Mothers, with our children growing and changing constantly, so are we. Disciplining a child is different for everybody based on their own upbringing, their culture, their personality, even their gender. Figuring out what works for you and your child might take some time, but know that you are not the only one struggling! Even before I had kids, I thought I knew how I would discipline my child. I had it all figured out; I was sure my child was not going to get time outs, they were going to get spankings.
Things change when you have kids.
This premature decision was made because of my childhood. I don’t ever remember having time outs when I was young. I remember being YELLED at if I got in trouble, and the intensity of my dad’s voice was enough to make me get my act together. This is how I learned I’m not to grab things from my brother and sisters.
I also remember getting spanked for the real bad stuff, like the time I stole dimes out of my parents coin jar, and then lied about it when my dad asked. The spanking taught me that it’s wrong to steal money, and it’s wrong to lie to my parents.
So, I grew up knowing it would be the same for my children. I used to think about it with confidence: Yeah. No time outs, just spankings! Then they’ll learn! Kids that get “time outs” are wusses. I’m going to be a tough mama! My kids will act RIGHT! Of course all of these plans for my children were made even before I MET my husband!
Well, life happens when you’re busy making other plans. I met my husband and had kids. My son turned the age that other parents dread, that age where kids do the wrong things and try to get away with it. I tried yelling, which seemed to have worked so well for my dad. Have you ever yelled at a 3 year old boy, thinking it would make him stop? But the only thing that changes is that now he thinks he’s playing power rangers and your the evil Rita Repulsa? I found myself dodging his kicks. Or how about when I heard my 3 year old yell at my 1 year old? It seemed like he was mocking me and I thought, do I really sound like that when I yell? It was a nice wake up call.
Once my son was old enough, I tried spanking. I made sure to give him a warning that if he continued his behavior, he would get spanked with the comb.
Mothers, if you do choose spanking as a way to discipline, please don’t ever hit out of anger! I didn’t just whip out the comb in the heat of anger, I was careful to let him know why he was going to get it. However, it still didn’t feel right for me to hit my little child’s butt with a comb! The “tough love” approach that I knew I’d have so many years ago seemed uncomfortable to me in the moment. Spanking weighed heavy on the “tough” side and not enough on the “love” side.
I considered time outs. At first, it didn’t work because my son would sit there for a minute and then forgot why he was sitting there. His imagination took him away from his punishment as he started walking his two fingers along the wall. After time out was over and he did the same wrong thing a few minutes later, I knew this wasn’t working either.
So now ladies, let me introduce to you…what I call… the “booty pinch.” I don’t have to yell, it’s not as harsh as a spanking, and not as easy-going as a time out. I actually got the idea from my grandfather, God rest his soul. He used to say, “I’m going to snap your butt!” And for a man that was in his mid 70’s, his hands worked fast, I wouldn’t even see it coming! It was a quick little pinch that stung for a second. So “snapping the butt” has evolved to the “booty pinch.” I’m now at the point where all I have to say is, “do you want me to pinch your booty?” And they straighten up. They know my fingers pack a pretty powerful pinch. I FINALLY found something that works great for me! Yesssss! Feel free to use the booty pinch, and let me know how it works out!
What works well for you? Please share below, it might help someone!