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September 04, 2008


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Wow, superb blog layout! How long ave you been blogging for? you make blogging look easy. The overall look of your website is wonderful, let alone the content!

FYI, someone has plagiarized you (as well as many many others): http://mommyoutnumbered.blogspot.com/2008/11/of-tots-and-tongues.html

My comments of late have been er...a little off topic but this time, while I'm on an off-topic binge, I want to tell you that 1-2-3 Magic is a book we use at home and I insisted that my teachers read/watch video of at my daycare. It is that awesome.

That one reading, by my husband and myself, turned our household around. We were both teetering on the edge and with that book and 3 sessions with a behavioral counselor (for us, not the kid), we made things so much better at our house.

The thing is, it tamed number 1 but with child number 2 we aren't doing so well and more often than not, we are left gritting our teeth. That kid is so different than the first that we've yet to find the place where we can reach him.

Anyway, just wanted to shout an Amen toward that book you referenced.

Mockery: "Ok, now lay down on the ground and kick your little legs."

Threats: "If you don't calm down I'm going to blog this."

Treats: "If you stop right now I'll let you go online and troll Zach Braff's blog."

I'm locked and loaded and waiting for the tantrums. So far we resort to mockery: "Ok, now lay down on the ground and kick your little legs." I don't think that'll work for long. So I'll begin threatening: "If you don't calm down I'm going to blog this, kid."

this made me laugh out loud, my oldest daughter is so much like yours it was like I was reading about a scenario from my own home that you so eloquently described in your own words. thank you!

just a warning my lil sass mouth is 5, and it will get worse, as you know but it really is fun to chat with about to your huz later I think. you must see the humor in this parenting stuff ya know?

My son just keeps calling me 'mean' for a while until I show him mean by placing him in a timeout. Meltdowns are thankfully almost done with. Now I just have to crush that streak of defiance. Independent my ass.

You know, in all fairness, I'm 27 years old, and I'll be the first to admit that tepid yogurt is just downright upsetting. I don't care WHO you are.

So I commented earlier that I would try offering other options for Noah to express his anger like you did. Naturally, a tantrum ensued when I wouldn't let him have cereal right after supper. He was mad and stomping his feet like a 2yo and slamming his door. I put him in the naughty spot, then when it was done I asked him if he thought there was maybe a better way to express his anger. He looked bewildered and said he didn't know. I told him he could just try telling me that it upset him. Then I could've explained why I wouldn't let him have it. He said, "Oh. I'm not used to doing it that way." I told him not to worry, that we'll work on it.

Anyway, the point is, thanks for mentioning it earlier. It honestly hadn't occured to me and it seems so obvious. Duh!

Drama, tantrums, sticking out tongues and the "you're always mean- are just tactics all children use to push their parents buttons. It's known as Martyrdom. (This can be found in the 1-2-3 Magic book.)
Time outs are many times more effective if the child knows they must be silent and still before their time starts- and if they make noise and have to be told to quiet down then there is a penalty of either starting over- or adding more time (like half back in).
A little girl sticking out her tongue may be funny but bottom line is- doing this is extremely disrespectful. Not putting a quick ending on this will only lead to bigger and more disrespectful behaviors.
When confronting her on this- and any child not only must the punishment be firm- but your tone of voice must be serious and firm as well- so they know it's not funny, it's not a game and mommy isn't laughing (at least not on the outside).
Most recently I've taken two professional tantrum, sassy, physically aggressive 3.5 and 2 yr. olds and am happy to say we see no more tantrums, we have quiet time outs, and there is a newly established respect, peacefulness and joy in the household. :)

I LOVE 1-2-3 Magic!!!

I have a drama queen over here too. If I had a dime for every time I dragged her kicking and screaming from something she didn't want to leave...well, I wouldn't have to blog anymore:-) I love 1-2-3 Magic. It really is the only thing that works with a tantrum-prone child.

I'm thinking you're doing just fine staying out of the condiments cabinet.

I just had to come back after a rough evening with my 7yo. He wanted to act like a 2yo so he got treated like his almost 2yo brother. The little brother barely napped this afternoon so he was ready for bed at 6pm. Guess who else went to bed at 6pm? Ahhhh, the peace and quiet. I wish I had some wine because I've had enough whine today.

Are we taking all this seriously? Nothing is in jest? Are you sure!?!?!

Tabasco? Spanking? Ack.

I just sort of ignore my 4 year old when she does this to me. It works now. Am I raising a heathen then for not doing anything about it now? Whoops.

I wouldn't spank her sticking out her tongue, nor would I put Tabasco sauce on it. I would ignore it. The more angry my kids can make me, the more they do a particular thing. I might even stick my own tongue out at them. I mean, how bad is it when a kid does that? At least they're quiet about it. lol.

When mine misbehave, I put them in the naughty spot. Not time-out, though. That just gives them time to think about how mean you are. Naughty spot means they're naughty. When the time is up, I make them tell me what the bad behaviour was (if they can't, then I explain it to them). Then make them apologize, then give them a hug and tell them I love them. I saw this on Super Nanny and it works wonders.

Kristen, you did wonderfully by offering different options for expressing her anger! Maybe I should try that on mine.

I am disturbed by the Tabasco sauce punishment. In my opinion, that is incredibly extreme and cruel. I found this article from the Washington Post, which says, "Pediatricians, psychologists and experts on child care and family life contacted for this story strongly recommend against the practice." http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A52899-2004Aug9.html

Ok, I'm prepared for the fallout, but my kids have learned that when the offense involves the mouth...tongues, talking back, lying, just being plain ugly...I will punish the mouth. 2 drops of tabasco sauce directly to the tongue has done WONDERS in altering attitude. AND Chick-fil-a carries little travel packets of tabasco sauce so I get to keep them in my purse for threatening the punishment. It's wonderful.

wow, I am not against spanking, but not for that. I am just speechless. Was she kidding?

We do the 1, 2, 3 method here too. I'm just waiting for Thomas to test me to three. So far taking away toys works, especially beloved teddy bears. He has to earn them back and it's making for a much kinder 4 year old, lemme tell ya. Good luck!

And Jen? Spanking does not work - ever. We don't hit our dog, why the hell would we hit our kids? Oh right, because it's very wrong.

I get "My Mom never lets me do ANYTHING! HHHMMMMPPPH!" This after working over everyone she can find to give her what I said no to: Dad, Gramma, etc.

My response? "I don't speak HHMMMPPPHHH! What language is that?"

Can't hit her, though. Time out with nose to the wall, etc. No hit. Wrong wrong wrong.

BTW for those of you out there whom only have 1 or 2. I WOULD STOP RIGHT THERE. Just a little advice no one probably ever mentioned.

Woops. THEY did not start swearing. That was supposed to be "THEN" . ME. Swearing.

I woke up this morning with a kinked neck and messed up shoulder from having four kids and me in my queen size bed. I am walking around like frankenstein now but with my head tilted to the right side and my two little ones don't know what to do with themselves after their big brother and sis started school. They constantly do not listen. a 2-year-old-about-ready-to-turn-3 and a 13-month-old-little-girly-destroyer are now set out to ruin my sanity. PLEASE GOD HELP. I've been asking nicely and they started swearing. This is the punishment I get. I am way too smart for them but somehow I am being stupid. Yelling, screaming at times. Hubby is away for 4 weeks. Me, myself, I, and four kids. Dishes piled up 2x daily. 2 butts to wipe throughout the day. Stomping feet is what my 7 year old does. Whining is my 5 year old. Crying is my 2 year old and well, my year old does a combination of all 3 on top of her own little quirkiness like giving me a dumbfounded look and laughing obnoxiously. Sigh...

Am with you Kristen, I'm afraid to know what extreme would be.

The arguments about spanking aside, smacking a kid for something so small seems really mean hearted. The only thing you will accomplish by going this route is making them afraid of you.

You should kick her in the neck! Then put her in the closet! Then send her off to boarding school! Then off with her head!

All you pansies that won't inflict corporal punishment for a pre-schooler trying to establish independence as part of a very normal milestone -- what the hell is wrong with you?

Oh thanks for a little treat of what I'm in store for soon. Can we talk about the cute mermaid drawing things again?

And Jen - why spank her on the ass when you can punch her in the face? I think that would really learn her.

Silly girl. You spank when your child sticks their tounge out. When your child breaks a vase you get out the 2x4. The first time they skip school you run them over with your car. It's the only way to get through to kids these days. I just wonder why it's so unpopular.

Wow, Jen. If sticking out a tongue is extreme, I'd hate to see what would happen in an actual extreme case.

So many nice comments, yet not one that says "I would've smacked her"

Guess what - I would've!

Yeah yeah, I know, spanking is a very unpopular practice now-a-days, but as a Mom, I've found in extreme circumstances - it's the most effective.

So yes, I would've smacked her.

I get the "you're always mean to me" bit too! No matter what I'm telling my almost 8 year old to do - I'm mean.

Well....I can tell you...as a dad of 6 kids (between 4 and 16) it never stops!
It is always something. some fun...some not so fun. brace yourselves!!!!

Need an idea?

My oldest (now 17!!!) used to have fits, tantrums, and talk back a lot. First, I realized that the majority of trouble usually occurred in public places. Second, I discovered that even at home, she liked playing for an audience - even if it was an audience of one (namely me). Third, I figured out that as annoying and infuriating as it was for me, she still needed an outlet.

So I found this old carpet. I think it was just a circular throw rug. I put it in her room. Then I told her that from then on, she was free to yell, scream, make faces, talk back, whatever, whenever she was mad. The catch? It had to be on THAT carpet. Away from everyone else, away from anyone in the house, away from me. I wasn't going to be her audience anymore for her outbursts. She could come to me when she was done and she could be calm.

This worked great! The rages and sassing soon wound up to be shorter and shorter because there was no one around to be the drama queen for. And you know what? There were only a couple of outbursts in the making in public places from then on. As soon as she'd start, I'd calmly tell her that her carpet wasn't here and she'd have to wait until we got home. Crises averted. By the time we got home, she had forgotten all about the need to throw a tiz waz.

She soon decided that the walking and the waiting for the use of her carpet for her melt downs wasn't worth the effort. This trick worked for a number of years. She always knew the carpet was there and she could use it whenever she wanted. She just didn't need to. And then she grew up.

Teenagers, however, are a whole other problem.

I'm reading the comments and getting depressed. Is there no reprieve before the teenage years? I'd better get prepared.

I need to count to ten myself more often. But I've been saying that for years.

It's so hard not to giggle at them, isn't it?

Nooo!! This was our first really awful morning of temper. Our daughter is 18 months and just started giving me the "how dare you, Mommy" look. I started my day at 4am with the screaming and the indecisiveness and so, so many tears. I don't want to acknowledge we have years and years more of this!

I can totally picture my 19 month old doing this in 3 years. She is already perfecting her tantrums and recently began hitting her head on the floor in protest. (I secretly am proud of this, as I grew up listening to stories of me doing that)!

Yep, yep, yep all of the above. Dang four year olds. Every time I get told I'm mean, I make them do a chore, as they could care less about the corner at this point. An I hate you mommy (or daddy) gets one night of the wii taken away. Basically right now, the wii is all ours, they are off it for at least the next week and my house is going to be dam clean.

My girl has been at the tongue sticking out routine, too. I've gotten to the point now where I literally tuck it back in her mouth whenever it comes out.

I don't think that's in any of the How To Parent books.

My 12 yo once told me our house is where fun goes to die. It was hilarious, but the fact that I laughed when he said it pissed him off even more.

So familiar...last night my son said to me "you like to boss me around, don't you?".

ahhh, I remember those days, just like it was yesterday...oh wait it was yesterday. the teenager doesn't stick out her tongue but with that look she tosses out I almost wish she did.

My son will turn 8 in October and still tells me that he wouldn't have acted a certain way if I wasn't so mean to him. To him "mean" is apparently telling him that it is time for bed. Dear God, I am already fearing the teenage years.

I feel like a real grown-up when I answer my 3 year old's "You're not the boss of me!" with an "Oh yes I am!"

I don't think I'll be authoring any parenting books any time soon.

My 3.5 year old has started correcting me on EVERYTHING. It used to be cute. Now, he may not reach his 4th birthday without being in permanent time out.

What I want to know is where did he learn the whole "your so stupid" tone of voice? It's not like he's watching sitcoms yet.

It all starts with the tongue.

Wait a few more months and you'll be getting "daddy wouldn't make me" and "But my friends say that".

We have foot stomping and alpha male chest puffing like "You wanna piece of me?" In return my son gets a "Don't challenge me, Boy." And the mouth. I hate back to school mouth as I call it. Yesterday I tell him to pick up his pajamas off the living room floor and he says "But I'm comfy." Way wrong answer. Oh the joys, and from what I hear the best is yet to come because he's only 7 now and the little one is 2. The 2yo just throws himself down and cries crocodile tears. That's just hard not to laugh at.

It gets better, it really really does. My little drama queen is five now.

Don't you just want to grab that little tongue and SQUEEZE though? Oh, HOW are they born KNOWING how to annoy their parents?

My daughter (2 y/o) is just starting to really sass me. I can relate. Her favorite is "No, Mommy, NO!" with dramatic point and "Mommy, just leave!".


Can't wait until her retorts are more clever than mine.

And Conshie is just down the block from me. Wild.

Your little girl sounds like such a sassy lady that I have NO idea how you keep a straight face.

When my daughter was that age and she would have her "moments", I very clearly remember thinking inside my head - well at least she is cute.

Certain days that is all that kept me going:)

Of course and the fact taht I love her.


My son is only just turned two, and I am actually looking forward to the days when he sticks his tongue out and stomps when he's angry instead of having a whole self monumental melt-down.

We are also experiencing a little drama queen of our own over here. The growling and stomping is really getting to me. But, I suppose if that is the worst she is going to do to display her anger, I should consider myself lucky?!?

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