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Old 06-13-2011, 12:12 PM
 
304 posts, read 764,736 times
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Hello all!

Just a bit of fun with our 8-year-old who can't seem to stop her impulses.

Latest was a candy from the doctor's office. She gets one reward and asked if she could have chips. I said yes. Unfortunately, she had seen Whoppers and REALLY wanted those. Instead of asking, she hid them in her hand while carrying the chips.

Obviously, this is just the latest example.

We use a system of credits and rewards, so she's penalized when she does this kind of thing, but not sure what else might 'get through' to her that this is not right.

We happened to be on the way to the courthouse when we discovered this situation. After concluding our business, we popped into the sheriff's office. The undersheriff sat her down and explained jail life to her. Wearing orange jumpsuits, no privacy on the toilet, and bologna sandwiches 2x day had some impact on her!

We'll see, but I thought I would ask if anyone else had an 'A-ha' moment with their child that got them out of this phase!
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Old 06-13-2011, 12:25 PM
 
Location: here
24,472 posts, read 28,756,384 times
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I'm not sure I'd classify taking an extra treat from the doctor's office as "stealing." That just sounds like sneaking an extra piece of free candy. Am I understanding right? What else has she stolen? Is this from stores or from other people's houses? I think I'd make her return the item and apologize, at least.
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Old 06-13-2011, 12:36 PM
 
304 posts, read 764,736 times
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It's typically little things that she thinks we would not let her have.

So far nothing from a store or someone else's home, but that would be next.

There are two problems we see:

1. She won't ask if she can have something. She decides we'll say no and gives herself permission to take it because she wants it.

2. She doesn't stop to ask herself if what she's planning is a good idea.

Her older sister went through this phase but it was never this serious or prolonged.

I'm sure she'll pull through it, as I said we work with credits and rewards and this will impact the rewards she can 'buy,' I just thought it would be interesting to see what other parents have done!

Thanks!
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Old 06-13-2011, 12:36 PM
 
43,012 posts, read 89,033,856 times
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I agree with rkb. What you described isn't stealing. The candy is there for the children to take. There's not a big sign saying only take one. You're the one she was sneaking. Either you said she could only have one or she knew that you would only allow one.

I'd also like to know what else she has stolen. Is it usually food related? My girlfiend's son became a junk food horder (he'd steal it from home, stores, friend's houses and stockpile it in his room) because she overly restricted what he could eat. When he got older, his stealing progressed to literally stealing wrapped Christmas gifts from under Christmas trees at friend's houses. My friend never accepted that her strictness actually caused his behavior.

I wouldn't call this a phase. My children never did what you describe.

Last edited by Hopes; 06-13-2011 at 12:45 PM..
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Old 06-13-2011, 12:41 PM
 
43,012 posts, read 89,033,856 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DogLover99 View Post
1. She won't ask if she can have something. She decides we'll say no and gives herself permission to take it because she wants it.
Like WHAT? WHAT is she taking? WHAT would she need to ask permission to have?

I can't imagine anything my children would have needed to ask permission to have from our house when they were only 8 years old.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DogLover99 View Post
I'm sure she'll pull through it, as I said we work with credits and rewards and this will impact the rewards she can 'buy,' I just thought it would be interesting to see what other parents have done!
What type of rewards do they get to buy?
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Old 06-13-2011, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Western Washington
8,004 posts, read 9,671,359 times
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I think you've made it pretty clear that this is just ONE small incident in the progression of many. If this is the case, then you're right, it is stealing. My youngest started to pull that kind of thing when he was younger, but honestly, I don't think he realized how he made people feel when he did it. Here's what broke him of his little habit. We tried the lectures, the "normal consequences", etc., nothing was working! Finally, I took one of his fishing poles that he'd left in the unlocked back shed. I hid it....GOOD!....and let him think someone stole it for a few days. OMG....my kid lives and breathes to fish...his gear means EVERYTHING to him...has since he was about 3 years old. We had a good long talk about how it FEELS to have something stolen from him.

Then, about a year later, someone stole his phone from his backpack at school. Oh man....not only did we have to go through a whole bunch of crap, report it stolen, deal with the phone company erasing a crapload of stuff from our bill (over $200), but he didn't have a phone for a few months. I know....right....but still, he was SICK over being "stolen" from. My dear son does NOT steal ANYTHING anymore. He quit taking things after the fishing pole was "stolen", but it concreted the feeling in his heart. Yeah, his pole did eventually "turn up", but he never forgot that feeling.

I also explained the "karma" business to him when that phone got stolen. Do not steal or things will be stolen from you and it STINKS...it HURTS...and seriously affects you...steals your sense of security! :-)
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:16 PM
 
32,538 posts, read 29,351,992 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DogLover99 View Post
Bit of fun with our 8-year-old who can't seem to stop her impulses.
There's a BIG difference between being a thief (stealing) and controlling your impulses.

I suspect you are really worried about her impulsiveness. I also suspect she is very different from you. Any other power struggles between the two of you?

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think this is about an 8-year old taking an extra piece of candy.
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:43 PM
 
12,922 posts, read 19,809,103 times
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I can't get over the idea that in this day and age a doctor's office gives out chips and candy! What about stickers?

To the OP, I would stop saying "no". Try saying yes to the candy your daughter expects you to reject. I think you went way over the top asking an undersheriff to talk to her about jail. Really? This seems like nothing more than a control issue, not a stealing problem.
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:49 PM
 
Location: here
24,472 posts, read 28,756,384 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mattie View Post
I can't get over the idea that in this day and age a doctor's office gives out chips and candy! What about stickers?

To the OP, I would stop saying "no". Try saying yes to the candy your daughter expects you to reject. I think you went way over the top asking an undersheriff to talk to her about jail. Really? This seems like nothing more than a control issue, not a stealing problem.
I was thinking the same thing!
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:52 PM
 
Location: here
24,472 posts, read 28,756,384 times
Reputation: 31056
Quote:
Originally Posted by DogLover99 View Post
It's typically little things that she thinks we would not let her have.

So far nothing from a store or someone else's home, but that would be next.

There are two problems we see:

1. She won't ask if she can have something. She decides we'll say no and gives herself permission to take it because she wants it.

2. She doesn't stop to ask herself if what she's planning is a good idea.

Her older sister went through this phase but it was never this serious or prolonged.

I'm sure she'll pull through it, as I said we work with credits and rewards and this will impact the rewards she can 'buy,' I just thought it would be interesting to see what other parents have done!

Thanks!
1) like what? What is she taking and from whom? If not from other people's houses or stores, I don't really think it is "stealing."
2) what kid does?
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