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PDF of Lesson Thirty-two
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Co-Parenting for Domestic Violence Class
Chapter Thirty-two, Discipline, Parenting tips, and Useful Information.
by Yvonne Sinclair M. A.. LMFT
This chapter is meant to give you parenting helps and information. Some discipline tips, communication tips, and ideas on how to help your child with some common problems they may face. Co-parenting can be hard at times. Anything that helps will come in handy. If both parents have the same information the child will benefit from double support and expertise.
Our first section will be words to use that are enforceable and get results.
Try this…..instead of this…
“I’ll listen as soon as you are talking calmly;” instead of “Don’t talk to me in that tone of voice.”
“You may go outside as soon as you have put on your coat,” instead of “You are not going out without your coat!”
“You are welcome to join us for a movie as soon as your room is clean,” instead of “Clean up your room now young lady.”
“I’ll start as soon as I know you are listening;” instead of “You never listen to me.”
So the trick is to make the statement positive instead of negative. Imagine how you would like to hear your statement. Children do not like to be ordered around, just as adult like to be asked not demanded of.
Here are some “power words” that can be used by children and adults.
MY POWER WORDS
My POWER words instead of these words
I don’t like to be teased SHUT UP
When you yell I get scared You are stupid
When you don’t share I get Mad You are just mean
Hey you that is my pen- Dummy that is mine
I really don’t want to play now Leave me alone stupid
I want your attention I hate you
I want to play with you Your game is lame
I would like to be alone Go away your annoying
Could you be more quiet please Stop the Noise
Whatever discipline plan or method you try, consistency is the key. Being persistent and consistent will increase your success.
Power struggles start at about two years of age. If you learn to side step these you will have a much calmer existence. A two year old will fight to the death in a power struggle. One way or another they will win. As a smart adult, we can learn to stay away from the power war and then we win. Here are some responses you can use to stay out of that power war. Your own attitude is crucial in these moments. Use your imagination to create more power issue side steppers.
“Probably so, I know…, Thanks for sharing that, Nice try, I hear you, I don’t really know, what do you think?, I get back with you on what I think about that, I will love you no matter where you live, I would be so sad if you were hurt, I bet you feel that way, I know that is what you think.”
Token economy is a wonderful method of discipline. In token economy the child’s behavior becomes the bad guy instead of the parent.
This system is used for positive reinforcement. The child learns to monitor themselves and the bad behavior become the “bad” guy instead of you. The child can be caught being good and replace points.
The most important message for the parent is you get what you notice. Keep the system simple at first. Be consistent. Let the child have input on what points to take away for what behaviors and also for the good behavior adding points. They will probably be harder on themselves than you would be.
Start with 1000 points at the beginning of the week for 7 years old and older. For younger children you can even do a daily chart depending on their ability to focus and their frustration levels. Keeping points will be an incentive to continue. Points are taken away for “bad” behavior. Violent behaviors cause most points to be lost. Be fair and consistent. When you catch them doing something extra or good….add points and let them know you caught them-you will get more of what you notice.
At the end of the time period you choose the remaining points can be used to buy extra privileges. Again, ask for the child assistance in determining how many points spent for certain things. Some examples you can use for rewards; Extra TV, time with Mom or Dad, favorite snack, extra hugs, that sort of rewards. You can use a chart if you like with stickers or a marker so the child can keep track of how they are doing.
Helping your child resolve issues with other children and even adults will bring security and increased self esteem to the child. Here is an outline on helping your child fight fair.
Fighting can be a way of communication and a way of resolving problems, if it is done fairly.
1. Identify the problem….Ask yourself, what is really bothering me, what do I really need or really want. State what is really bothering you.
2. Focus on the problem….the problem is the problem not the person. Try to focus on that and not on the person. Use careful language and talk nice.
3. Attack the problem…words are good here, “attacking the problem means you don‘t attack the person with names or threats….got it?
4. Listen with an open mind. That means you try to see the other side. Don’t interrupt when they are trying to talk, actually listen and don’t make up in your mind what you think they are going to say. Watch the sarcasm and tone of voice when you are talking. Go ahead and ask questions to get the picture right. Remember it is okay to agree to disagree. You can both be right and not agree. So put yourself in her place and if someone took something of yours without your permission you might feel like calling names too, especially if you did not have a personal anger plan.
5. Treat the other person with respect. This is even if you don’t think they deserve respect. This treating them with respect stuff is for you too. You are being respectful, appropriate, and keeping your power….yea!!! So some words to use; “you seem angry, I care about resolving this, do you want to talk now or later?” these are respectful words that may even get things resolved.
6. This is the hard one, take responsibility for your own actions. Blaming others takes away your power and may mean you are avoiding responsibility for your own stuff. No one can make you mad. Only you can allow yourself to be mad…don’t give them that power… - take responsibility and blow them away with an apology.
1. Identify the problem
2. Focus on the problem not the person
3. Attack the problem
4. Listen with an open mind
5. Treat the other person with respect
6. Take responsibility for your own stuff
Time out is used often as a cooling off discipline method. The child can learn when they need to take, what I like to call, a “personal” time out.
Time out suggestions for Kids:
*You feel like you want a time out to cool down, or collect your thoughts-you say “I am beginning to feel I want a time out.”
*You make an arrangement to come back and try again. For example “I will come back in ½ hour, or 10 minutes, or a minute, however long it takes for you to feel you can cool down.
*You go to another part of the house, or for a walk, or to your room, some place that can be your space for a while.
*You do something positive and constructive. Think about yourself talk and try to find a way to cool off and keep your power. Use your self soothing tools.
*At the time you agreed to return, return and try again.
*Respect the other person is essential. If they do not want to talk about what you want to talk about now you will need to find a way to cool off and accept that they have rights too.
*If when you return you is still not ready to discuss this issue. Make an appointment for a later time or date to try again
Time Out Rules for you:
When we are feeling our anger raise to a point it will interfere with our communication or calm thinking, taking a time out is a responsible thing to do. Time out does not mean walking out the door and slamming it behind you leaving your partner to wonder if you are coming back and where you are going. There is a specific formula or “rules” for time out so that the time can be a positive action.
Here are the rules for a healthy productive adult time out session. These rules can be used in co-parenting, even with phone calls. Instead of slamming the phone closed, which feels violent, use the time out communication format.
*Partner A is feeling a need for time out to cool down, or collect their thoughts says; “I am beginning to feel I want a time out.”
*Partner B takes a deep breath and discontinues the communication for the moment.
*An appointment to resume discussion is negotiated. For example “we will return to try again in ½ hour” or one hour, however long it takes for Partner A to feel they can cool down. Both partners agree what is good timing for them.
*Both partners separate to another part of the house or one partner goes for a walk or drive.
*Both partners do something positive and constructive. They explore their part of the dance and watch their self talk around the situation…such as avoid thoughts like “he/she is such a jerk, they never listen” Do not drink or take drugs during this time.
*At the appointed time both partners return to try again. If one partner says “I don’t want to talk about this now” then don’t.
*Respect for the other partner is essential. If the fact your partner does not want to talk precipitates anger for you, take another time-out.
*If when you return one of you is still not ready to discuss this issue. Make an appointment for a later time or date to try again.
In closing I would like to share some alternatives to lashing out. You can use these when upset with your child or your ex-partner.
*Take a deep breath and blow it out slowly, do it again and remember you are an adult.
*Find a paper and pencil and write as many positive helpful words for this situation. Save your list.
*Close your eyes and imagine how your words will or did sound to your child or your ex.
*Put yourself in a time out and think about where your anger is coming from. Is it really your child? Or even your ex? Is it financial, are you tired, stressed, otherwise upset? Get a perspective on why you are angry right now and what you need right now.
*Clinch your jaw and count to 10, relax your jaw….do it again…and again if you need.
*Phone a friend who will listen.
*Hug a pillow, or the listening friend.
*Take a hot shower or bath, with music and candles?
*Turn on your favorite music and move to it.
Some of this message is to encourage you to take care of yourself so that you are not at your “wit’s end.” Get all the professional help and advice you can. Work with teachers, friends, family, and especially your ex-partner. Working together on parenting issues will make life better for both households.
Copyright 2011. All material contained herein is owned and protected. Any attempts to reproduce this information without the express written consent from the owner will be prosecuted.
Congratulations, you are finished with the 32nd lesson on domestic violence and co-parenting.
When you complete the four questions for Lesson 32 Quiz you will be automatically given Lesson 33.
LESSON Thirty-two QUIZ