Sunday, February 20, 2011

Of Pacifiers and Punishment.

With the ominous approach of "terrible two's" comes temper tantrums and the beginnings of discipline. Personally, I am against spanking and hitting [or whatever variations you can come up with]. If you'd like me to expand on why these are my views, please don't hesitate to ask. Anyway, time-outs typically work very well with Athena. For instance, this morning I told her she couldn't have her binky [I'll touch on that topic in a moment] and she hit me on the leg. I put her in time-out for two minutes - one for each year old she is - and when I let her out, I explained to her what she did wrong and told her that I love her.

However, one problem I'm having is sometimes she'll repeatedly do the one action that gets her in trouble, despite putting her in time-out for it before. Athena loves to climb on the kitchen chairs, but it's unsafe because if she falls, she'll have a very unhappy landing on our tiled floors. I've put her in time-out many times for this, but she still continues to do it. Because I don't want to hit her and time-out isn't getting through, what other form of discipline would work? What kind of discipline do you use on your children or what kind was used on you? Is/was it effective?

On to another topic: pacifiers. Athena is extremely hooked on hers. I told the nurses in the hospital when she was born that I didn't want her having one as a newborn, but she somehow ended up with one anyway. I think throughout infancy, pacifiers aren't necessarily a big deal, but as they get older and their speech starts developing, pacifiers can really get in the way. Sometimes I can hardly understand what Athena is trying to tell me when she has her binky in her mouth. I have this horrific vision of Athena starting Kindergarten with a binky. I've been told to just throw all of the pacifiers away, but what if she gets sick and needs them for comfort? I try to only give them to her at nap time and bedtime, but she somehow manages to find them in obscure places all over the house. I'd like some advice, please. Do your children use a pacifier? When do you plan on breaking them of it? How do you plan on doing it? I read once that one parent buried the pacifiers along with some seeds in the ground and grew a 'pacifier tree.' I've also heard of mailing the pacifiers to the Binky Fairy [a relative or friend] to give to other babies when they're born. I thought those were very creative.

In other news, check out my best friend's blog. He's Athena's godfather. :]


  1. I... never had a pacifier.

    But the time out works, it was what was done to me and it always took me a while but I'd eventually learn. I use it when I baby sit my little cousin (2 years) but I tell him why he's going in time out first, doesn't usually do certain things again. There's always slips though.

  2. I think the time out might just need to last longer, the 2 minutes isn't sinking in

  3. I'll try that instead of talking to her afterwards. I give her warnings and stuff first; I never just send her to time-out without reason.

  4. @Sean, I'll try three and see how that goes. I've just been told one minute for every year.

  5. Timeouts: 1 minute per year is perfect. What will work is consistency. I can not stress that enough to myself and other parents. That is the number one thing that works no matter what for of discipline you use. Sometimes it takes a while (a few minutes to months, depending on the age/reason/ect...) but if you ALWAYS do the SAME thing for the SAME reason, it will sink in. 2 years old is a hard time cause they start to understand but have very short term memories. She WILL keep doing the not allowed or even unsafe things, but she WILL eventually learn that she can if you're consistent.

    Soothers: I used a soother for Isaac and Brianna, both weaned themselves around the 6 mth mark. Olivia is a thumb sucker. I HATE it! Brianna was attached to bottles. Like you, I only gave them to her at nap and bed (though they were always out of reach so she couldn't get them during the day). However, she was going on *3* years old. Enough was enough. We had a bye-bye bottle party. Made a cake and everything. Packed up all bottle type things into a box and brought it to the dumpster. She was sick a few weeks later and boy was it tempting to go out and buy a bottle! However, letting her use ME as a comfort thing was enough for her. I'd snuggle her as much as possible and that was it. Now, a lot of people will say, oh she'll give it up when she's ready. However, you've already noticed it's impeding her speech. I know it's hard, but it's time for it to go.

    Sorry for the novel!

  6. No way, THANKS for the novel! That's such a good idea! It's just difficult because Athena doesn't understand the concept of a party or throwing something she's attached to away. If I do it at this age, it'll have to be cold-turkey. If I wait to do it, I'll do something creative and fun like that. It's all about when.

  7. Heard about your blog thorough Sean Kenny. I'm living with my two nieces right now so I can Identify with your stories. Keep up the good work.

  8. Thank! Sean is my best friend and Athena's godfather. :]
    How old are your nieces?