Imagine your child is now 25-years-old and has knocked on your door for a surprise visit. What kind of person do you hope to see in front of you? What characteristics and life skills do you hope he or she has?
Hi, I have a daughter who just turned 5 and a 20 month old son. My daughter is constantly giving us trouble, at home and at day care. I'll start with "she actually bit someone a few weeks ago at school. I couldn't believe it at her age. Then when I asked her who she bit, she said she didn't bite anyone. So, she is already lying to us, too.
Active (or reflective) listening is an effective tool of communication. One that will serve you well as you parent your child and (sooner than you may think) the adolescent that child will become. Active listening is the art of observing and listening to feelings, then reflecting them back. Active listening does not require that you agree with your child’s feelings, but it allows your child to feel connected and understood—something all people need—and provides an opportunity to explore and clarify those mysterious impulses known as emotions.
Rudolf Dreikurs taught the importance of being both Kind and Firm in our relations with children. Kindness is important in order to show respect for the child. Firmness is important in order to show respect for ourselves and for the needs of the situation. Authoritarian methods usually lack kindness. Permissive methods lack firmness. Kindness and firmness are essential for Positive Discipline.
Power struggles create distance and hostility instead of closeness and trust. Distance and hostility create resentment, resistance, rebellion (or compliance with lowered self-esteem). Closeness and trust create a safe learning environment. You have a positive influence only in an atmosphere of closeness and trust where there is no fear of blame, shame or pain.
I have been hearing questions such as, “How can I get my two-year-old to pick up his toys by himself?” (You can’t.) “Why does my teenager say she’ll empty the garbage and then avoid doing it unless I nag?” (She has a gazillion other life questions plaguing her.) “Why won’t my kids be responsible and just do what they know they should do?” (Do you always do what you know you should do—especially when someone else demands it of you?)
My wife and I do not know what to do about our daughter's rebelling. She refuses to do anything that we ask her to do. She has been caught drinking, smoking cigarettes, shoplifting, and possibly using drugs.
I am excited (and a bit overwhelmed) with all of the progress we made in 2018, and the many projects we have planned for 2019. I’ll be turning 82 this year and I am more energetic than ever about Positive Discipline!
Children under the age of three do not understand “no” in the way most parents think they do. (And a full understanding of “no” doesn’t occur magically when the child turns three. It is a developmental process.) “No” is an abstract concept that is in direct opposition to the developmental need of young children to explore their world and to develop their sense of autonomy and initiative.