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Was this appropriate punishment for 2.2 year old?

(24 Posts)
Procrastinatingpeacock Tue 14-Jul-15 20:04:08

Just put my DS to bed without a story because he was messing around at bedtime and I can't work out whether it was good discipline or a bit OTT.

He is a clever boy and his language and understanding are both good. When he was messing around I told him several times that if he didn't do as I told him he would go straight to bed with no story. I counted one, two, three (he usually responds to this trick), and when he continued I followed through on my threat. It was pretty much immediate as I was trying to put his pyjamas on when he was being a pain, so I just took him straight upstairs, told him he was going straight to bed without a story because he didnt do as he was told, and left the room.

He cried for about 5 mins but I can hear him up there now babbling away so he is not too heartbroken. I just wondered whether from a cognitive point of view he is a bit young for this kind of discipline. Will he have learnt from it? He does understand "positive" consequences (e.g. If you are a good boy in the supermarket, we will go to the park afterwards).

SchroSawMargeryDaw Tue 14-Jul-15 20:07:15

I think he's probably a bit too young for it, my youngest is 2.1 and a very good talker and very good at understanding language and requests but I think he would get a bit confused as he would forget why I wasn't reading it as being upset would have made it slip his mind.

MarchLikeAnAnt Tue 14-Jul-15 20:08:37

I think he is much too young.

MarchLikeAnAnt Tue 14-Jul-15 20:13:12

Try using 'when' instead of 'if', then your not giving the child so much power.

bettysviolin Tue 14-Jul-15 20:13:36

It's fine. You weren't horrible or shouty or scary. You just didn't do stories because he was messing around. It is very useful for children, even aged two, to realise that parents are human and have limits that can't permanently be pushed. In fact, it's reassuring to them. You set a boundary about behaviour and your punishment wasn't mean (I came on this thread to say, Ooh I don't believe in punishing children but you weren't being harsh) You just cut out the treat at bedtime. No problem.

Procrastinatingpeacock Tue 14-Jul-15 21:21:16

Thanks, will ponder some more!

ch1134 Tue 14-Jul-15 21:27:01

I can see why you did it and I think it's important to follow through on threats. But it's a shame to miss out on that bedtime bonding. I can't offer a better alternative, but I'd try to keep the end of the day snuggly and positive, no matter what.

horseygeorgie Tue 14-Jul-15 21:31:52

I did that with my DD at that age and tbh it worked brilliantly. Even occasionally now I can use it but I don't even have to follow it through anymore, the threat is enough. I always made sure that she understood why and we had a nice goodnight.

horseygeorgie Tue 14-Jul-15 21:31:55

I did that with my DD at that age and tbh it worked brilliantly. Even occasionally now I can use it but I don't even have to follow it through anymore, the threat is enough. I always made sure that she understood why and we had a nice goodnight.

futureme Tue 14-Jul-15 21:33:47

I wouldnt do that. Whatever has happened in the day i want to connect with them before they sleep. They always get a story and a chance to cuddle and chat.

BertrandRussell Tue 14-Jul-15 21:39:31

It's funny- I'm quite strict, but I can't imagine ever saying "no story". For me, bedtime was sacrosanct. I haven't got a solution- except to think maybe just withdraw when the messing about was happening? Stop trying to deal with pyjamas and say "I'm just going to sit here with my book- let me know when you're ready to put your pyjamas on and have stories"

Always try to de escalate rather than escalate

tumbletumble Tue 14-Jul-15 21:43:15

I think that he's probably just about old enough to understand "if you do / don't do this... then this will happen", and I think this is often an excellent disciplining technique, but like other have said I personally wouldn't do it with bedtime story.

horseygeorgie Tue 14-Jul-15 21:47:18

My DD doesn't just have one story a day at bedtime. We read alot and I make sure we still cuddle and chat. Not once has it been a situation that has escalated, my DD is a dream generally at bedtime. It can just be useful to have another iron in the fire sometimes.

JimmyCorkhill Tue 14-Jul-15 22:02:54

A great book is 123 Magic.

In a nutshell you use counting to three followed by a time out (1 minute per year of age so a 2 year old gets 2 mins). If the child is misbehaving you say 'that's one'. No emotion/raised voices/lengthy explanations. If they continue, 'that's two'. Again, that's all you say. If they continue 'that's three' and you take them to their room and leave them on their own for the time out. They can do what they like in their room, it just gives you a break for a moment. When time is up you let them out. No discussion/apologies/lengthy discussions (but you can have a cuddle!)

It basically diffuses the moment. You don't have to think up punishments. You don't sit about feeling guilty or unsure about how you handled the situation.

I never even read the whole book but it has been fantastic for us with DD1. She understood the system really quickly and the only times it hasn't worked for us is when we have deviated from the system and started adding extras/overly explaining things to her. I will be using it with DD2 (2:4yrs) but don't think she is quite ready for it yet.

I can't recommend it enough. The author explains how a toddler's mind works and why they get into 'trouble'.

horseygeorgie Tue 14-Jul-15 22:07:25

That sounds like a good book, wish i'd heard of it a year and a half ago lol!

futureme Tue 14-Jul-15 22:10:30

I dont really like time outs perosnally (we use time ins if necessary!) although i know lots do. At that age id rather deal with the issue or distract if nec. The book i found most helpful is how to talk so kids will listen and listen so kids will talk. Im not sure if the examples go as young as 2 but the mindset helps to see life from a childs point of view and work positively rather than with threats which inlike.

horseygeorgie Tue 14-Jul-15 22:12:01

whats the difference between a time out and a time in?!

poocatcherchampion Tue 14-Jul-15 22:15:18

I don't support time outs either.

Yes we sometimes don't have a story if thry don't sit down to listen to it. Thry don't really cry - continual messing about means thry are just too tired to care so we just zip on to cuddles and sleepy time. I can't be doing with flogging a dead horse. It is not always a bonding experience.

Oly4 Tue 14-Jul-15 22:20:22

We send our DCs to bed with no story if they play up and the threat of it is usually enough to make them stop. But we have followed through too. It's just one night, the next night we're All back to our usually cuddly selves. We've also used it from a young age

JimmyCorkhill Wed 15-Jul-15 09:25:35

Well the time out from 123 Magic isn't like the Jo Frost naughty step time out. It just means taking a breather from each other for a couple of minutes. You could just leave the room you're both in instead of moving the child. Quite often DD1 would sit and play with a toy. It just stops the situation from escalating. We never called it a time out, i just used that term on here. I really like this system as it deals with the immediate behaviour and doesn't impact on the rest of your day. Also the child has been made aware that their behaviour was unnacceptable but gets a cuddle after a few minutes so knows that their world is fine again. Sometimes we could use 1,2,3 two or three times in succession, much more often saying 'that's one' did the trick.

Bellebella Wed 15-Jul-15 09:29:58

I wouldn't do it myself, my son is 3 months younger and he just would not understand that at all. His communication and understanding skills are very behind so he would just look blank.

However if you are sure your child understood it then I think you are fine.

HippyPottyMouth Wed 15-Jul-15 09:35:40

We occasionally put DD (22 months) to bed without a story if she's messing about because she's too tired and grumpy to be sensible. I'm not cross with her about it, I sit with her on my lap, offer her the milk and book, and if she's not cooperating, tell her she's too tired to stay awake any more and needs to go to bed.

waterrat Wed 15-Jul-15 14:06:49

I think you have to be careful about not overestimating understanding. now my son is 3 I look at 2 year olds and they seem so little and like babies to me - even though I can see their mothers are chatting to them....the leap in communication from 2 to 3 is so enormous, I think once you are through it you will see they may not have quite understood as in depth as you thought.

I don't believe a 2 year old however bright would really know why they were in bed alone - they miht know in the moment that they were being 'naughty' ie. doing something you didn't want them to do - but will they really connect it to being alone in bed?

dont think it really matters as its not a really nasty punishment but you may be wasting your own energy.

bettysviolin Wed 15-Jul-15 21:14:08

I like BertrandRussell's solution.

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