As usual, when I’m at my parents’ house and someone is acting up – off he goes to time out…
“You have to be more patience…” said my Dad as I sent Lil’ A to time out for the 100th times because he thinks jumping on top of piles of his old clothes that I just neatly folded is so much fun than climbing up the windows railing, which got him several warnings already. “You will have more headache when he’s a teenager…” Dad went on.
From the way my Dad was talking I can tell he was 90% teasing me – because he knows Lil’ A can drives me insane for sure.
“You used to make us standing in the corner with one leg up – that is time out!” as I remember one of those dreadful childhood punishments.”And remember your big black belt? That belt and me were best friend, right?” Then we all started laughing.
“Yes, but it’s different now! We love our grandson more than we love you!” my Mom chimed in.
Maybe she’s right…because my Mom and I always had a fit about how I discipline Lil’ A. In her eyes I’m a mean mommy when she had a power pinch that used to gave my thighs ‘badges’ that will last for weeks! She’s been acting as Lil’ A’s attorney/defender, whatever you wanna call it since we moved back to Indonesia so of course the boy will always tried to seek her help when he’s in trouble! Sometimes she would even stepped in and ‘rescued’ Lil’ A from his time out and I’ll be fuming at her.
With my Dad, I can still reasons with him that time out is necessary at this stage along with taking away the little boy’s privileges such as his toys/movie(s) after counting to three. He gets me but not my Mom!
When I was little, corporal punishments were daily part of our lives like so many others who grew up in the 70s – 80s (and prior?) and since I wasn’t exactly the sweetest little girl growing up – that belt became my friend with some other physical punishments. Until one day I think I was in 4th grade, too caught up in play time and didn’t realized it was already dark…too scared to come home, I hid in a small chicken barn a few houses down the block.
Oh did that caused panic to my parents! Not only them some of the neighbors also helped trying to find me. I hid for hours, can’t remember how long but someone did found me – she took me to her house, gave me a cup of hot tea. I cried and begged her not to tell my Dad because I will be in deep trouble.
Eventually, I came home and was scared to death but instead of getting my usual ole’ beating, my Dad picked me up, sat me on his lap and apologized to me. He got tears in his eyes, he just held me for the longest time and kept telling me he loves me. Since that night – the corporal punishments stop in our household but I still remember them.
I wouldn’t want Lil’ A to have that kind of fears, besides physical punishments will only hurt for a few seconds or minutes and eventually the child will learn how not to feel them. So if I have to be a mean mommy and stick to my gun when I said NO then be it…he can sit and cried his head off but he will never meet that belt!
So, how do you discipline your child, especially toddler? Share here what works and what’s not working for you.