Monday, September 28, 2009

"No Means No"

How does an 11 month old know he's doing something he shouldn't?

I know perfectly well that it's the reaction that I make to his conduct that makes the naughty deed more enticing for him. If he's chewing on the remote and I ask him for it, "Jax, that is not toy. Please give that to Mommy." He pulls it away from me and shouts at me. Often times I will say "Oh thank you for finding the remote Jackson. Momma was looking for that." And that seems to go over a little better. However, the idea that the remote was NOT a toy - isn't being conveyed.

Why is it when he grabs for the vertical blinds over the patio doors and I say "No No, Jackson." That just makes him want to pull and tug on the expensive blinds? He knows what "Come here, please" - "Please give that to Momma" - "Can you give Daddy a kiss?" - "Turn the pages" all mean. That's because these are fun things to do. How am I suppose to make "Don't touch the blinds, please" fun? "Don't roll over while Momma's changing your diaper" - "No No, we don't throw our food on the floor" - "No touch - that's owies" "Hot, hot Jackson." These are not fun things for them. They are not things for me.

He's reaction to my discipline is shouting and yelling. He will stiffen his whole body, stretch out his neck and yell. Two things that are the most tempting for him are my keys and my wallet. If he catches a glimpse of these (which is always out in public) he will stiffen, scream and throw a fit. It's always easier to just give them to him.

I know perfectly well that there are household adjustments to make when babies become mobile. We have plugged the electrical outlets, we have a permanent baby gate installed at the top of the stairs. We put our coffee table in the basement, we covered the sharp edges of the end table. But I don't think it's necessary to completely remove absolutely everything that a baby may get into. I refuse to put everything lower than knee height just so he won't get into it. He needs to learn that these things are NOT toys, and they aren't to be touched. Children are completely capable of learning that.

My mother runs a daycare out of her home. Aside from the bin of toys that is put back in the children's play room after the children leave - you would never know she watched children for living. These children do not touch her potted plants, they don't touch her picture frames on the end tables, they don't pull out objects from the lower cabinets. She has never needed cabinet stoppers because the children know that it's off limits. They know what is a toy and what isn't.

I will not find a new location for the DVR and wireless router. They are below the tv, right at Jackson's eye level. There will always be something with blinking lights that will grab his attention. If I remove everything that distracts him, these items will always be the "new thing in the room" when they return. I shouldn't have to put away the lamp on the table, the wine bottles on the rack, the bathroom garbage and the cat. Just because the are at knee high height, does not mean that it's Jackson's.

How do I get a child who refuses to respond to the words "No No", and actually gets fueled by the command - to obey what is off limits?



Jamie said...

ahhh...i could've wrote this myself. let me know when you get the answer! we even left our coffee table out but we can't put any drinks on it, so its kinda pointless. hahaha

Kelly said...

Have you ever read "To Train Up A Child" by Michael & Debi Pearl or "Shepherding a Child's Heart"? Those are some really good books on child training.

Veronica said...

I totally understand your frustration. We've gone through the same thing over here too! It just takes time and you being consistent to help them understand their boundries. That is really neat that your mom has a childcare business. My mom also had one until about two years ago. She used to run it out of her home and I used to help her because we were living with her at the time. I definitely learned a lot from that time!

Kate said...

Let me know when you find an answer! I read Love and Logic all about choices, but right's hard! Just be consistent that's what I try to do!

chadandnikki said...

Good for you for making him adjust to you. It's hard, trust me I know. Just keep working on it, that's the only advice I have. One day it'll click.

Mom and Dad said...

Parenting is not an easy job especially at this age when they are so mobile. Everything at eye view is exciting to them.( new world has opened up to them) They are more fascinated with what they cant have unfortunately. I like that you are not moving everything in your house and Jax needs to learn what he can and cant have. This is the hard part of parenting. Try to avoid using the " No " word. When you see him into something that is not acceptible give him a toy that he can play with saying, "you can have this but not that" and have him trade with you. If he doesnt freely give you the toy then just do it yourself. If he throws a fuss, then just walk away.
With your blinds, just direct him to something else or pick him up and remove him. Be consistant and dont give in because he will remember the one time you gave in and think he has free rein. You are doing a great job, April. Remember I am always here and just a phone call away!!

Stephanie said...

I wanted to stop by and say hey. I saw that you have stopped by my blog a couple of times this past week, and I am so glad! It is always fun to meet a new blog friend. I apologize for not coming over sooner. Crazy weekend!

And I know that it can be so hard to be a parent sometimes! Learning how to correct your child is a very difficult thing. It makes it hard because every child is different too! You will find something that works for both of you. I promise. Don't let it wear you down!

Ms. Sarah said...

We started 123 magic at the age of 1 with nate it worked great. if you would like I could make you a copy and send it to you.

We didnt remove anything. pad anything. We told the kids over and over again what they could touch and what they couldnt. Eventually it sticks. He is just testing his limits.

croleyc69 said...

I'm not really sure what works the best but my boy was my best, now my girls that's another story. I just refused to put anything away. I didn't have anything out that could hurt them but I wanted them to know that certain things was Mommy's pretty things and they can't touch that. For the most part it worked. I think just saying the word " NO" alot just makes them want to do it more. Every child is different what works for one may not work the next time. Good Luck {{HUGS}}
P.S My Carly at 5 months is trying to get my picture frames already.

September said...

Oh, that Jax is a Cutie!! How hard it would be to say "no" to him!
It sounds as if you are already half way there to training him the limits of his boundaries.
I also would recommend the two books mentioned in a previous comment. We have read them, and used the principles, and have had great results.
Hang in there friend..
BTw- your blog looks great!

Paige said...

April- I would love to make jackson a tag. you can do it through etsy, or you can just e-mail me what you want and I can send you a paypal invoice. whatever you want to do!! thanks so much for your continued prayers- it means a lot especially as we get closer to delivery!

amanda said...

no means no. and he has to know you mean it. be consitent and firm. and be the mom first and friend second. ppl always has 'how i do it' and this is my answer i don't take any crap and i'm their mom then their friend. i don't know if that helps. but that's 'how i do it'.

Holly said...

Just keep repeating to him what he is and isn't allowed to have. Kyndra has eventually learned what she can and cannot do but it's taken a lot of no's!

SayraH said...

That's till a toughy for me. I've been working @ a daycare with 2/3 year olds for 11 years (not my chosen career, mind you, I'm going back to school)..The only thing I can do is put children in time-out for 2 minutes. I've hard to become very firm, but still loving, through the years. No does mean No. I stand by my guns, And I mean what I say.
Just remember, say what you mean, and mean what you say always. It'll all pan out! :))
((hugs & blessings))

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Myra said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Myra said...

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