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Positive Discipline for the 2 year old??

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  • Positive Discipline for the 2 year old??

    I am having great difficulty employing positive discipline techniques with my 2 year old. I have read "Discipline without Distress" and am working on "How to talk to kids will listen..." and really love their suggestions for acknowledging feelings and working through emotional situations. But, they seem more geared for kids pre-school aged. Our struggle now is the ability for me to inspire some cooperation. There are certain things DS just needs to comply with (for physical safety reasons or to avoid damaging property/home) and he refuses to take me seriously! He giggles when I sternly ask him to stop and since he love to play chase, if I make a move to catch him and physically stop him, he gets the biggest kick out of it. He is SO smart and understands things very well, so I know the concept is not beyond him. So, looking for some tips on helping my son to understand that there are some things I really mean business on and are not negotiable. If I can lay the groundwork there, then I know less serious things will fall into place. HELP!!!

  • #2
    PLUS: would like a better understanding of where 2 year olds should really be with these things-from an AP perspective. The pressure from the "outside" for a perfectly compliant child can be very frustrating.


    • #3
      There are a couple other books that you may find helpful for your toddler. "Attached at the Heart", written by API's cofounders is a great source. There's also "Playful Parenting" and Harvey Karp has a book entitled "Happiest Toddler on the Block" both of which may be useful, although there may be parts which you find don't support AP. Check our 8 Principles (link at top of page here) as well.
      But at this age, distraction really is the best tool. It sounds like he is very playful and you can use his game as a way to understand that he's trying to communicate w/you. He's letting you know he's into fun and wants to interact. Take time to interact first and then explain what you need once you've met his needs.


      • #4
        My son does the same thing! This is how I feel about the situation: so what if he giggles; in fact, good for him. The fact that children should respond with fear and shame to a "bad" behavior is an adult concept, not necessary or developementally appropriate for toddlers. The giggle is probably a sign that he knows he is not supposed to do it, but doesn't have the self control to act otherwise. Over time he will stop giggling.

        Look my son would make a b-line for the road when we first moved to our new home. He loved when I chased him! So I gave him a choice, don't run in the road or go inside b/c your safety is too important. that worked sometimes. Then I said, "if you want to go for a walk, just ask." That worked wonders, but it took persistence and patience.

        My son use to run every time he needed a diaper change. So what we did was run round and round until he was tired, then did the diaper change.

        Do you see where I am going?

        Otherwise, I physically redirect my kid. I grab his hand and say "I understand you want to run/play, but your safety is important. Look a squirrel!" or "I understand you want to play in the neighbors yard, but we need permission. Hey let's hop like bunnies!"

        Don't buy the hype that un-ap parenting means toddlers are better behaved.your timeout mamas are having the same "compliance problems". What matters is calm persistence and creativity; overtime your kid will get it, but never completely. Because they're kids!