Barbara, Is putting a dab of hot sauce on the tongue considered inappropriate consequence for bad language or sticking the tongue out after the "two warning/time out" technique has faltered?
From: A Mom, Ohio
Dear a mom,
You know, I started to toss out your question, as in not post it, because you neglected to say how old your child is. But the truth is that that kind of consequence feels abusive to me and I would say that it's inappropriate at any age. I know there are those who will disagree with me (and I'm hoping we'll hear from some of you), but I would prefer to see a consequence that relates behaviorally to the behavior: There's nothing that upsets a kid more than a parent who doesn't respond. So if you tell him, "If you can't speak to me in a respectful way, then I can't answer you." If he's under 11 or so, I'd ask him to make a list (or make it together) of language you consider disrespectful & body language, too. (You may not like the idea of actually listing the words, in which case you can use code, as in "the f word," "the b-word," "the s-words" (stupid was always high on my list) etc. Once you are sure he knows what the violations will be, when he uses one of the words, you very pointedly zip your lips and turn your back on him, or simply ignore him. Again, this depends on his age, but in my experience, this works at any stage of development because children want our responses and reactions when they want them.
What are some other parents' ideas for this?
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