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How the hell do you discipline a toddler that finds everything funny?

(14 Posts)
FairfaxAikman Mon 23-Nov-20 14:58:58

DS is two and a half and not particularly verbal (odd word here and there and "chatters" but unintelligibly).
He is increasingly becoming a challenge and it's impossible to discipline him because he just finds it funny.
It's getting to the stage that some of what he's doing in dangerous.
For example today he climbed onto the window sill in the conservatory and began hitting the glass with a wooden baton. He's also one for pulling his hand out of yours and running off.

If he climbs on stuff (table is a favourite) I can spend hours putting him back on the floor to no avail.
I've tried time out but we spent two hours putting him on the stool only for him to see it as a game and was just getting up while giggling all the time.
Stern voices and looks also result in giggling.
It's not that he has no boundaries or that we are not trying to enforce them, it's that we can't because he just laughs at us.
I've ended up losing control and really shouting at him - I'm at my wits end!
He's a very sweet child in other regards, and full of fun but we have no control!

OP’s posts: |
Harrysmummy246 Mon 23-Nov-20 15:25:42

Time out doesn't really make sense to a child of that age and they don't have impulse control.

Pulling off from you? Well they're either on reins, in a push chair or in a carrier on your back...
Distraction. Is he getting time to run about? What are you doing to help language development?
Are there things he is allowed to jump on/ bash/ climb? DS is allowed (well ok, sort of...) to pile up cushions on the sofa and jump on them. And he has a toy hammer he can hit things with etc. I'll only ever ask him to sit on the stairs for deliberately hurting the dogs or parents and if he won't apologise. He hates that. He's 3y5mo now though

Scoleah Mon 23-Nov-20 15:29:57

This was my daughter!
What eventually worked, was praising good behaviour and not rising up so much to the bad behaviour.
So if she climbed for example I'd put her down tell her she wasn't to do that as she might hurt herself etc, then go straight to something she enjoys doing and clapping and rewarding it, loud claps, cheers etc
She enjoyed the praise a lot more. And reins or one of them cute backpacks with reins! They like they can pop their own belongings in there& carry them around so mine didn't mind them!

pipnchops Mon 23-Nov-20 15:33:33

I think at that age it is about removing them from the situation, explaining why and helping them choose an alternative activity. When he laughs tell him it's not funny and it's dangerous because.... And keep a straight face. He will be able to understand a lot more than he can say so just explain to him in a calm voice why he can't do what he was doing and remove him from the situation. In terms of running off maybe best to use one of those backpacks with reins on as a precaution as that is very dangerous.

corythatwas Mon 23-Nov-20 15:44:24

Do not, and I repeat NOT, keep escalating in the hope of making an impression on him. It doesn't matter if he feels contrite or amused or furious.

Your job at the moment is to keep him safe and the rest of the universe safe from him. Take the baton away from him, either keep him on reins, or strap him in the buggy at the first sign of him not walking nicely. Keep doing it.

If you keep doing this, calmly but firmly, he will eventually get the idea that there is simply no point in trying to do something forbidden because mummy will stop him.

Punish rarely and it will make more impact.

Also the brilliant advice from Scoleah about praising and distracting.

FairfaxAikman Mon 23-Nov-20 15:46:28

He does have reins in dangerous places like car parks.
However one of the other issues we have is that if we are not going the way he wants he sits down and goes like a dead weight.
We are very big on praising and redirecting (a lot of these techniques o learned while training dogs) but he just keeps going back to whatever he's not supposed to do.
I do try not to show irritation but it's infuriating at times.

OP’s posts: |
FairfaxAikman Mon 23-Nov-20 15:47:56

As for "keep doing it" and removing him - we've been removing him from it for about six months now. It's still not sunk in.

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m4d0 Mon 23-Nov-20 16:19:54

We have a high chair that has straps in it. This is the 'naughty chair' he gets three warnings and told in the last one if he does it again he will go on the naughty chair then he goes in there for 2 minutes if he does it again and left ( he us safe) then we go back in explain what he did abs why not to abs he has to say sorry before being released. We have been doing this a few months and now often being told the consequence if doing it again equals the naughty chair he stops. He is 2.5

Ohalrightthen Mon 23-Nov-20 16:52:28

I might be really off base here, but the fact that he's not really talking and isn't developing understanding after 6 months of consistency would be red flags for me in terms of development - have you spoken to your HV about any of this?

grassisjeweled Mon 23-Nov-20 16:55:04

'Look!! A SQUIRREL!!!'

Would work wonders when you want him to go towards something.

FairfaxAikman Mon 23-Nov-20 16:55:35

Ohalrightthen

I might be really off base here, but the fact that he's not really talking and isn't developing understanding after 6 months of consistency would be red flags for me in terms of development - have you spoken to your HV about any of this?


Yeah. Health visitor isn't too worried yet. He's an only child, not at nursery and all his classes have been cancelled for six months - it's currently being put down to the lockdown and less interaction opportunities. He does say some things, and definitely understands everything you say.

OP’s posts: |
grassisjeweled Mon 23-Nov-20 16:55:57

For example today he climbed onto the window sill in the conservatory and began hitting the glass with a wooden baton

^

Also, remove all bâtons. DD is almost 4 and we've just got the porcelain coasters back out.

FairfaxAikman Mon 23-Nov-20 17:15:15

grassisjeweled

For example today he climbed onto the window sill in the conservatory and began hitting the glass with a wooden baton

^

Also, remove all bâtons. DD is almost 4 and we've just got the porcelain coasters back out.


I did that. Of course I did.
The climbing is an issue though as I cannot remove every bit of furniture in the house. In addition to the windowsills, he overturns his armchair and climbs on it, climbs on my desk, the radiators, the electric fire in the living room, the arms of the sofa, the coffee table, the dining table, the back of the sofa (which is less than two inches wide) the headboard of our bed (wide, flat wood) and the bedside tables.

OP’s posts: |
Twobrews Mon 23-Nov-20 17:42:25

He obviously loved climbing so maybe invest in some things he can climb on safely or just make a pile of sofa cushions he can climb.

It also sounds like he is enjoying the attention that climbing is getting him, even if it's supposed to be negative. So maybe next time he climbs silently lift him down then go and do something and look like your really having fun doing it so he wants to join in.

Another good way to discourage is to use a favourite toy, get a teddy to climb up on the window sill then "oh look, teddy's fallen and he's hurt, he's crying, Teddy mustn't climb up there it's dangerous"

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