As a parent, what do you do when time out just doesn’t work anymore? Can you ground a toddler? Where to? To play with her toys in her room? That would be her ideal situation. Spank? GASP. Never…
Never say never, right? When faced between leaving the toddler in charge of their world or take back control. Well, I choose control, and after yet another episode of ‘let’s hide in the clothes racks at Target because its freaking hilarious,’ I calmly checked out, took the kids out to the car, and delivered a smack to my toddlers right butt cheek. She was so appalled (I’d never spanked her before, or anything of the sort.), that I didn’t know whether to laugh or feel guilty at her reaction.
Eyeballs popping out of her little head in surprise, I calmly buckled her into her car seat, explained why she got what she got, and headed to the back of the van to let out a hysterical bit of laughter. (C’mon, it was only one little smack.) Usually a mom that tears up at the thought of yelling at or punishing my child, I took spectacular delight in how well that worked. She “I’m sorry Mommy’ed’ me for the rest of the day…priceless.
Since the pilot episode, I have only had to actually break out a little slap a couple of times…the thought of it is what scares her into submission. It’s reserved for safety issues. Running away in the store, parking lots, streets…pretty much the long list of hazards toddlers find their way to I guess.
What finally broke me? Seeing other parents do it. Yep, I followed their lead. Gasp again. Usually a ‘do it my own way’ type, I conceded after too many headaches caused solely by uselessly repeating punishments that just didn’t work. I had to up my game.
Now, if I could only figure out a way to get her to eat her dinner in less than 2 hours…
Happy Disciplining, Parents!