Tuesday Topic: Spanking — and a Winner!


Russ is out of town for work and it has been snowing like crazy, once again making life a little bit more complicated.  Fortunately the guys have been able to get in out and of our driveway without needing to plow. With more snow predicted, we’re thankful that Russ will be home very soon.  I am particularly proud of Ladybug who went out in the crazy, blowing snow to feed the cows.  She is amazing!

I am happy to announce the winner of last week’s giveaway of the Empowering, Connecting & Correcting Principles DVD from Empowered to Connect and Dr. Karyn Purvis. Rusty went through each comment figuring out how many “chances” each person got and then used a random number generator to select the winner — and the winner is:

Rachael who writes the blog Strength Will Rise!

Rachael, email me with your address at lisa@onethankfulmom.com and I will get the DVD in the mail to you.

Thank you to everyone who entered.  I will be announcing the winner of the Rockin’ Mama Challenge giveaway very soon, so keep watching!  Last but not least, I have another giveaway coming up within the week for a gift certificate.

On to our Tuesday Topic.  This week’s question is:

… my husband and I are in the process of adopting three kids (2 year old boy, 6 & 7 year old girls). We also have a 21 month old son we adopted at birth domestically.  I have a question I’m wondering if you (or your readers) can help answer.

We have read “The Connected Child” and plan to implement as much of it as we can.  We currently use spanking to discipline our 21 month-old, when needed.  We do not plan to use spanking for our kids adopted from Africa. How do we continue to use spanking with our 21-month old, while not using it with our other kids?

I’m sure there will be many opinions about how to correct and discipline children, but I think we can have a good discussion on this topic.

Please leave your thoughts as a comment.  If you prefer to comment anonymously, that is fine as well.  Thank you for being such great readers and supporting one another on this remarkable journey.

Encourage one another,

Lisa

This post may contain Amazon Affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Let me introduce myself. Russ and I are the parents of twelve children by birth and adoption, and sometimes more through foster care. I'm the creator of One Thankful Mom which has been as much of a gift to me as to my readers. In 2011 I became a TBRI® Pracitioner* and have lived and breathed connected parenting ever since. I'm deeply honored to be the co-author, together with the late Dr. Karyn Purvis, of The Connected Parent; it is her final written work. I love speaking at events for adoptive and foster parents. I'm also the co-founder of The Adoption Connection, a podcast and resource site for adoptive moms. I mentor and encourage adoptive moms so you can find courage and hope in your journeys of loving your children well.

34 Comments

  1. Anne donohue
    February 22, 2011

    I have a feeling this will be a lively conversation.we have an adopted son fro Korea that we adopted at 6 months,and have just adopted a 2 1/2 year old from china.we signed a form with our agency,catholic charities that we would not use spanking as an option for discipline.I thought all agencies had that policy.I can see there wisdom now.we have 2 biological kids that we did spank very sparingly.I know I woUld not spank my new daughter with her complex background.it would cause so much damage.I am sure she would move backward in her bonding process.I think you wil find a new method that keeps all your children feeling safe and loved while moving them towards living in a disciplined manner.

    Reply
  2. Jen
    February 22, 2011

    My questions back to you would be:

    Why do you not plan on spanking your children from Africa? and, why do you spank your bio. child?

    The reason I ask this is that I think it may help you to clarify some of what lies beneath the “to spank or not to spank” debate.

    Do you believe that the Bible is the ultimate authority? What does the Word of God say about discipline? about spanking, in particular? God’s plan, purposes, and prescrip)tives for raising, loving, disciplining children doesn’t change over time or because they are( or are not biological, are (or are not) from “hard places,” are (or are not) older, younger, etc. . .

    Now, if you believe that God’s Word lays out spanking as ONE of the many ways to discipline children, and you know exactly the why and whens of using it biblically (is it for safety? for rebellion? – again, I’m asking you to seek this out in the WORD – not in a parenting book or in a culturally relevant parenting magazine). . . then, you have to ask if you believe that God is Sovereign and Good enough to have known about “RAD” and other “issues” way back when His Word was recorded.

    We cannot think that our current psychology and science “findings” should somehow usurp the authority of the Word in any area of our lives, including our parenting.

    I do not think it is wise (my own opinion here) to spank some of your children and not others if the ONLY consideration is whether or not they are adopted. The message of “you are somehow different than our biological child” would only be strengthened in their minds (and they ARE believing lies about this – especially at first) by being treated very differently for the same offenses.

    If you DO spank, I would encourage (again, my own opinion) you to REALLY be discerning. What sometimes looks like rebellion is often just bad habits, cultural misunderstandings, or fear. However, some of the most truly rebellious behaviors can be very subtle and manipulative and hard to see. Pray for discernment in this.

    I think that you and your husband need to seek the Lord and His wisdom and be united on this. Please don’t make your decisions based on recommendations from books or other adoptive parents who may or may not be solidly grounded in the Lord (although DO seek wisdom from biblical, godly counsel).

    Spend a LOT of time at first going back to that “first year” of life phase (even with the oldest) and do a TON of rocking, holding, bottle feeding, eye contact – all of the things that answer the question “am I o.k.? will you meet my needs?” – over, and over, and over, and over. Do NOT overindulge in the American way of giving them all of the stuff and experiences they have never had – it is WAY too much sensory overload and it is overwhelming in a BAD way. DO have very tight boundaries (in the way that you would have with an infant or toddler. A 6 year old adopted child from a trauma background is NOT 6! I would GREATLY encourage you to not seek to do any type of “school” work during the first year. Keep them home with you and live the infant/toddler/preschool years with them. This is going to be a MAJOR year of change, some chaos, and learning for both you and your children. (I say this as one who has adopted large sibling groups two times now!). It is hard, but it is very good!

    I do think that one thing sorely lacking in the discussions about adopted children is the immense amount of spiritual warfare and spiritual oppression that they are under. The Spirits of rebellion, self-pity, and rejection aren’t just feelings or psychological “issues.” They in most cases are VERY much Evil spirits. The Word itself says that we don’t fight against flesh and blood but against powers, principalities, and spirits. I would encourage you not to underestimate the power of prayer, in the name of Jesus, that will free your children from living under the oppression of these deadly, destructive spirits of the enemy.

    Sorry to write a book. This is so near and dear to my heart. We have experienced MANY of our children going from traumatized, hurt, un-attached, RAD children to completely transformed and redeemed children of God who are whole and healthy or are very much on their way. It is such a wonderfully HARD (which seems to be in conflict, but isn’t!) thing to walk through. We will be praying that your new children will be healed, whole, and blessed!

    Reply
    1. Phyllis
      February 23, 2011

      Wow! That was really a great response. Lots to ponder with that one. It will be a good discussion base for my husband and I.

      Reply
      1. Jen
        February 23, 2011

        sorry for the long response! lol! I get really passionate about this since I have lived it SO intensely for the past 4 years! I would love to share more about any particular area if you are interested.

        Reply
    2. Bethany
      February 25, 2011

      And just as you will treat your children home in the first year as if they are in the 0-12 month age range (bottle feeding, rocking etc) you would never consider hitting an infant who did not yet understand this Brand New Life.

      Reply
    3. theschwarz1
      March 7, 2011

      Excellently thought out and written! I often thought about that myself. WE plan on adopting and have wondered about this issue. Thanks for your biblical insight!

      Reply
  3. Giann
    February 22, 2011

    I am sorry about the last comment!! I don't even have an answer; my iPod touch was acting up! I might as well say, though, that I LOVE the picture and am envious of the snow! 😉 Have a great week!

    Reply
  4. Margaret
    February 22, 2011

    wow. This is a challenging question, maybe partly because we don't spank our children. Our two children came to us 6 years apart. Becoming siblings has been a struggle for them, even after 2 years. I wonder what things will be like as your family reconfigures with these 3 new children. How will the child already home feel about his place in the family? The new children will notice every single difference, even things you may not think of as different, or unfair. What will they think about the differences? What will they think about their new sibling being spanked? What will it suggest to them about how the family works and their place in the new family? I don't know where your children have been living, but one of my children lived in an orphanage where children were hit. Although I think her birthfamily may have spanked her and she accepted it, since her time in the orphanage she is very sensitive about any kind of physical punishment. These are just some things to think about moving forward.
    Margaret

    Reply
  5. HMM
    February 22, 2011

    This should be a great discussion. I'm sure there will be a ton of great input. Personally, I do not judge people who use spanking as a method of discipline but I would not condone it within my own family and have never seen a need for it. For the record, I was spanked and I think I turned out wonderfully! *Big Grin!* That being said, as someone who essentially raises (helps raise) other people's children as the child's main caretaker from the time they rise to the time they go to bed (I even do the bedtime routine and stories), I have found that there are a vast amount of other ways to effectively discipline children. My initial reaction is that your parenting should be consistent with all of your children. Consistency does not necessarily mean the exact same; obviously, your children will not be exactly alike. Regardless of the detriments of spanking "in general" – I think it poses obvious risks for adopted children (many of whom have unknown & known backgrounds of abuse). Thus, as you will not be using physical discipline for your older adopted children (rightly so), I personally, would discontinue it as a method of discipline for your other child as well. As you will be forced to think of creative ways to discipline your new children, it shouldn't be any more of an effort to employ the same creativity in regards to your 21 month old. Additionally, I would imagine that your older two children would possibly witness (or at least be aware) of the spanking of your 21 month old. It is plausible that they would then fear the same discipline would logically be applied to them as well. In summary, I think consistency, equality, and creativity is key in order to build cohesiveness and trust among all members of your newly formed family.

    Hopefully that made sense! I'm looking forward to hearing others` advice!

    Reply
  6. Marie
    February 23, 2011

    Oh my! I'm so sorry that you'd even entertain a discussion about spanking children. The evidence is so strong that this is never a good option, that it is inhuman, unkind, and counter-productive and that it only teaches children about domination, submission and the power of violence…I'm truly dismayed.

    I'll be sending my prayers and good thought to that poor little 21-month-old child!

    Reply
    1. Emily
      March 1, 2011

      Marie, I totally disagree. I was spanked as a child, and I never once doubted my mother's love for me. We have a phenomenal relationship now, and I can look back and truly be thankful for her discipline because I know that it was done in love, with an eye toward my own good. It was not always convenient, it was never impulsive, but she loved me enough to teach me to discipline myself so that she didn't have to. What greater gift could a parent give?

      Spanking done in anger? Abusive and debilitating. Spanking done in love for a child's good? Truly beneficial.

      Reply
    2. theschwarz1
      March 7, 2011

      I will also have to disagree. Training is never easy, neither for the child or the parent. I was also spanked as a child and have a wonderful relationship with my parents. I believe I have been spanked wrongly in the past, but It did not ruin my life. I know my parents love me, I know they are not perfect, and neither am I.
      I have seen spanking being done wrongly, and if done that way consistently, it has great damage. If done correctly, not out of anger or frustration, it has wonderfully REDEMPTIVE results. If its done correctly, it is not needed hardly at all. That is the key.
      I would suggest you check out this message series to get an idea as to how to raise a child biblically for the best results. Maybe you'll get a better idea as to what correct training that uses spanking really is like, and not some secular idea of abuse.
      http://www.charityministries.org/listen.a5w

      I would suggest you listen to them all in order and not skip to the one about "the rod". There are very important messages and thoughts to consider before this.

      Reply
  7. Mary
    February 23, 2011

    As a foster parent, spanking is out. With our two biological kids, we have used spanking. When we were being trained and certified as foster parents, we decided to stop using spanking on our biological kids (then 3 and 18 months). It was hard for me to make the transition. I was spanked and have no ill thoughts about this discipline method. I believe it to be a biblical method for discipline (done correctly and I refer to Ted Tripp's Shepherding a Child's Heart routinely for method checks on myself). But we felt that it would be too confusing for kids and for us to be using different methods for discipline. We just tried to implement a new progression of discipline. We have only been placed with infants up to this point and there are times I have used spanking on my bio children. In all honesty though, I think the techniques we have learned and implemented based on Connected Child are WAY more effective. They just take a ton of practice and commitment on the parent's part to consistency, patience and process. Where I stand in my thoughts now is that spanking is very helpful when children are very young (and not traumatized), as in 1-2 years. But by 2, there can be many more effective ways of disciplining, I have found.

    My goal in discipline is to train my kids to think through actions, choices, and consequences. Using natural consequences as much as possible works wonders. Committing for the long haul works wonders. I found that my own personal spanking grid was more related to my NEEDING children to comply with me. And that is just terrible. I have learned that the purpose of discipline is not ease in my day, but wisdom and ease for my childrens' lives. That mental shift has moved me away from spanking and towards other modes of discipline that sometimes take a little longer but I think I see deep fruit in the results.

    But ultimately, I guess I would say that becoming a foster parent and I imagine for those who are adoptive parents too–the biggest lesson is that I do not have all the answers. That I need counsel, prayer, God's Word daily. I need life wisdom from older people, experienced people, wise people. I used to approach my methods for child-rearing as correct and did not have a good listening ear for other opinions or points of view. That has changed in a big way for me. And I have to say that all of my bio children and all of my foster kids are way happier as a result. And I am happier. We approach parenting with a bended knee and a begging heart. God supplies tremendous wisdom when we posture ourselves like this. It has been a long lesson for me and I am still in process.

    But, this is one of the best things about parenting children from "hard places." We have to change too. And that is a good, good thing.

    Best wishes bringing home your kiddos! Hard, sometimes impossible, but miraculous! What an adventure!

    Reply
    1. Jen
      February 23, 2011

      Mary,

      I think that is a very wise and biblical response. We too have found ourselves in a very similar position and I think we stand very much in the same place in parenting.

      Reply
    2. Kirstine
      February 24, 2011

      "I have learned that the purpose of discipline is not ease in my day, but wisdom and ease for my childrens' lives."
      This sentence rings so true with me!!! (Thank you) Although I can only say I am learning it…

      I read Ted Tripps book and found it hard to argue with because he refers to the Bible all the time. But I just could not identify with his methods and I had to be a parrent everyday for many many many years to come… I had to find something I would be able to do. So I read other books too. 🙂

      On the notion of using different disciplining strategies for different children: I think all parrents do this – simply because of difference in age/nature etc. But I love it when I come across disciplining strategies that I will not cringe as I see my kids use them towards others – e.g. the older sibling "disciplining" his brother.
      So maybe it would be an idea to find ways to be around eachother in a loving and respectful environment – even when someone is acting out and doesn't understand how to behave yet? Just my two cents. (My three year old repeats/'redoes' everything I say to him to those who are smaller than him. Talk about seeing yourself in a mirror!!!)

      Reply
  8. Linda
    February 23, 2011

    Great discussion! Love hearing other families' experiences!

    Reply
  9. Kathrin
    February 23, 2011

    Please do not spank your children. (Here it is against the LAW!)
    Is that how the Lord teaches us? Give you child all you have, set a good example and love them.
    Think how you would want to be taught, think about what you would do to your spouse if he/she dosen't do what you think is right – would you hit him/her.
    Spanking is not educational!

    Reply
    1. Terri
      April 25, 2013

      A couple of verses from the Lord:

      "the rod and reproof BRING WISDOM"…Proverbs 29:15

      It is educational if it brings wisdom, which it does as God says so!

      "Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far away."…Proverbs 22:15

      "Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you strike him with a rod, he will not die. If you strike him with the rod, you will save his soul from Sheol."…Proverbs 23:13-14

      *in answer to the rod only being to Shepherd and guide. (I am in no way condoning abuse, as that is NOT Gods way, however, a spanking done appropriately and not in anger, motivated by love and not revenge, does bring wisdom, remove rebellion, and saves them. (God says so).

      "Where is the wise person? Where is the teacher of the law? Where is the philosopher of THIS AGE? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world"…1 Cor. 18:-31
      * It is in THIS AGE that spanking is somehow deemed not good for the child. Biblical Spanking is a lot different than abuse, which is wrong. But the *WISE of this age are foolish in Gods eyes and so is anything they teach that is contradictory to his word

      "but the word of the Lord REMAINS forever"…1 Peter 1:25
      His word is for today, yesterday, and forever!

      Blessings

      Reply
  10. Angela
    February 23, 2011

    Wow, very interesting topic!! I loved reading the comments already & am in awe & even had a few mouth gaping moments because of comments!!
    We have spanked our children. We have 4 bio kids & they are great kids!! I personally love that one lady brought up the bible & what it teaches about correction. We follow the bible, in fact , we live by the bible. It is our guide!! What do we read about the rod?
    What we have found, is that if you are consistent when they are young, you will have children that respect you as a parent (not fear you) obey, & have happiness & security in knowing boundaries, and you will not need to spank them when they are older.
    We are in the process of adopting 2 children from ET and I know that it will be different on how we will correct them because of how they have come to our family but I love The Connected Child and I am praying that God will guide us on how to parent them.
    Every child is different & because of that the way you parent every child is different. There is NO WAY to know ahead of time how you will discipline them. I definately look forward to reading more comments & getting your take, Lisa!!

    Reply
  11. Anonymous
    February 23, 2011

    AS the old saying goes, "the same water that hardens the egg, softens the carrot." I truly believe that some children benefit from spanking while others harden their hearts and it doesn't result in the discipline that is necessary. As God gives parents wisdom for raising their children, we can trust Him to direct them in the way that is best for each particular child. Parenting is never one size fits all and there is room for lots of grace in this area. It is true that some adopted children definitely fall into the category that will not benefit from this type of discipline, I don't think it's wise to rule it out completely for every single adopted child.

    Reply
  12. One Thankful Mom
    February 23, 2011

    I do not consider myself an expert on this, but I can say in our experience, our children’s histories necessitate unique approaches to parenting, including discipline. Methods that worked with our children we have had since birth, did not have any corrective value for our children from “hard places.”

    In my opinion, the methods of correction we use now are much more time-consuming and challenging for us, but they are producing sweet results in our children. As for the children being confused by our approaches, there have been issues at times, but for the most part, they understand that “different kids need different things at different times.” The days of “one-size-fits-all” discipline are long gone for us.

    I should also add that Russ and I are continually striving to find creative and productive ways to train and correct our children, sometimes with more success than others. When we hit upon something that works, we are always thankful.

    Reply
  13. Mamatoalmost3
    February 24, 2011

    Interesting that no one has brought up the fact that the word used for "rod" in Proverbs 13:24 is shebet and is most often used in the scripture to refer to a shepherd's staff, walking stick, or ruler's scepter, which is usually large and thick. So applying the Biblical principle of guiding and disciplining as a shepherd leads sheep- or how our heavenly Father leads us and gently disciplines us would be a more accurate interpretation that the actual act of spanking. I am finding The Connected Child to be so rich in ideas to try with our bio boys as well as prepare for our child coming home through adoption, and also recommend the book 'Loving Your Kids On Purpose' for parenting through heart connection. (I don't agree with 100% of it, but the hear of it is so good!)

    Reply
  14. anonymous
    February 24, 2011

    We were talking with our counselor about discipline methods we can use for our adopted son vs. what we have used for our bio daughter. He told us that often spanking doesn't work in adopted children because the point of the swat is to show the child there is a broken relationship. If the child doesn't really have a relationship/connection with you yet, it is going to be meaningless (at the very least) and harmful (at the most, for children coming from abusive situations).

    Reply
    1. Guest
      February 25, 2011

      Yes! "Broken relationship" is the best terminology I have come across. Thank you for this phrase. I was hit as a child and I never felt a connection with my parents because I felt constantly disrespected and therefore did not respect them in return.

      Reply
    2. Emily
      March 1, 2011

      That is a perfect way to describe it. So very insightful!

      Reply
  15. Kayla
    February 24, 2011

    So many good things that were already said. Love what someone said about the carrot and egg. Adopted or not, for some kids spanking work. Adopted or not, for some kids, spankings really seem to have little affect. Also love what was said about not parenting based on popular culture/psychology. IIn a lot of ways, I've found myself almost needing a mission statement on discipine, something to anchor to because it can be so easy to drift off into 'wow! that method looks great!" I also really liked what someone said about age. It seems to me that spanking should drastically diminish as a child gets older.

    Reply
  16. Kayla
    February 24, 2011

    We also parent from the perspective that disobedience is a heart issue. That disobedience hurts our hearts and that a spanking is a way to concretely show the hurt in our hearts. In our situation, a spanking comes after continued, willful disobedience. And we are not spanking out of anger but out of that belief that we need to show our little ones who aren't able to think abstractly or process more abstract consequences. We use a variety of other discipline methods. And hopefully as your child age, they are more able to understand how their actions are connected to the state of their hearts. It's also important to remember that the chronological age of your adopted children are not the same as their emotional, socal, and family age. The last bit, a family age, is my own wording for saying that your children will come to you at zero years old in terms of family living, specifically living with your family. So in some ways, you need to view them as a newborn. What do you expect of a newborn and how would you correct a newborn?

    Reply
  17. Kayla
    February 24, 2011

    But none of that really addresses the original question which centered around using one method of discipline with one child and one with another. I think the real issue is that it is a bit situational. I have two children who are both 4, who came home at 2 and 3. Yes, they spent 2+ years in a country where physical punishment is tolerated at a much higher level than in the States. But they were babies for a good portion of that time so their experiences are completely different than what an older child's might be. As I stated before, we spank. Not often but we do spank. I guess what I'm saying is that if you are a family who has disciplined with spanking before that you may decide to use that with your 2 year old and 21 month old but not with your older two. I think continuing to spank your 21 month old but not your 2 year old would be very hard. I think there's enough difference between the older kids and the little kids, that there wouldn't be as much friction over one discipline plan for the older kids and one for the little kids.

    Reply
  18. Kayla
    February 24, 2011

    We obviously did not bring our kids home and start using that method of discipline. We used time outs and time ins a lot. But at some point, when we felt like our child was beginning to settle in and show that they were attaching, we did incorporate spanking into the plan. Not multiple spankings and not in anger but with the words "when you disobey it hurts your heart like a spanking hurts your bottom." We followed with reconciliation and love. And "even if you disobey, I will still love you." Both of my kids have done well in transitioning and attachment. (At least up to this point.) But again, it's situational. Are there kids who would not do well with that? Probably. Anyway, just my two cents worth, albeit a LONG two cents worth, more like a buck.

    Reply
  19. Jessica Rudder
    February 24, 2011

    When I was younger, my parents petitioned (and received) legal custody of an abused neighborhood kid.

    They were his legal guardians so, technically, they could have used spanking as a discipline method, but, due to the severe beatings he had received on a fairly regular basis from male relatives, it was doubtful that a spanking would have had any positive results.

    Logically, my siblings and I understood why we were occasionally spanked but our big brother never was (even if we were in trouble for the same thing). However, there were times where emotionally it didn't make sense to us and we felt like he was getting special treatment or we had received a harsher punishment for the same wrong.

    Don't get me wrong – none of us grew up hating or resenting our parents or our big brother. We all finished college, 2 out of 3 are happily married, etc etc. I don't think the punishment disparity emotionally damaged any of us and we remain a very close family.

    I would just caution that using different punishments can cause some additional emotional pain that perhaps wasn't intended. If similar styles of discipline will work on all the kids, then, it might be a better idea to give up the spanking. If that's not an option for you, the good news is that at least in my case, spanking bios but not the other kids did not have any long term ill effects.

    Reply
  20. Positively Orphaned
    February 25, 2011

    Let the children come to me and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the Kingdom of God.
    -Luke 18:16.

    Anyone who welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. But anyone who is an obstacle to bring down one of these little ones, who has faith in me would be better drowned in the depths of the sea with a great milstone round his neck.
    -Matt. 18:5-7

    Christians for Nonviolent Parenting http://www.nospank.net/cnpindex.htm has many quotes from the Bible. I personally cannot picture Jesus bringing physical harm to a child.

    Reply
  21. Amy
    February 26, 2011

    Different things for different kids at different times is a motto at our house (as others have said on here). But I don’t think it can go so far to spanking one out of four kids. And honestly, if you don’t pull spanking, flicking, (insert any other physical punishment here) you probably will not grow in disciplining your children other ways because those will be with what you are familiar and comfortable. At least that is how it was for us.

    I have to admit we had difficulty taking spanking off the table as a disciplinary tool. After working at it, we have been mostly successful in implementing other strategies. In our personal experience we have found using Karyn Purvis' techniques have worked better to change behavior with our rebellious 3 year old.
    Our SOP works like this. We ask in a kind (often playful) way for the desired positive behavior.
    We take a breath and count to 5 (in our heads) to give ourselves a moment to calm down and redirect our frustration at the behavior (not the child) and MORE IMPORTANTLY to give them a chance to use their brains (which at best are working in a frustrated mode, so it takes a bit of effort to make a good choice).
    If our kids comply we try to praise the good choice A LOT.
    If they don’t make a good choice we lower our voice, slow down the speed, and use short commands such as “listen and obey", “no hurting” and "use respect".
    We breathe and count to 5 again.
    For some things (like hitting, biting, etc.) we go straight to the “DON’T HURT” said slow and low.
    Then there are the consequences, which we feel are necessary as a negative side effect of poor choices. For example, thrown toys get taken away (usually for the day). We put it where they can see it but may not play with it. Hitting and other physical misbehavior (and spitting) get the time-out chair (we do stay in the room). We require a time limit (a minute/year) and a sincere apology before they can get out. We also do a lot of RE-DOs (usually after a consequence). Then they practice the better choice between 5 and 10 times.

    Reply
  22. Claire
    March 7, 2011

    Thank you to "Mamatoalmost3" for your post. I was reading down the comments and also wondering how nobody had mentioned this. I'm so glad to see your post. I think spanking is one of those cultural things that has somehow gotten pinned on the Bible. There are so many other ways to discipline/disciple a child that really reflect the patience and unwavering love God has for us, and truthfully they may take more time and thought, but are so worth it in the long run. Before I learned of other ways to discipline and that spanking isn't actually Biblical I also assumed I would have to spank my kids at times. But since you'll be learning so many new ways to handle things anyway, why not extend those to your 21 month old as well?

    Reply
  23. theschwarz1
    March 7, 2011

    Folks, please listen to these messages in order to get a good understanding about raising a godly home: http://www.charityministries.org/listen.a5w

    I urge you to listen to them in order and not to skip to the one about "The Rod". There are many things to consider before. This will give a good picture of what training up a child biblically looks like and not the idea that the secular world would have you believe!!

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