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Saturday, February 4, 2017

Punishment. Who does it really hurt?

Do you remember when your parent would say to you “this is going to hurt me, more than it hurts you?” Do you remember thinking “yeah right?” I get it now. Now that I have kids of my own, I totally get it. Sorry about that mom. Punishment? Who is it really hurting? Can we talk? Can I be frank with you? Yes? Okay, good. The answer to this question is ME!!! It really hurts me. Ha! It’s funny because it hurts on different levels.

Let’s break this thing down first. I grew up in an era where corporal punishment was accepted. Now before you guys come for my mom’s head, please remember she is dead and I will cut you. (Okay not really, but you will not slander my mom.) When I was a child it was acceptable to whip your child. If we are being truthful it was ok for our neighbor to whip us as well. Our street was a close knit one. We were all family. It takes a village, so I’ve been told. I lean towards not whipping my kids. I think redirects, time outs, punishment or being grounded it harsh enough. If you aren’t sure what these things are I will tell you what I know.

A redirect is when you divert the child’s attention to something other than what they are currently doing. This could be one time or several times. (You just never know with Baby Lex.) A time-out is when you give your child a break from whatever bad behavior that were just doing. Sometimes this last for a few minutes to maybe an hour. (You just never know with MJ.) Punishment or grounded is when you take things away like privileges, toys and games. A punishment can last for a few days or a few months. (You just never know with Xai.)

So now can I tell you how this hurts me? Is now a perfect time to get on my soap box. May I have your attention please? It hurts so much to be the executioner. Judge? Alright! Jury? Yes indeed? Executioner? Nope! I don’t want to. Why? Well I’m glad you asked.

Let’s take Baby Lex first. She is a baby. She is curious. Everything excites her. She wants to touch, see, and TASTE EVERYTHING. Right now her favorite thing is the dishes in the Lazy Susan. This excites her because she can turn it by herself, she is able to get to the dishes inside, by herself. She sees us in the kitchen, so she knows what dishes are used for. Because of this she is constantly cooking up trouble. I try to let her have a few dishes. It should be noted that only the plastic bowls, cups, and Tupperware are in the Lazy Susan. I’d like to think playing with the tops and bowls are helping to define her fine motor skills. So when the bowls become an abundance I have to redirect her to her play area. You may have a few dishes not all. And definitely not all spread out on the kitchen floor. She will play with her toys a while then it’s back into the kitchen to more dishes. That’s when I come in with another redirect. We do this about 7 times a day.

Now let’s talk time outs with MJ. She truly just wants to do her own thing. By that I mean my own thing. She wants to do what I am doing. Well accept all the good things like laundry, picking up the floor or trying to keep order to chaos. Sometimes she has to be reminded that she can’t do what I do. I have to remind her that I am able to do these things because I’m an adult. Here is where the time outs come in. After being reminded who I am, she gets a nasty little lip smack, attitude and a tad disrespectful. Then I have to give her a time out. She needs to stop and think about what she has done. A time out to regroup. If you think about it we as adults take time outs often. Sometimes life comes at you kinda fast and you stop and find your place or footing again. Depending on the severity of the infraction the time out could be a short one or a long one. Sometimes I have to remind her that she is still in time out, which leads to more time on her moment.

That leaves us with Xai and the punishment or grounding. Taking. Things. Away. I’ve taken phones, Xbox, 3DS, and allowances. I’ve even vowed to not buy him anything else until he gets his act together. The thing that hurts the most here is that darn cellphone. I absolutely cannot stand not being able to get in touch with my child. His band teacher is temperamental. Sometimes he has practice, sometimes he doesn’t. Sometime he lets the kids go early sometimes he makes the stay late. There are times when he is able to catch the activities bus and then there are times when he has missed it. He needs that phone. I need to be able to communicate with him on his whereabouts.

You see now why I needed to get on my soapbox? We needed to talk about how disciplining your child also affects you. I don’t want you guys to think I don’t know the importance of it. Because I totally am here for when you do something there are consequences and repercussions. I just did not know how much punishing my kids would affect me. So, yeah, punishment? Who does it really hurt?


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