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advise/thoughts/tips needed on 'disciplining' a 16mo..

(35 Posts)
HappyJoyful Wed 18-Apr-12 13:22:26

16mo dd is a live wire.. she's feisty, strong willed and know's what she wants! She's very mobile, into climbing, rolling, bashing things and throwing things (including herself!) on the floor, on the table on everything..

Don't get me wrong (most of the time) I adore all these characteristics in her but I have a strong feeling we're going to have to fight some 'battle's' soon as trying to get her to do things she doesn't want / or shouldn't be doing is already turning into a bit of struggle.

I want to nip this in the bud - without being constantly shouting no, grabbing her or things off her etc, etc.

I'm clearly aware of 'picking the battle's' discussions but there are certain things I know I want to install in her - eg: holding hands when crossing road - given she's only just out and about walking, I'm a big fan of allowing her to do this but as I say, wish her to have a good sense of this installed into her - my recent attempts to hold her hands get greeted with a very firm and grumpy 'NO, mine' and hands thrown across her chest, resulting in me having to just grab her and then if road quiet she has walked but thrown herself in tears into middle of road, with me hanging on - not good as you can imagine!!

She's great at grabbing things I know she shouldn't have and certain items I do just grab back - eg: glasses, scissors, knives - mainly things of danger - other things I'm not fussed about, as I say, I don't want to constantly be saying no or doing this.

Anyway, as always I waffle - but I did read about someone before and 'cooling off spot' or something similar they were already using on a 12mo - I wondered about that? And as I say, in title just wondering what I can start doing...

VillaEphrussi Sun 20-May-12 19:24:44

I absolutely second Unconditional Parenting. It's brilliant and a great antidote to the behavioural conditioning methods which are so prevalent. It advocates being a loving and reasonable parent and not an automatron.

I use the Littlelife sack too, and wouldn't be without it for city walking toddlers.

AdventuresWithVoles Sun 20-May-12 19:41:48


Kt1991 Sun 20-May-12 20:31:47

My son will be 16months next month, just recently he has become really naughty. He has started hitting, pulling hair and pinching people. Thankfully I have only seen him do it to family members or close friends, but it is quite embarassing and I feel ashamed he is acting like this at such a young age! I find it a struggle too if I am with him on my own and he starts to hurt me, because he is very strong, and will just laugh while he's doing it. My partner and I thought we would try the naughty corner now, some may think this is too soon as he is quite young still, but we thought the sooner we bring it in, he should hopefully start to understand, he is very advanced and clever for his age! So far 2-3 attempts he has stayed in the corner until we have told him he can come and "say sorry" by giving us a kiss, and it has worked both times. I am hoping he is not going to get worse the older he gets. Been browsing through the comments, and I think we are going to invest in some reins too, as he's been walking for about a month now, but also he can also start to throw a strop if he cant have his own way, and try and run away from us. Is/was everyone elses 15/16month old as naughty as this at that age?

Sparklyboots Sun 20-May-12 21:33:21

My 16mo has done all the things you describe, but I wouldn't call him 'naughty'.

mixedberrymilkshake Sat 26-May-12 07:23:24

sparklyboots ....erm, hitting, pulling hair and pinching isn't naughty?

Psychopsilocybin Sat 26-May-12 07:50:40

Kt1991 - my DS is 14m old and pinches, hits and bites. Mainly me though, he does occasionally with DP. When he does it I say 'Ahhh' and gently stroke the area (normally my chest) he is hitting or pinching. It works, it stops him but he isn't aware what he is doing hurts me IYKWIM? It's a phase that will pass, just have patience.

And no mixedberry, I don't think it is naughty behaviour. I've worked with children this age for many years and many have gone through this phase. It passes and it doesn't mean a child is naughty. I don't like that word anyway, it's such a negative label. (That's just my opinion though)

HappyJoyful - perseverance is your friend! Stick to tactic and it will soon sink in. And I would definitely recommend reigns!

Adventure, what is a zombie thread?!

Mayamama Sat 26-May-12 09:04:26

Mixedberry and Kt1991, of course it is not naughty - saying someone is naughty implies they fully understand what they are doing, how annoying it is etc, yet continue doing it on purpose just for the sake of it. Thinking that of a baby, even a young child is rather unhelpful and is not going to do anything useful to live at peace with your child or yourself in the long run. To "discipline" and use a "naughty step" for children of any age is also rather doubtful practice. WHat will you do with your 5 year old who refuses to stay there? Raze their self worth to the ground? Beat them up? Or with your 10 year old whom you have disciplined this way?
Actually, from my experience I can say as soon as I am assuming the naughtiness, the child will realise that their innocent act was something worse and will start doing annoying things much more on purpose - so if you will act this way, you set yourself up for problems rather soon.
I suggest you read "THe aware baby" or "The baby book" which both recognise children for what they are rather than for what parents unaware of developmental stages read into their children.

Timandra Sat 26-May-12 09:20:55

A time out step or naughty corner is a way of moving a child out of a situation and giving everyone a chance to calm down. When it is used positively it can work but you don't have to have a specific place with a special name.

You can leave the room with the child, pick her up, show her something out of the window, produce a different toy, offer a drink, etc. These things will be just as successful and probably a lot more pleasant at this age. If she really loses it you probably automatically give her time out by reducing your communication and waiting until she is over it.

Time out as a punishment will not work at this age - I'm not an advocate of it at any age really. I'd rather children learned from the natural consequences of their behaviour wherever possible.

She does need to learn that there are times when she has to hold your hand, put dangerous objects down, etc. By always distracting her you can avoid conflicts but you won't actually teach her an important lesson.

Yes use reins, a backpack or whatever works for you to reduce that conflict but at the same time she is not too young to learn that you are in charge. She needs this to help her feel safe. So if you need to hold her hand to cross the road ask her to cooperate. If she refuses tell her firmly that she needs to do it. If she still refuses you have a choice. If you have time and it is safe you can wait until she is ready to do as you asked and refuse to move on until she does. Alternatively you can take her hand or pick her up, quickly cross the road and deal with the aftermath on the other side. Either way she will then learn that there are times when she has to do as she is told. That will keep her happier and safer in the long run regardless of how cross she is at the time.

You're right to pick your battles. Fighting over every little thing makes everyone miserable. Just make sure that you give clear signals when you have decided that she must comply with a request and deal with it calmly and swiftly.

Pochemuchka Sat 26-May-12 11:06:51

You've been given some great advice on here so not much to add really. Redirection and distraction are two of my favourite tools when dealing with my 15 m old DS.

I couldn't help but notice that this is the second thread where you've spoken really unkindly about your friend's 3 year old DD. To say you dislike a child of this age is really uncharitable and I would hate to think any of my friends judged my 3 year old DD and my parenting the way you do.
Most parents do the very best job they can and each developmental stage throws up its own different challenges. FWIW my DD is very polite and aged two never needed a reminder to say thankyou or please, however, she does sometimes now. The problem is, at 3 they seem so mature and grown up because they can speak fluently and even express ideas and opinions but the bottom line is, they are still tiny and have a lot to learn. I have certainly found the 3 year old stage far harder than any of the others and my DD doesn't tantrum at all. The hardest part has been managing my own expectations.

I think you will look back at your judginess when your DD is 3 and feel a bit embarrassed about it.

Goldenbear Sat 26-May-12 13:29:26

I think you can only distract at 16 months and as has been suggested on here already, some reins or a backpack would allow her to walk near roads without the worry.

I have a 13 month old who is already a bolter but even at her tender age, is learning to walk in the right direction on pavements. I don't like reins but don't want to keep her in the pushchair until the park as this would make her very unhappy, so I'm resigned to buying her a backpack thing.

I have to say I think you have quite high expectations with regards to what you can teach a baby. My 13 month old does the pinching, even biting but she's not trying to harm any of us when she does it, she's doing it to show affection, she thinks she's kissing us. I have a 5 year old DS and we all just treat her as the baby of the family, that has no malice in her actions. My DS is very protective of her and laughs off the physical experimentation on her part that kind hurt a bit. We've shown her how to touch people nicely and to her credit the pinching has stopped and she has stopped nipping me. Still bites her Dad on occasion but he never shows her how to touch him softly so she probably thinks he doesn't mind!

I also think you are being a bit mean about the 'bad' parenting of your friend. As children get older they understand more but that also means that they have independent thoughts that don't always match your own!. My baby, with all her bolting and physical demands is a lot easier than my 5 year old (5 this month) as he knows what he wants, will negotiate for something, knows that there are more than 2 choices for an outcome in a given scenario, identify and explain the one he wants and will be a bit relentless in trying to achieve the outcome he wants. He will accept what I say but if it's not want he wants to hear, the acceptance can be delayed. He is fairly intelligent so is quite sophisticated in his reasoning. Sometimes we are convinced by him and we will be won around on things we initially said no to. Youay think that's bad parenting when you have a baby that won't answer back but we want him to develop his own character and think for himself, if you do that style of parenting sometimes that means they won't always remember to say please or thanks and sometimes even at 5 we have to prompt him but this does not mean we are bad parents. At school he is apparently very polite and he is very compassionate and kind.

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