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DWD: Parents as rule making facilitators

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  • DWD: Parents as rule making facilitators

    I enjoyed the discussion of rules on pages 23-24 of "Discipline Without Distress". At first I was a bit turned off by the use of the term "rules", as that seems to imply authoritarian rigidness. But after reading the descriptions of the three types of rules, I think I'm ready to bring this term back into my life . They are what we in our house had termed "agreements":

    Permanent Marker Rules: the 10% of rules made only by the parent. Non-negotiable, and apply to everyone; friends, neighbors, relatives, kids, parents

    Washable Marker Rules: the 80% of rules made with input from kids and parents. They must work for everybody, and anyone can bring them up for discussion or change.

    Pencil Rules: the 10% of rules made only by the children. They can be changed at any time by the children, and all must abide by them. They cannot affect safety, mutual respect, or core values.

    So, how are you doing on this mix? What percentage of the rules in your house fall into each of these categories? Are most of your rules up for discussion?

    What are the permanent marker rules in your home? What are the pencil rules?

    One of our permanent marker rules is "no hitting". One of our pencil rules is that stuffed animals must be gently placed in a comfortable-looking position, not tossed nor thrown into place.

    WBB
    Last edited by WildBlueberry; 11-13-2008, 01:21 PM.

  • #2
    Originally posted by WildBlueberry View Post
    One of our pencil rules is that stuffed animals must be gently placed in a comfortable-looking position, not tossed nor thrown into place.
    Awww, I love this! This is a great pencil rule, and I just wanted to say that I think it's adorable!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by WildBlueberry View Post
      So, how are you doing on this mix? What percentage of the rules in your house fall into each of these categories? Are most of your rules up for discussion?

      What are the permanent marker rules in your home? What are the pencil rules?

      One of our permanent marker rules is "no hitting". One of our pencil rules is that stuffed animals must be gently placed in a comfortable-looking position, not tossed nor thrown into place.

      WBB
      Ok I would say that does describe our rules well. We have few rules.

      Permanent marker rules: (please bear in mind our oldest has autism and can be verbally aggressive and physical)
      1. No physical violence
      2. No verbal violence

      Pencil rules: don't eat in the family room. We like to edit it on movie night,

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      • #4
        Ok here is something I'm needing help with. James sometimes is refusing to hold my hand in the parking lot. I think I might need to add this to my permanent marker rules. This to my mind is a safety issue. On the other hand is it? He has never run from me but he could but I really don't think he would. Key word: think. We have compromised sometimes with him holding my sling. Today though he refused both, . I was not sure what to do. I had Jeremiah in the sling and I find unless James says it's ok to carry that it would be disrespectful of me to do so unless he was choosing to run from me. Then I put that under safety and his safety trumps all.

        Ok...so what would you do...make hand holding a permanent marker rule? Then on the other topic how do you enforce that rule either naturally or logically when it's also a safety issue. Should I force him [to hold my hand]...knowing he's never run off on me?

        Should I just trust him to not run? I never had one of my kids refuse to always hold my hand. Heck Jackie at 12 years old still reaches out for mine or anyone's hand to hold. Jessie and Jacob too.

        Did I mention that while James is rewarding, he's challenging too?

        Ok now to go see when my book in coming in,

        Comment


        • #5
          Hi Kandace,

          I think so much of this depends on the temperament of your child. For me, the "permanent marker rule" was more of a broad "parking lot safety" thing. When my daughter began wanting to walk without holding hands, we sat down and talked about it. We make a "washable marker rule" that she could walk without holding hands so long as she walked in between me and the row of parked cars (not on the moving car side), that she stayed right next to me, and that she would hold my hand if there was a lot of traffic. That worked for us. If she started to move away, I could just say "remember our agreement!" and she would stay close. If there were a time when she didn't seem able to stay next to me, then I would insist she hold my hand or let me hold on to the back of her shirt or something.

          For me, the "consequence" of not following the agreement (aka "rule") would just be that I would insist on holding her hand or an article of clothing. I didn't make a big deal out it. Then when we got home, we'd have a meeting on the couch and decide whether the agreement needed to be changed or if she'd like to try again to work within it.

          All this may be different if her temperament were different. I can trust that she'll stay next to me, and I also know her "wild" moods well enough to recognize in advance when we need to do something else.

          I know the DWD book talks about the age at which they can really handle their impulse control, but I'm not there yet!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by WildBlueberry View Post
            ....
            All this may be different if her temperament were different. I can trust that she'll stay next to me, and I also know her "wild" moods well enough to recognize in advance when we need to do something else.

            I know the DWD book talks about the age at which they can really handle their impulse control, but I'm not there yet!
            I like that agreement you all have. It makes sense and I do have a very good idea when he's in the "short impulse control" mode. Like I said he's never run from me and if we see a car, I'll point it out and he often steps in even closer to me. I wonder if by allowing him the "freedom" in less busy parking lots, he'll compromise in busier ones? I bet he would.

            Again thank you for helping me to figure this out. My copy should be here within a few days...I hope. I'm enjoying this book already, hehhe.

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            • #7
              Hi Kandace,

              I have a 2yr old that often doesn't want to hold my hand in the parking lot. She is very independent and will strongly protest if I try to take her hand or picking her up in this instances. What I do is try to keep very close to her sort of following her lead (ready to sprint if necessary) while trying to guide her to where we need to go. Of course, if it is really busy and I worry about her safety I do pick her up and try to explain why.... I understand this would be difficult with more than one child... sometimes if I offer for her to hold my bag, wrist, etc she agrees... my 2 cents.

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