I don't know this little girl though and agree 2-3 hours is completely inappropriate.

Instead of nursery, well that's just stupid. She doesn't want to go so she throws a tantrum- result is she doesn't have to go and can then apologise after 5 mins and she gets to come out and play or refuses to apologise and is punished for 2-3 hours.

You would have been as well not trying to send her in the first place and avoiding the drama.

Lifeisontheup Fri 11-Jan-13 11:12:11

At that age I would have probably said you can stay with me but it will be boring and you'll have much more fun at nursery, when you get back we can do xyz (treat type things). If you don't go we won't be able to do xyz. Then if she choose to stay then make the morning boring ie no tv just normal household things with not too much attention for her.
I certainly wouldn't be insisting on shutting her in her room, isn't it supposed to be a minute for each year of their age if you use a naughty spot?

Casmama Fri 11-Jan-13 11:12:32

Now I would tell her off for the tantrum and spend some quality time together.
If you, dh and dd2 are all in the house then no wonder she didn't want to be excluded by being sent to nursery.

Badvoc Fri 11-Jan-13 11:16:25

She is 4 fgs and missed her mum.
Your poor dd sad

Hullygully Fri 11-Jan-13 11:16:31

I am so angry on your dd's behalf and I feel so sorry for her that all I can say is that I would like to mince your dh into tiny pieces as his "reasonable discipline" for even THINKING such a thing.

Softywife Fri 11-Jan-13 11:19:03

If you, dh and dd2 are all in the house

DH was at work.

Casmama Fri 11-Jan-13 11:20:06

So you were meant to enforce this punishment?

No way I would do this.

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