Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Not everything that's good is easy...

I have not been practicing truley mindful guidance/discipline with my children for quite some time. My husband has taken on the role of disciplinarian and I gladly let him have it. Now with him overseas I have had to take on that role and own it. And it has been hard.

I have a temper. And I have too much work to do anyway... Which makes dealing with an explosive child very hard for me. I told DH and decided in my own mind that I was not going to spank. DH does (a literal slap on the hand which seems to be an Egyptian thing), and so have I because this is what the consequences are in our home... So this is a departure for us. I am reserving spanking for the rare instance where the child is putting himself in harms way... Which has not happened since the 20th of April when DH departed. And I am now trying to have the punishment fit the crime (so to speak). Make a mess, clean it up. Take advantage of a freedom (playing outside for example) lose it.

What has surprised me is that staying calm and limiting discipline to taking away toys or privileges has been hard for me. It seems like the more I bottle up the yelling the more angry I am. Also, I think I was satisfied by the immediacy of the slap on the hand in a way. It was easier than following through on things that happen later such as no TV time, or no dessert... And what is different about delayed consequences for me is that I have a second explosion to deal with when they are enforced.

I know my kids are old enough to understand consequences. They are 5, 6, and 8 now... And of course the 2yo is out of the equation. I know that this is the better way... It also seems to be the harder way. Much harder.

One thing I did about a month before DH left was a schedule. We have set times to do things. Breakfast, lunch, nap time for the baby, play outside/free play, dinner, bath times boys and girls on alternating days, and then reading and workbooks before bed. It made a huge difference. And I have been hiring for things that need to be done for DH's business that will take me out of my schedule. What does this have to do with discipline you ask? Well, I find that anticipating blow-ups and not just letting the kids run randomly from one thing to the next helps me AVOID having to discipline.

Doing the right thing isn't always easy. And it isn't always what you WANT to do. I would love to spank someones behind and send them to bed when they trash the room they are supposed to be playing in... But now I calmly tell them they will have to clean it up before the timer goes off or they will be missing dessert or TV time that evening. Allah be with me... I am trying!LOL

Read Giving Your Child the Gift of Inner Discipline...I know I'm reading it AGAIN!


Anonymous said...

Have you ever heard of the book Unconditional Parenting by Alfie Khon? Its one of my favs on parenting.

Anyhoot, Sis, I tagged you on my blog What are 10 things you're hopeful for? I'm thinking DH's return might be one!!

I have to hand it to you though. You're doing a much better job then I did when my DH was gone for a week *yeah just a week*. I thought I was going to loose it. lol I needed a break from the baby and I felt sooo lonely!

Miss A said...

Asalaam alaikum sis,

It's hard on you now, but in the long run you will benefit so much from what you are doing. My parents have learned the hard way with my 14yo brother. He was like an only child and they didn't give him much discipline. He's sassy to them now. It's much harder when they get older and you are building a good foundation for that.

Anonymous said...

I have such a hard time in this area. I have a temper and sometimes it gets the best of me. In our culture it's the norm to spank children as a method but it's not always the best method. Like you said it should fit the "crime" and spanking isn't always the best fit.

I am trying to take things away and punish that way rather then spanking. Leaving the spanking for more larger issues. I think when you spank for every little thing they start to get use to it. That's what happened to me. I adapted and just expected it as a young child.

Being a parent is the toughest job in the world and it will never run perfectly as one would expect.

Anonymous said...

as salamualykum check out for pointers on disicpline and also
some helpful things. i also tend to lose my temper, but like you said if things are sturctured we tend to have less problems.
May Allaah swt helps us all be good shepards.
as salamualikum

Anonymous said...

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