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How do you make your kids listen to you?

Discussion in 'Toddlers' started by teju, Mar 27, 2009.

  1. teju

    teju Senior IL'ite

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    Hey Ladies,
    I have always wondered whats the right method of making kids understand you and agree with you so that they follow your instructions. Has anyone mastered the art of convincing kids?
    I easily resort to blackmailing my kid and distracting my kid.
    Is there anyone who never resorts to blackmailing?
    When I say blackmailing it also means bribing. For example: Saying the kid- If you eat this banana, I will let you out to play. Or if you go and sleep now, I will give you a chocolate when you wake up, or I will take you to the park, etc.

    I also want to know what are the consequences of this method of parenting.
    What are the best ways for avoiding blackmailing/bribing.
    How to make the kids agree with you without fights in a amicable manner.
     
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  2. Aadhusmom

    Aadhusmom Gold IL'ite

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    Very interesting questions Teju - will have to think about it. But off the top of my head I will say the following - A lot depends on the child's age and understanding capacity dont you think? You cant use the same approach for a 1 year old and a 4 yr old obviously and yet both would be toddlers. The younger the child the more the need for distraction and fewer shorter "explanations" whereas for a child older than 2 or so distraction wouldnt work much (going by my son here - it might be different for others). DS is 20 mnths now and tantrums have decreased remarkably these past 2-3 mnths for us mainly because he talks well and can therefore verbalize most of his needs/wants - i'm in the process of teaching him to verbalize feelings too and I think that would help a lot. I dont do much distraction - mainly because he is very very persistent and difficult to distract once he has his mind set on something. I do bribe on occassion but its rare and I have never bribed with food. What works like magic with my son is the bribe of reading a book (I can see eyebrows being raised but its true :) ! Instead of "convincing" him I usually make an activty sound exciting - like if he's reluctant to come for his bath I get all excited about the fun we'll have playing in the water and the "special" green towel he gets afterwards; diaper change - we try to guess which animal we'll find on his dipaer tonight and then sing a special song abt that animal....you get the idea. This works 90% of the time. We have our bad days of course but those are getting fewer..thankfully :)

    Looking fwd to reading what everyone else has to say..

    Vanathi.
     
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  3. rithi

    rithi New IL'ite

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    Good or bad I don't know, but I have to make a deal all the times. Do this and you'll get this. Do this otherwise you are not getting this and something like that. My daughter is four and half.

    Rithi
     
  4. teju

    teju Senior IL'ite

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    hi Vanathi,
    Thanks for letting me know your methods. You are a lucky mom, I would say!!
    Just reading is enough to tackle all disciplinary issues for you. Isnt that wonderful? Thats also positive because his knowledge increases. So this can never be classified as a wrong method.
    Good luck and congrats that its easier for you.
    Am still waiting to hear more from others.
     
  5. Pavarun

    Pavarun Silver IL'ite

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    Teju, you are asking a million dollar question. What would I not give to figure this out for my 3.5 old...

    I don't think there is one right method that works for everyone - depends on the childs temperament and the same methods that worked at year 1 may not work at year 4. Personally I think years 2-4 are the hardest (going by my experience here) because they understand some but still want to push boundaries.

    Here are some techniques I use:

    1. Creating excitement and fun around things like brushing teeth, showering is the best way to get my DS to cooperate. For showering, we "eat the shower" (hold the shower hose in his hands and spray water in his mouth) so he loves to shower. For brushing teeth we pretend his brush is a car and his mouth is a road (sounds whacky?) so most days it is not too bad.

    2. Putting together a timetable/chart with things to do has been working. My 3.5 year old gets points (stars) for being a good boy the whole day. A certain number of points (say 10) can be cashed out as a new toy (a car) - Basically it is bribery but in a more disciplined way and it forces them to keep working. He loves to go out with DH, so sometimes I use that as a carrot.

    3. For certain things like washing hands, eating vegetables I keep saying that not washing causes germs to come and then he will get sick. Same way if he does not eat his vegetables he will not grow up to be big like daddy. My hope is that if I keep saying this (and I also do it) hopefully he will do it as a matter of habit.

    4. I use timeouts for serious offences (kicking or hitting me, spitting on the floor, throwing/breaking a toy after repeated warning etc)

    5. Denying privileges - like when he throws a tantrum at a store then he cannot go to the play area to play and has to stay home.

    In spite of all these my DS is a handful. I'm eager to hear what other moms do.
     
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  6. Aadhusmom

    Aadhusmom Gold IL'ite

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    Oh I am lucky Teju but I do have bad days (today was one :-( ) when the usual tactics fail and I'm left waiting for bedtime.... Reading is the usual and most reliable of my bribes true but of course it doesnt tackle every issue I have. Its something we both enjoy so guess I use it more and more. I cant use it when there is "defiant" behaviour though - you know when they go "I wont" ; for that I've started issuing consequences these days and that seems to work most times....when its a really "nasty" kind of day then nothing works :)

    V.
     
  7. Riyasmommy

    Riyasmommy Silver IL'ite

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    and I thought I am the only one who keeps looking at the clock every 10 minutes to see if it's Riya's bed time yet!

    Raj
     
  8. asha_karthik

    asha_karthik Silver IL'ite

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    Good thread Teju. I am sure am going to learn lot of new methods from the moms out here.

    1) With little K distraction used to work the best when she was 1-2 years old. Not always these days.
    2) These days, I do more of talking and talking, explaining what is right and what is wrong, in a way that appeals to her. Example: She hates dirt and 'dirty' things. Easy way to get her into the bathroom is to show some small dirt in her teeth or body (invariably she has some colors in her body most of the time - thnx to her crayons and pens) and tell her that it looks dirty.
    3) I used to do little bit of blackmailing and bribing when it came to eating coz can't afford to compromise there. blackmailing is stopped these days. and the bribing is not real bribe of giving her something. she luckily gets excited when i say i am going to give her something. i either say its in my hands closing my palm or hidden somewhere in her room. and that something can be one of her usual books or toys. Since she gets excited by "its hidden and you hv to find it", it works the best most of the times when i am feeding her something.
    4) With throwing things and some of those actions that we really cannot reason out - one thing i hv found in her is, if she thinks i am angry/sad, she loses her mind. i found this when once she was throwing one of her toys, and i was getting wild at her. i asked her to pick up the toy in a stern voice and after 2-3 times she did that. but still i was upset on y she threw it in the first place and i kept quiet (timeout that i hv mentioned earlier in another thread). she again threw the same toy. now instead of getting wild i wanted to try something different (that was the time Riyasmommy had raised a question on this throwing things around). so i brought her close to me, and asked "are you angry with something?". she replied "K angry illa, amma daan angry". thats when i realized she thought i was upset and thats the reason she kept throwing things not knowing how to ask me for the reason. after this incident, we both hv got into a deal.. whenever she is angry, she can feel free to give me a 'biiggg hug'. though she forgets it all the time, i keep reminding her "are you angry, if yes, you can give me a big hug now" and she does that instead of throwing things. these days, since i liked this method the best, i hv also introduced a 'bigggg kiss" till her frustration is forgotten. she likes it too.
     
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  9. teju

    teju Senior IL'ite

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    hi Pavarun,
    thanks a lot for your wonderful suggestions.
    1 - creating excitement- this a wonderful suggestion that I can use immediately.
    2 - Timetable with points and charts is indeed a nice idea. Though this is kind of a bribe, but atleast its creative not spoiling the kids.
    The other points are also very good. Let me start using these methods and see where I go, in trying not to blackmailing and bribing!!!
     
  10. teju

    teju Senior IL'ite

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    hi Vanathi,
    Yes, as long as the reading works for you, you are one lucky mom!!
    One more question for you: How long do you think this period of your child will last? I am until they are 4 or 5 we continue using these methods? Then what?
     

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