Yep, that’s right I said it, let the bashing ensue. If you can get passed the fact that yes, at one time we thought spanking was the way to go and since then we’ve opened our eyes to a much calmer, gentle way of life then comment away. I don’t mind disagreement, or intelligent remarks, however the bashing will be deleted, i don’t have time for it, and as i said, this is something that although not how i wish it happened, I’m glad did as we found a whole new way of life.
Now… Let’s jump back a few months, to January, to be exact. Normal day at the Collins’ residence. Emilee was playing, i was deadly pregnant and miserable, and had a very short temper. My husband was dealing with the wicked pregnant lady from the couch. We sat watching Emilee run around and then she did it, she knows that the fire place is not a safe place to play. That it is HOT and that it can hurt her, for this we popped her on the booty if she sat on it, on her hand if she touched it, you get the picture…
Well this day she decided to sit on it, and when Alan told her to get up, she started laughing and stood up on it, then sat, then stood and made a game out of what she was showing she knew not to do. He got up and went to pop her, he was aiming for her diaper and since it had 10 lbs of cushion he pops her a little harder on the diaper than he would on bare skin. Somewhere in this process he bends down she stands up and he catches not her diaper, but her thigh. She immediately cries, but it’s not the cry of “I’m in trouble grr” it’s the cry of OUCH! His eyes are big as golf balls and he looks horrified. “I missed, i got her leg”
She runs at me, arms spread crying and i see her leg, it’s red. We both are almost in tears at feeling so horrible, how is this teaching her anything other than to cause harm when harmed. How is this teaching her to not hit, when she gets popped. It all clicks in my mind in an instant, as i hold my upset little girl with a small red mark on her leg. We feel horrible, and Alan feels even worse, but it clicks, for us both. We don’t want to be those parents. The ones that are scared of a raised hand, the ones that have to use violence to control their children. We want to be those parents that can talk, sit and listen with their children. So we vow from that day forward we won’t spank her, pop her or physically punish her anymore. But what do we do? We have to do something, as she is a reluctant, strong willed child, not bad, or good, not easy or hard, just strong willed. She must stick her hand in the fire to see that it’s hot, so to speak.
We decide on an improvised version of time out. We sit her down in a big chair in our living room, and Alan or I sit with her until she’s calm. We don’t plug her in the corner and walk off, we simply sit down with her, and we sit until she’s calm. We then give big hugs, talk about what happened and kisses and giggles later she’s not doing what she isn’t supposed to. But, that wasn’t the best change.. That happened about a week after we had stopped popping her.
She was a new person, she rarely had a tantrum, which was outrageous, as she was a queen of a tantrum. Her personality calmed, she was easier to get to calm down in a stressful situation, and most of all she was smiley and lovey all over again, as that was slowly disappearing. Her bedtimes become fun, not fights. Dinners became exploring new food and family, instead of fighting to get her to eat and not throw her food, and she was sweet, like a giant teddy bear.
So, yes i wish we didn’t have to learn this way, but I’m glad we learned, as now we have a beautiful, happy and pain-free little girl who will cuddle you to death instead of bite, hit or scream.