Tuesday, March 13, 2012

First Time Out

At Grant's 18 month check-up the doctor went over behavioral stuff with us. She asked if he was testing us yet - which of course he is. Hello, he has been for months! She told us that this is a good age to start "time out". So just how do you put a year-and-a-half old toddler in time out? Yes, doc, do tell. 

She said you put them on a stool or in a chair. Somewhere solitary and "not fun". If it seems like they will try to get up, then you sit there in front of them (emotionless, of course!) and make them stay there. Set a timer for 1 minute. When that's up, then the slate is wiped clean and you - apparently - are no longer mad. If he keeps it up, you keep doing "time out". Yes...uh huh...we'll see.

That was February 28th and I've been wondering at what point I'm going to implement the whole "time out" thing. I'll admit, I've never really believed in time out. Perhaps that's because I always got a firm hand on my backside and that pretty much did the trick. BUT, Grant really isn't old enough to get all the spankings he may deserve. So perhaps there would be "time out" in his future.

And there was. Last night was our first ever one minute "time out". Grant had a rough day. He was running in the house that morning, fell, and took a nose dive into the step from our living room to our hallway. Big nose bleed and fat lip. Lingering pitifulness all day long. He came home knowing he could milk it. It was a gorgeous afternoon, so I took his pitiful face for a good walk around the neighborhood and then we came home and ate dinner. Then he wanted to color. He wandered off with his crayons and in a few seconds time had managed to color a rather large area of my kitchen floor (thank goodness for washable crayons!). I took his crayons and popped his butt. I told him no, we only color on the paper (he does know what that means). And then we proceeded to a chair for time out. He was already crying and even more pitiful. But I set a timer for one minute and sat there stone-faced as he cried - and he was really trying to work it too.

The timer I set may have been on my phone. So I may
have snapped this picture. He looks sorry, doesn't he?
The minute was up and, per doctor's orders, the slate was wiped clean. After a whole 60 seconds of staring at the face in the above picture, I really wasn't mad anymore. Could you be? He was a little bit pissy for the rest of the night (until story time) but when he went back to his crayons later, he never strayed from the paper. Not really convinced it was the time out that did it but I guess I'll try it again. Probably tonight and for who knows what reason!


  1. I dont think it's the timeout that is the point per se. I think the fact that you are saying 'there are consequences for breaking our rules'. Having to sit there still must be MURDER on a child...but then again, so is jail time if he grows up and thinks rules aren't for HIM because mommy never showed him consequences. BING!
    I think I'll definitely implement spanking...Im a huge believer in it, but not the way it is sometimes done. I remember my parents spanking me out of anger or because my behavior frustrated them, and not cause I broke any rules. I'd prefer to stay away from that even though no one's perfect. I'm lucky to have a few friends who are amazing parents whom I hope to emulate in this area.
    Is it weird that kids crying when they get punished cracks me up? lol 'awwww...are you getting punished? Yeah? Does him not like that?? awww!"
    Note to self: try not to antagonize my child...

    1. love: uncleNastyMcsnarky


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