Think a shock collar is a bad parenting decision?
I ask because a friend wants to know. Totally. Sorta.
See, I have this toddler, who is a holy hellion. And we've lived with grandparents for the last four months while we sold our house and shopped for new one, so she has become a holy spoiled rotten hellion.
Over a year ago, she went through a biting/kicking/hitting/throwing things/tantrum phase. We worked through it, found acceptable alternatives, and she found other outlets for her naughty urges.
So imagine my joy when the biting/kicking/hitting/throwing things/tantrum phase reared it's ugly head again this week.
And the awesome part? Poor Bennett has become the target of quite a few of her chucked items. Poor kid, he just sits there and looks at her with gummy, doe eyed adoration as she chucks whatever is handy at him whenever she feels pissy.
I have tried time out. She absolutely loves it. We spend the entire time with her laughing hysterically while she climbs up from her "naughty seat", and I repeatedly put her back.
I have worked hard on my stern, "mad mommy" face. Until I had kids, that face was pretty effective. It got me far in the business world. Now however... it elicits her naughty dimple grin while she waggles her eyebrows at me.
I have tried patiently explaining why her behavior was unacceptable and giving her alternative outlets for her naughtiness. She laughed, then hit me.
I even *might* have tried the highly controversial spanking after she chucked a book at Bennett's head at point blank range. I gave her what I thought was an attention getting pop. She laughed. And completely tested my self control.
So I am at a loss at this point.
I'm pretty certain that grandparents die a little every time a grandchild cries. It has definitely been a topic of discussion. A screaming toddler certainly isn't my favorite thing either, even if I'm the only one in the house that believes that.
But a few tears ARE a necessary evil in the name of parenting and enforcing the rules of acceptable behavior.
So one of my friends suggested a "play yard" for time outs. Essentially, it's a glorified child cage, but I am getting desperate so I thought "eh, it's worth a try".
Want to know how that one turned out? She LOVES it. Her first time out, she sang and danced in her new fort. As soon as I let her out, she threw a series of massive tantrums to get back in.
That picture below? It was one of said tantrums. She had just finished a go in the "naughty pen" and wanted back in. Seriously. So far, none of the five runs has registered as punishment.
Doesn't quite sound like "winning" at parenting, does it?
In fact, there was so very little winning going on that Sterling repeatedly put her doll in the naughty seat this afternoon. When I asked her why, her response spoke volumes, "it's FUN!"
Yep. Evidently spending time in time out is so awesome that she didn't want her doll to miss out.
So thus the hypothetical shock collar question. Because that's about the only thing I haven't tried...