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Old 01-08-2007, 11:08 AM   #1
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When spankings don't work...

I have a 7 year old son that is out of this world. Spankings have never worked for him, although I still do it, almost daily. I've tried taking things away from him too. At one point, he had nothing in his room but a bed and his clothes and it was that way for about a month. It didn't help. Sticking his nose in the corner and making him stand there, didn't work. I am at my witts end and don't know where else to look for advice. He does very well in school in fact an honor roll student. He just has discipline problems.

Any advice? Thanks

 
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:34 AM   #2
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Hi lawd, I figured out when my daughter was 3 or something that spankings didn't work. My husband kept telling me to do it so I tried it and then realized that it doesn't work. Tell us more about your son. I'll bet he is angry with daily spankings! I think that spending quality time with your child doing calm things and letting him know that you care does more than any "discipline". I'll bet you all are down to only negative interactions? Are you a screamer? If you are, I have my own screamer story that I can tell you.

 
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Old 01-08-2007, 06:46 PM   #3
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Spankings don't work. Period. They just help relieve the parent's frustration. There are better ways. But, first, what are the problem behaviors of the child? How often? What does your child have to say about these behaviors? Every behavior has behind it some positive intention, some need that is trying to be satisfied. True, that need may have become distorted; but, by finding out what the need is and helping to satisfy it can significantly reduce the problem behavior.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 06:59 AM   #4
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Yes, negative interactions have increasingly become more of our lives than ever. I am not normally a screamer, but yes I do it with him, because if I don't he doesn't seem to "hear" me. It's like I'm talking to a brick wall. Just some examples of the stuff that he does:

Saturday, wanted to go to the park. We went to the park together, he wouldn't listen and stay with me. He kept running waayy ahead of me and I don't feel that I should put a leash on him to stay with me. Other times at the park he will try to pet a strangers dog, after I have told him not to and why. SO I got fed up Saturday and told him lets go, we are going back home. When we got to the parking lot, he diliberately runs out in front of a car. This car had to slam on breaks to avoid hitting him. I tore him up for that too though. Not even 5 minutes later, he goes in the kitchen and turns on my dishwasher with the latch open.

If we go to the store no matter where, grocery, Target, Wal Mart whatever, he acts up and again he doesn't stay with me. I've tried making him hold my hand, but that seems to stir up more conflict. He has no discrection for cars so its hard to go anywhere without having him by the throat.

He doesn't like to go to the store, so now I wonder if he misbehaves on purpose because he knows we'll go home. Its embarrassing to be fighting with him in public because I can see people looking at us.

He's a really big whiner, he cries ALL the time. And over everything. I can't stand a crier, so I tell him he needs to dry it up and quick.

He does like to play soccer and that is something we both enjoy doing together, and there have been times where he acts up there and the coach has to get on him. Or if he gets in trouble at school, or at home I have taken him out of soccer for that day and he couldn't play. Him and my daughter played on the same team, so during practice I would take her and let her play, and make him sit beside me and not play. Anything that I have ever tried, doesn't seem to bother him. After I spank him, and I mean wail on him, not 5 to 10 minutes later, he's doing omething else.

Although he is 7 now, he's been thrown out of daycare because of his defiance. He has gotten a tad better about things since he started school, but is still driving me insane.

His father is not around and hasn't been for about 2 years, so I wonder if possibly that has something to so with it. But then again, his father wasn't part of his life but maybe twice year before that. My son doesn't mention him, but I'm just wondering if being the only "male" in the house is hard for him.

He needs to learn how to respect me and I feel that I shouldn't have to be on him constantly and with a tight leash. I am independant and want my kids to be the same way.

Now here is the bathroom problems. He's been using the toliet since he was 2. He is now SEVEN and still has a problem with doing number 2 in his pants. He uses the bathroom, doesnt even attempt to wipe himself, and I have to force him to sit there until he goes. Sometimes when he does it at school, he sits there and stinks all day and it doesnt bother him. That seems to be a big pattern, nothing bothers him.


Does this help? Thanks for any advice!

 
Old 01-09-2007, 08:02 AM   #5
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Lawd, I would stop spanking and screaming. I went to a conference once and there we were told that when children become fearful (like they do when they are screamed at and spanked) they CANNOT listen and therefore learn. The only way that your son is going to learn is to communicate with him. (I have experience with the above because I backed myself into this spanking and screaming corner and wondered why she didn't listen and learn. She seemed very unaffected also. This conference turned on a light switch for me and I started to change MY behavior.) When you need to teach your son something do it with words and calmness so that he can learn. Your son sounds out of control with his behavior because he hasn't learned to control his behavior. From his viewpoint everything probably seems pretty chaotic. He does something wrong and then there is screaming and violence and then this is when he turns off all hearing, thinking and learning and then it just seems to happen all over again. Your son really doesn't have to be punished for his behavior he just needs to be taught a better behavior.

Try to hug your son more. When he is not misbehaving go up to him and hug him, talk to him and interact. I am sure that you have gotten so angry with him that it has been hard for you to do this without having bad feelings toward him. He is just a scared little boy who has no idea how to control himself. If he resists your hugs (which my daughter did) he might be angry with you. I have talked to my daughter numerous times to repair the damage that my screaming and spanking did to her. The things that we have had to repair are: 1) she was nervous and anxious, so we had a talk about my former screaming (this occurred between her ages of 2 - 4) and once she understood that my screaming made her this way and I didn't scream anymore, she was able to relax. 2) her not hugging me back, so we again talked about the screaming/spanking and we figured out that she felt that she was bad because I did this to her. Once we talked about this she doesn't hold back when we hug anymore. Did she feel that she didn't deserve my love or was she angry still about it or both?

Her actual problems didn't come out until I stopped screaming and spanking her. She was probably always in the fear mode and used to repressing her feelings. Before this she just acted like nothing bothered her. It is probably just their way of surviving. Once I stopped my terrible behavior she was "allowed" to relax and then her feelings started coming out.

Once I realized my mistakes I went to my daughter to explain it to her. I told her that I realized that I shouldn't have been yelling at her and spanking her and that I was going to change and that I was sorry. Whenever I slipped up and screamed I apoligized. You could also explain to your son that now you all need to work on teaching him better behaviors.

Lawd, please don't tell your son that he can't have feelings! When he cries please talk to him about this. He needs to let his feelings out. You are sort of trapping him in this hell by not letting him express himself. Was this how you were raised? My daughter is almost 8 now and she cannot figure out her feelings, I always have to figure them out and then ask her if this is how she feels.

Your son will learn how to respect you when you show him that you respect him. I had to learn this lesson to. I didn't respect my daughter. Children only learn respect when the parent shows it to them.

You know, my daughter had bowel problems too. I always wondered if it was psychologically based. He might be holding his bowel movements and then they sort of are forced out a little bit because of the pressure. There is a lot of theory on children holding bowel movements and psychological issues. It is funny how our children had the same issues here.

And for any doubters out there who think that lawd still needs to spank - one definition of insanity is to think that you can continue to do the same behavior and think that you are going to get a different outcome. If you want a different outcome you have to try something different.

Last edited by Sannah; 01-09-2007 at 08:06 AM.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 08:04 AM   #6
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Here is my take on it from reading your post. I believe your son desperately wants to be in control at all times over all situations while at the same time he desperately wants to be the center of attention, positive attention or negative, doesn't matter.

Spankings don't typically work on strong-willed children. They simply don't care and it's attention they're getting and they're in control of that particular time. If you love your pediatrician, schedule an appt., with just you and the Dr. Explain what is happening and request a referral to a counselor. Most insurance plans will cover a certain number of visits.

Your son will benefit and so will you. You will be given valuable tips on how to redirect his controlling behavior.

Until all this starts for you, I would also suggest not giving up on your discipline. You said he doesn't like to go to the store, so he acts up. You're right! You also said you don't feel you should have to leash him to you. Well, one of my sons was always running ahead, etc., I would give him one warning, then we held hands. Sure, he threw a fit and often I would get the disapproving looks. We stood there holding hands until he calmed down. Then, he had to hold my hand a minute for every year of his age. During the hand holding I NEVER talked to him. Once the time was up, I let go, told him why it happened, then went about our business. There were several trips in which we had to do this 5 or more times and it wasn't fun, but he eventually got a clue. Honestly, if he hadn't held my hand, I would have resorted to a leash with an explanation "I want you to listen to me and be safe and when you do so, you don't have to be hooked to me."

I've done the holding hands thing with all of my kids and for us it really works.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 08:24 AM   #7
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Re: When spankings don't work...

I totally agree with you "AllTheLarsons" He is very strong willed. I was referred by my pediatrician to some specialist but I think it was more so to see if he has a learning disorder. But get this, he is an honor roll student so NO doctor can give me the ADD/ADHD spill because of that. He just has a discipline problem. I will try to talk to him more and see what I can get from that.

But the other poster "Sannah" No, my son is a very affectionate boy. He loves to hug, and I do hug him when he's been good. He tells me at least twice a day that he loves me. He won't go to bed unless he tells me he loves me. HA~ That part is cute though.

My daughter and my son couldn't be more different. I couldn't have hand picked or asked the lord himself for a better child than her. I just look at her a certain way and she gets the message. She hardly ever gets into trouble though.

I may need to see if my son and I can get into counseling because our relationship is really not good at this point. It seems like all I want to do with him is let him play in his room and myself in another room.

What would you suggest to say when trying to talk to him? What to say when he acts up again, which will probably be tonight when I pick him up from school? Do you have an example?

 
Old 01-09-2007, 08:26 AM   #8
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Re: When spankings don't work...

P.S. the hand holding is something that I struggle with because he fights me when I force him to. I've had to drag him around because he whines and won't move his legs when I do it.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 09:08 AM   #9
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Quote:
Originally Posted by lawdhamurcy
No, my son is a very affectionate boy. He loves to hug, and I do hug him when he's been good. He tells me at least twice a day that he loves me. He won't go to bed unless he tells me he loves me. HA~ That part is cute though.

My daughter and my son couldn't be more different. I couldn't have hand picked or asked the lord himself for a better child than her. I just look at her a certain way and she gets the message. She hardly ever gets into trouble though.

I may need to see if my son and I can get into counseling because our relationship is really not good at this point. It seems like all I want to do with him is let him play in his room and myself in another room.

What would you suggest to say when trying to talk to him? What to say when he acts up again, which will probably be tonight when I pick him up from school? Do you have an example?
Lawd, what do you mean "no" to in your first paragragh? I did see in the third paragraph, however, that you do have some bad feelings because you want to be in a seperate room.

How old is your daughter?

I would talk to him about the issue that needs to be addressed at the time. When he won't stay with you, get down to his level and calmly tell him why it is dangerous and why you want him to stay with you. Of course he will need to be reminded, he is still learning. If he does it again calmly tell him again what you want him to learn. Discipline is really about learning it isn't about punishment. Give me an example of what might come up after school.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 09:19 AM   #10
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sannah
Lawd, what do you mean "no" to in your first paragragh? I did see in the third paragraph, however, that you do have some bad feelings because you want to be in a seperate room.

How old is your daughter?

I would talk to him about the issue that needs to be addressed at the time. When he won't stay with you, get down to his level and calmly tell him why it is dangerous and why you want him to stay with you. Of course he will need to be reminded, he is still learning. If he does it again calmly tell him again what you want him to learn. Discipline is really about learning it isn't about punishment. Give me an example of what might come up after school.
The "no" was just to tell you that he likes to hug and he doesn't seem upset with me.


My daughter is 8, my son is 7

When he was in K, his teacher would often complain about him bothering other children when class was in session. He has a much better teacher this year, because she gives him extra work to do. The last conference we had, she said that he most of the time is the first one done with his school assignments, so she gives him extra work to do (which he doesn't mind) ~in other words something to keep him busy so he doesnt bother anyone else.

But just things like that, number 2's in his pants. I even told him that I wouldn't be surprised if Santa brouht him a pack of diapers for Christmas, but that didn't seem to bother him either. When its time to go, he ignores me and wants to continue whatever it is that he's doing, he will run outside into tha path of traffic, again has no discretion for cars.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 09:20 AM   #11
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Re: When spankings don't work...

I don't believe in the quick diagnosis of ADD/ADHD. I think you need to insist on a behaviorist.

From reading through your posts again, I also believe your daughter knows full well she's the "good" kid and so does your son. Of course now he is going to do his very best to be the worst "bad" kid he possibly can. Your daughter is going to do her very best to be the ultimate "good" kid. Just wait until that is threatened when your son starts to behave.

There will be many times during "hand holding" that the child will throw a huge, loud fit. When that happens, you just stop where you are and say once "You will need to hold my hand until you calm down and then for 7 minutes more while you are calm", then that's it, if you have to stand there holding his hand for 30 minutes while he's having a fit, that's what you do.

I think your son is picking up on your mixed reactions. At this point, he knows he can last longer than you can. It's a game and ultimately he wins every time.

Hang in there, be strong, be proactive. It's very difficult, I know, when you're at your wits end.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 09:32 AM   #12
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AllTheLarsons
At this point, he knows he can last longer than you can. It's a game and ultimately he wins every time.
I can actually laugh at this, because its' true. What would you suggest for this game that he plays. He tests me everytime!! I do warn him the first time, and I tell him what I am going to do if I have to say it again, and he does it again and takes off running because he knows what is going to happen. I'm trying to get him to stop before I get to that point and realize I mean business.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 09:50 AM   #13
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Quote:
Originally Posted by lawdhamurcy
When its time to go, he ignores me and wants to continue whatever it is that he's doing, he will run outside into tha path of traffic, again has no discretion for cars.
Again, Lawd, I think that he just hasn't been able to learn much because he has been in the fear mode when you are disciplining him. He can learn, you just need to start with this new technique that you haven't tried yet. And don't try it once or twice and say that it doesn't work. You have to stick with it until he starts to learn. If you are angry when you are doing it he will go into the fear mode and he won't learn.

Last edited by Sannah; 01-09-2007 at 09:52 AM.

 
Old 01-09-2007, 02:08 PM   #14
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Re: When spankings don't work...

Covering all bases is always wise when it comes to your child. Have he had a mental evaluation buy child sychologist? It won't hurt to have this done if you haven't. Sometimes, theres a physical disorder we aren't aware of. I have a friend that had simuler bathroom problems with her daughter. due to an unseem emergency, she learned that her daughter had a twisted bowel from birth, something that is not detected during a regular physical exam. Because of this problem, her daughter dreaded going to the toilet. Who knows what the problem is these days! What ever it takes to reach the answer, make it happen. Best of wishes

 
Old 01-09-2007, 02:16 PM   #15
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Re: When spankings don't work...

It's likely that talking to him won't do anything. You need somehow to show him. He is likely expecting you to counter his behavior with verbal statements. If you say nothing, but look at him, silently, you will maintain the power. It's a lot like ping-pong. He does something which is like hitting the ping pong ball to you. He expects you to say or do something which is hitting the ping-pong ball back to him. The ping-pong ball represents power. When he says or does something and you DONT respond, you maintain the power. He will then say or do something again, likely at a higher level, - he's sending another ping-pong ball in hopes of you responding and sending the ball (power) back to him. If you DONT respond, you gain even more power. Because this is a power/control game, he will escalate. He will escalate to the point of driving you crazy so he can get his power back. You need to have several strategies in place to respond in ways which at least keep the power neutral. For example, natural consequences can be set up, you can respond with very simple sentences which comment on his behavior, eg, "I see that you are yelling louder" or "I hear your anger." It's quite a game and he's been playing it a lot, and winning. It won't be easy to get the upper hand. Counseling for you would be a good idea to help support you in your dealings with your son. I doubt your son would benefit from individual counseling but might benefit a lot with peer group counseling. Good luck

 
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