Tag: shopping with kids

Empty Threats Make Weak Parents

A father had no less than a gaggle of children in the grocery store…

little girl in supermarketGranted it was a Saturday, granted they were in the toy isle, and granted he was alone. I watched him try to corral all of his kids for about five solid minutes – he would get two listening and then another one was waving a small plastic sword around as if she was fighting some sort of eight-armed dragon. It was funny – but also a bit sad. He was struggling.

He kept saying things like “get over here,” “stop that,” and “c’mon” – pretty typical things for someone trying to gain control of a situation teetering on uncontrollable. And then we heard a large fart noise. It was super loud and all the kids fell into peals of laughter. The middle boy had stomped his foot on a whoppie cushion, which was now lying deflated on the floor.

This sent dad over the edge.

“You know what, now you are going to pay for that! Where is your money?? Get it out RIGHT NOW.”

Now, we all knew he wasn’t going to make the kid pay for it. I knew it, the store clerk knew it, and the kids especially knew it. The kids ignored the dad and all ran down the isle and around the corner – probably to find someone whom they respected.

So, what really happened here?
The kids knew they were pushing dad to the brink.
They knew no matter what they did, he didn’t have any follow through.
They kept testing – and finally found his trigger.
They laughed at his angry outburst and empty threat.
Dad was left feeling ineffective and outnumbered.

When you’re in this situation, take a few moments to form your plan of attack. What reasonable consequence might you propose right now, in this situation, that you will actually follow through with?  THEN DO JUST THAT.

No compromising. No empty threats.

Your kids will be mad. They will backtalk or cry or they might even throw a fit. But in the end, they will know you are a person of your word. That what you say is truth.

And that is something they will respect.

One final note: next time, plan ahead.  Have a game plan in mind since history tells you that the kids are likely to be unruly. Set up an incentive for good behavior. The old adage, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is definitely true when it comes to parenting.
Roxann Blue
©2013 Kerry Stutzman, Head & Heart Parents

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Roxann is a new mom, graphic designer, and contributing author for Head & Heart Parents. In her spare time she likes to sleep. You can learn more about her at www.roxannblue.com

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“I Want What’s On TV!”

 
IWantThatonTVMy 4 year old son wants everything he sees on TV so the other day when he said “Mom, I want that!”  I used my “brain dead skills” and replied, “I know.”   He finally stopped asking after 4-5 times of me saying “I know.”

Then Daddy came home from work and my son looked at his daddy and said “Daddy, I want that on TV!”

My husband replied “I know, buddy.”

My son looked at him with wide eyes and said “Daddy, you can’t use the same words Mommy uses!!”

I guess he’s figuring out that limits are getting firm around our house with both Mom and Dad!  It felt good to set the limit in a loving way and I didn’t have to hear him whine about it!

Kerry Stutzman, MSW
©2013 Kerry Stutzman, Head & Heart Parents

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Head & Heart Parents is owned by Kerry Stutzman, MSW, a Marriage and Family Therapist and certified Love and Logic Parenting Instructor. In addition to private therapy and parent consulting services, Kerry offers parenting classes and workshops in Denver and the surrounding areas for toddlers, elementary, and teenage children.

As author of the easy-to-read “Save Your Sanity” series, Kerry helps parents save their sanity and sense of humor while raising young children with love and laughter.

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Does That Mean “NO”?

DoesThatMeanNO
Here is a story of a mom in my class who learned a new skill to not engage in a battle with kids when they’re protesting a limit.

That skill is called going “brain dead.”

This works with kids of all ages. See what happens when she uses it to neutralize the “buy it for me” battle.

My 9 year old daughter and I were at Walmart In the middle of the afternoon rush when she asked for a bouncy ball (regression anyone?) I said “no.” She protested, fussed and whined. I got to whip out my “brain dead” phrase for the first time, “Love you too much to argue.”

She looked at me with an expression of shock and confusion. He then asked me incredulously, “Does that mean no?”

The element of surprise using a new phrase was great! She accepted the “No” without further protest and we moved on. I had to laugh to myself when in the car driving home she said, “Mom, don’t say that again.







Shelly Moorman
©2013 Head & Heart Parents

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Head & Heart Parents is owned by Kerry Stutzman, MSW, a Marriage and Family Therapist and certified Love and Logic Parenting Instructor. In addition to private therapy and parent consulting services, Kerry offers parenting classes and workshops in Denver and the surrounding areas for toddlers, elementary, and teenage children.

As author of the easy-to-read “Save Your Sanity” series, Kerry helps parents save their sanity and sense of humor while raising young children with love and laughter.

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Avoid “If-Thens” With Strong-Willed Kids

It seems that just about every family has at least one child who spends most of his time trying to figure out what others want.. so that he can do exactly the opposite.

Frustrated by their testy behavior, it’s pretty darn easy to fall into less than effective parenting practices. I hear some of these at the grocery store:
“If you’re really good, then I’ll buy you a candy bar.”
“If you don’t stop that, then you’re going right to your room when we get home!”

When parents are unsuccessful with strong-willed kids it’s frequently because they’ve issued an “if-then.” When their spirited kids hear this, they think, “Now the fight’s on! I’ll show them!”

Ironically, stubborn kids are willing to receive consequences.. and miss out on rewards.. if it means winning a control battle.

When rewards come as a surprise to kids, they have no opportunity to sabotage themselves before they receive them. When we avoid warning them of specific consequences in advance, they spend less time fighting us and trying to figure out how to find the “loop holes” in our plans.

Dr. Charles Fay
©2010 Jim Fay, Charles Fay, Ph.d.& Love and Logic® Institute

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Head & Heart Parents is owned by Kerry Stutzman, MSW, a Marriage and Family Therapist and certified Love and Logic Parenting Instructor. In addition to private therapy and parent consulting services, Kerry offers parenting classes and workshops in Denver and the surrounding areas for toddlers, elementary, and teenage children.

As author of the easy-to-read “Save Your Sanity” series, Kerry helps parents save their sanity and sense of humor while raising young children with love and laughter.

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Dad and Shopping

Marge’s kids had a history of keeping her upset during shopping trips.

They ran all over the store and were frequently lost. They had trained her to keep her eye on them to the expense of her doing her shopping.

Contrast that to my own dad, who trained his kids to keep their eyes on him instead.

We’d enter the store and as he went through the front door of Republic Drug he’d be saying, “Well guys, try to keep up. I’ll be moving kind of fast. Hope you don’t get lost, but if you do, find one of the security guys over at that desk. He’ll probably help you find a way to get home. I’ve never seen a kid lost for more than a few months.”

As he said this, he never looked back. Needless to say, we stayed close. Not only did we believe that his word was good on these shopping trips, but any other time he opened his mouth, as well.

It wasn’t until years later that he admitted to us that he had talked to the security people before he took us shopping, and these trips were nothing but training sessions.

He was a strong believer in the idea that advance training could save him a lot of time and frustration later.


Jim Fay
©2009 Jim Fay, Charles Fay, Ph.d.& Love and Logic® Institute

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Head & Heart Parents is owned by Kerry Stutzman, MSW, a Marriage and Family Therapist and certified Love and Logic Parenting Instructor. In addition to private therapy and parent consulting services, Kerry offers parenting classes and workshops in Denver and the surrounding areas for toddlers, elementary, and teenage children.

As author of the easy-to-read “Save Your Sanity” series, Kerry helps parents save their sanity and sense of humor while raising young children with love and laughter.

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Training For Shopping

When Dan was little and went shopping with his mom, the words he heard most were “Don’t touch!”

When he became a dad and went shopping with his kids, the words he said most were”Don’t touch!” It was frustrating to shop with his kids. They wanted to touch everything. That’s what they see the big people doing. Thinking there had to be a better way, he decided to conduct some training.

“Guys, here’s how I know what I can touch in the store. I know that packaged things probably won’t break. I can touch them. Things that are not packaged get broken easily. So I look at the price tag and see if I have enough money to pay for it if it gets broken. From now on you can do the same thing. Feel free to touch anything if you have enough money saved up to pay for it.”

Now the words he hears most in the store are, “Dad, can I afford to pay for this?” A little time in training goes a long way toward happier parenting.

Jim Fay
©2009 Jim Fay, Charles Fay, Ph.d.& Love and Logic® Institute

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Head & Heart Parents is owned by Kerry Stutzman, MSW, a Marriage and Family Therapist and certified Love and Logic Parenting Instructor. In addition to private therapy and parent consulting services, Kerry offers parenting classes and workshops in Denver and the surrounding areas for toddlers, elementary, and teenage children.

As author of the easy-to-read “Save Your Sanity” series, Kerry helps parents save their sanity and sense of humor while raising young children with love and laughter.

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