Disciplining a 3 year old is very different for us, than discipline a 2 year old.
When a 2 year old does wrong, you immediately need to discipline your child or you are really not training them, because they have already forgotten what they did.
Now, that Jackson is 3 years old, he remembers how and why he was bad hours later.
Our main struggle with Jackson is when we go out into public. At the house, he knows his boundaries and when I see him getting bored we just do school time and he is fine.
When we go out in public, the rules seem to be changing for him, and he has total melt downs. He refuses to go bathroom bathroom (you know what I mean) out in pubic, and I really do think that is part of us behavioral problems when we are out.
We watched Supper Nanny the other night, and realized we were ignoring some of his defiant behavior out in public because it was the easy thing to do (Supper Nanny is a good show).
The major instances we had last week was when I took him to Walmart one night. He has been having nightmares every Friday night (please pray these go away), and so he had a 3 hour nap the next day. After his nap, he was very hyper and did fine while we were in Walmart. Then, we go to check out, and I let him down to help take the groceries out. After we are done, I try to put him back in the cart, and he has the biggest breakdown ever. He starts screaming and crying and I literally cannot get him in the buggy. I was not going to not put him back in the buggy, because if I did that it would teach him that if you yell, scream, and kick, you get your way.
I somehow managed to get him back and in, and thought long and hard on how to discipline him for this. After getting some advice, I decided we would try to talk to him when we got home about his actions. Charlie took him to his room and asked him if he was bad in Walmart. He said yes, and explained to Charlie on how he would not get back in the buggy. After feeling comfortable that he knew exactly what he had done, Charlie gave him a spanking with our spanking spoon. I really think he felt remorse for his actions for once. He also is going through a phase where he does not want to hold my hand and sometimes he tries to run out into parking lots...ah!
So here our some of our guidelines with Jackson
- If he does something that can hurt himself or others he gets a spanking (with our wooden spoon). I usually do say, if you do that again you will get a spanking and bring out the spanking spoon. If we are in public, I have found it very helpful to just whisper in his ear in a calm voice, that what he is doing is wrong and why his actions are wrong. I proceed to explain to him what is going to happen if he keeps jumping on the chair, etc. I certainly do not want to embarrass him in public.
- Sometimes when correcting his bad attitude we just correct him over and over again. For instance, he went through a phase where everything was "no." Every day probably a hundred times a day, I would say, "Don't tell mommy no, unless I ask you a question.Then, if the answer is no, say "no ma'am." I was so excited after about 5 days, he would say these entire sentences back to me!
- Also, sometimes I do give him time out if he is into everything and not listening. However, if he intentionally throws something at his sister, he gets a spanking. I do not give more than three spanking a day (which has only happened once). If he keeps on disobeying, I do put him in his room and make him stay there for 3 minutes (since he is three). I think a time out chair, or mat can be helpful in training your child over and over again on how they should act in certain situations or how that should speak to you.
The best Christian practical book I have read is "Don't Make Me Count to Three" by Plowman. I think I need to read it again right now (She has a new book entitled "No More Whining" that I really want to read soon).
Ps- We went out to eat for the first time since my birthday with just the four of us. Abigail wanted to get down, and she was tired, so needless to say it was not a fun experience. I do not think we will be going out to eat again with a waitress for another two months, just to recover from that experience. I really think 1-2 years old is such a hard age, because they do not understand so much and they cannot communicate accurately to you what they need.