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Old 09-15-2014, 09:53 PM
326 posts, read 571,306 times
Reputation: 387


Originally Posted by Hedgehog_Mom View Post
Most kids that age will do as much as they can get away with. I doubt that your parenting skills are that bad, I think you are insecure about them. You're raising your son, putting a roof over his head, and you managed to graduate, so you're doing better than a lot of people.

Probably the most challenging thing to do with a four year old is to be calm and firm when he's acting up. Don't lose your temper, don't yell at him, don't threaten him with things you can't follow through with. Just explain why he has to do what you say. If he cries about it, send him to his room for five minutes.

Give him things to do to help around the house, nothing major but little things he can do to help him feel like part of the team.

I remember a talk I had with my oldest when she was around four. I can't remember what led up to it, but I told her, "I have to take care of you because that's my job as a mom, and I have to love you, but right now I don't like you at all because you keep making me sad." The idea that I actually had feelings was new to her, and the idea that I could not like her because of what she was doing. It's a useful concept for them.
You told your four year old you "have to love her"? Gosh, I would feel awful at any age if my mom told me that.
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Old 09-15-2014, 09:55 PM
Location: Texas
42,203 posts, read 49,740,662 times
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This highlights the problem of children raising children.

This probably won' end well for the kid, who needs discipline and boundaries to both feel secure and thrive.

Last edited by Jaded; 09-16-2014 at 06:28 PM..
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Old 09-15-2014, 10:06 PM
32,538 posts, read 29,319,241 times
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Originally Posted by CranberryLightfan View Post
I suppose I keep them low so I can get them with ease so I don't have to open a cupboard every time I want a cookie.

Oh. Spine issues. Got it. Can't say no to a 4-year old. Can't open a cupboard door to get to the Oreos.

Last edited by DewDropInn; 09-15-2014 at 10:19 PM..
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Old 09-15-2014, 10:21 PM
Location: Whidbey Island, WA
11,970 posts, read 10,760,301 times
Reputation: 5856
To the OP I think the Cowgirls post is your new best friend. Kids need boundaries. Learn how and be successful.
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Old 09-15-2014, 10:24 PM
326 posts, read 571,306 times
Reputation: 387
I highly suggest checking out Peaceful Parenting and Positive Parenting, both groups are on Facebook. It's where we first learned about it. Dr. Momma Org is another. We used to the do the non-angry spank and it worked like a charm on our oldest in just a few times. On our second, it did nothing. He is our wild child. Once we started learning positive methods of parenting (note, NOT permissive), we saw positive changes in him. We reward the good behavior. They still have boundaries, are told no when appropriate, are expected to have good manners, do well in school, etc.

If your son is getting into things he shouldn't, you have control over that. Put those things out of reach or don't buy them. Saying you lack the parenting skills is a cop out. Our children don't come with manuals. Yes, you may have lacked life experience which can be affecting your parenting, but this is why children (and as a teen you are still a kid) should not be taking part in adult activities they are not ready for the consequences of. The fact that you were lucky and got a child out of your choices vs. a deadly disease is a blessing.

You SHOULD move in with your parents because your sister is a horrible influence and is making things worse. Your parents can help you become a better parent God willing.

Just as an example, I would get some gogurt and freeze it. When it comes to bedtime, if he tries to find the oreos which you have now hidden , I would tell him that it's bedtime and oreos are not to be eaten at bedtime. He may choose to have a frozen gogurt instead. He still feels like he's getting something, but you are controlling what that something is and that it's a healthier choice.
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Old 09-16-2014, 06:53 AM
Location: Wisconsin
16,468 posts, read 15,905,878 times
Reputation: 38730
Originally Posted by R_Cowgirl View Post
There's bound to be some young parent out there with this issue, so rather than second guess, here's some good advice. Log on to John Rosemond's website: John Rosemond

John's books saved me when I suddenly had 4 young stepkids in my life. I credit his wise advice for keeping me sane and centered. My children thank me to this day, and have vowed to raise their kids with his books as well. As he says, "Parenting is not a popularity contest." It's not important that your kids like you. It's important that they respect you and know who the adult is in the relationship. A 4 year old is not wise enough in the ways and dangers of the world to be making ANY decisions about their life or their day-to-day activities.

Allowing a child to make adult decisions is asking for a nightmare in about 8 years. His teen years will be marked with pain and suffering for both of you. Without discipline, he will be an easier mark for drug abuse and other nasty things that happen to kids in their teens. As far as I'm concerned, NOT disciplining your children is the same as child abuse. You might not be abusing them in your mind, but you are not preparing them for the real world, where they will be punished over and over and over for thinking they are the center of the universe.

I'm not speaking from theory. I have raised a lot of step kids and foster kids. So I have the benefit of seeing the results decades later of good and bad parenting decisions. I recently went to the wedding of a girl I knew from childhood who grew up in a single parent home. The little girl is now 30 and a royal PIA. She was a pain as a teenager and was bridezilla at her wedding. Her father never ever ever made her do anything. He even allowed her at age 5 to decide which days she would go to school and which days she would stay home. She got a paid for high-end car on her 16th birthday. Wrecked it. Got another one. Wrecked it. Ran up his credit cards for long trips and expensive gifts for friends. Her main facial expression is a pout. She has lost three jobs and her father just keeps picking up the slack because 'he feels bad' for her. He has never taken the position of a parent and both of them have suffered for it.

If you do this to your kid, you will destroy him. Loving discipline is the best gift any parent can give their children. "No" means "No.' "I hate you," should be met with, "Well, I love you." "You can't boss me around!" Should be met with, "Actually, yes I can. And for that, you are going to your room." The bedroom should have no TV and no computer.

I AM an advocate of the occasional spanking if it is warranted and YOU are not angry at the time. "Hitting" them is not the answer. However, an occasional swat across the fatty part of their butt with a wide open hand, ONE TIME, may be called for. A Spanking is never done in anger and is only done if they are so out of control you can't get their attention. Never spank anywhere but a thickly diapered bottom, or on the fatty part of their rear end. Never spank more than one time. (I KNOW this advice will get some politically correct people all up in a twist. But if you've never had a wild child, you simply don't get it. I'm not advocating hitting. I'm advocating waking them up before they really hurt themselves. And BTW - as one who used to preach against the one-time swat on the butt -- let me assure you, the louder you protest me, the higher the likelihood you will get one of these wild children and then you will understand..... )

I had a child in my care who would scream at the top of her lungs until she almost passed out. She was the original drama queen. She would occasionally start hitting her head on the wall or whatever surface was available. I would try all the other things first - stern talking to, ignoring, sending her to time out. She once kicked me so hard it knocked the air out of me. I turned, took a deep breath to calm myself, then swatted her one time on her butt with an open palm. She stopped abruptly mid-scream and looked at me in shock. I said, "Time out. One hour. No TV three days." Then I pointed to her room. She went! No one had ever challenged her before. I only had two more of those temper tantrums after that. Then she settled down, at least around me. That was 20 years ago. She still remembers it and laughs. She once told me she wouldn't be where she is now if I hadn't cared enough to hang in with her. All discipline needs to come from love and from being the adult. No bullying. No tyrant behavior. No anger. Just love and enough strength to love them when they don't love themselves.

If you don't think you can do it, and you aren't willing to take classes and turn into a grownup, consider giving your son up for adoption. He deserves more than to live in a frat house environment that prepares him for nothing but a life of pain.

OK, that's enough.
If you ARE a troll, go do something else.
For those who saw the thread and are really suffering from the weak-parenting-malady, I hope this helps.
Great advice. Sometimes the best gift that a parent can give their biological child is to allow them to grow up in a loving home with responsible parents.

Last edited by Jaded; 09-16-2014 at 06:31 PM..
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Old 09-16-2014, 08:37 AM
Location: Long Island, NY
7,846 posts, read 10,248,493 times
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Actually, I do believe it. I know someone with 2 out of control kids. The parents would rather have cocktails instead of watching their kids climb on people's furniture and they let their kids do whatever they want so the demons don't have a hissy fit. Those are 2 kids I do not like and whenever they're at a family function, I stay clear of them.

Last edited by Jaded; 09-16-2014 at 06:29 PM..
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Old 09-16-2014, 11:17 AM
1,469 posts, read 1,385,596 times
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Originally Posted by isis297 View Post
You told your four year old you "have to love her"? Gosh, I would feel awful at any age if my mom told me that.
My mom always told us., "I'm your mother; I have to love you but I don't have to like you".

Last edited by charmed hour; 09-16-2014 at 12:12 PM..
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Old 09-16-2014, 02:20 PM
Location: Colorado
9,734 posts, read 6,265,376 times
Reputation: 17549
Hm. My mother was an overindulged child. Never learned to make good decisions and grew up thinking that other people needed to take care of her. In her 50's now, and so deep in the hole of terrible life choices she will never be able to climb out. Her parents are dying now, she just lost her Mom and her Dad is on his way...and no one will be left to take care of her. I'm not doing it. I have my own kids to raise and if she comes anywhere near us, my husband can't stand her and they can't coexist...I will choose the family I created. Her issues are too big for me.

Fast forward to her trying to raise ME. Although I think I turned out OK in the end, it was no thanks to her, she parented as though she was my "best friend" and making me unhappy or losing my good opinion was more important that doing Mom things. I was a stonger person than her, always was and always will be...as a kid, that means I got my way. As a teen it means I was skipping school, doing drugs, and very VERY sexually active from age 13-18. Pregnancy at age 19 woke me up and grew me up, FAST. Luckily I had some other role models and when I applied my inner strength to good purposes I went far in life.

Ah, but you have a son.

So. What happens when we raise an entitled boy child? Hm?

I personally saw the brother of a friend, a 16 year old male, beat his mother almost senseless once. You do realize that by about age 13-14 he'll be bigger than you, right? I'm serious. And you're doing nothing good for his opinion of women as he grows up if you give him zero boundaries. He's already got no male role model to show him how to act, it's on you...and you're teaching him that he has a right to TAKE anything he wants from the females in his life right now. Today it's a cookie. Tomorrow things are gonna get real ugly if you don't start laying down the law. And until he turns 18, unless you give someone else custody of him, he is going to be your problem. The consequences of his actions will be on your head. Regular kids with boundaries present enough difficulties, let alone when you don't enforce any...and it has to start now. Better if it had started a couple years ago, but it's not too late.

I spanked my kids, when they were little, because sometimes it's the only way to put a stop to the power plays. You do not need to be your kid's friend. You need to be his Mom. Someone who said never to spank in anger, or HIT a child is correct. We are talking swats on the rear, with a cool head, no shrieking and no anger. Be in control of yourself and your kid. Don't just let things go until you can't take it anymore and then lash out. Eventually it will come to the point where you will look at him and ask, "Do you need a spanking?" and he'll immediately stop what he's doing and say "no..." but he's got to know you'll do it.

Kudos to your for graduating school. Now it's time to grow up. Good luck.
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Old 09-16-2014, 02:53 PM
Location: Denver, Colorado U.S.A.
14,174 posts, read 22,492,358 times
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Discipline should have started at age 2, at least. By the time our twin boys were 4, things were getting easier. They've had routines and consequences for negative behavior. We've never had "bedtime issues" and now at age 6, they're well-behaved (for 6 year olds). I remember the "terrible twos" when one of them would have huge tantrums. I remember having to physically pick him up and put him in his bed and staying by the door to make sure he didn't run out of his room during time out. It was miserable and tough to do, but by age 4, that type of thing no longer happened. Today's punishments are typically loss of privileges, but even that is a rarity now.

If you don't take control NOW, you'll have a huge mess on your hands and a child that's unable to function in society who will highly likely cost the taxpayers a lot in social services or who knows, jail time? My brother in law was raised like that (no rules) and he's a 26 year old loser with no diploma, unable to work, addicted to pot, and overall a useless person.

Obviously not every person raise with no discipline turns out a mess (see post just above), but it's a big risk.
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