since naia was about 1.5 years old, as many other kids that age, naia started to throw tantrums for unknown reasons. mostly because she wasn’t able to speak up what she wants in a correct manner. naia actually knows how to speak when she was about 1 year old, but of course still in baby words. words that only people who was around her would able to decipher what they mean .. haha!
so whenever naia threw tantrums, i started implementing a time out method for her. it’s when i took her to the corner of the room where she is being timed out and was not allowed to leave until she has calmed down. does it work? of course not! most of the time, she was clueless of what’s going on. when i left her in the corner, she would follow me. but i tried to be consistent, as they say, parenting is about being consistent to what you tell to your kids. it did. overtime she did know that whenever she is being timed out means she is being put aside to calm down after throwing tantrums or did something that we’re not approved of.
to do this, i followed the rules of time-out method. first, the length is the same nominal as their age, only in minutes. so, for a 1 year old, the length of time out is only 1 minute. 2 minutes for a 2 year old, and so on. during this time out, don’t let your kid stays by herself, if they are below 3 years old. instead, talk to her, calm her down. in a loving and calm tone, tell her why she is being time out. make her understand what she did wrong that resulted her in the time out corner. make her understand that every action she does has consequences. after that, hug her and tell her to be a good girl.
does it work on naia? yes… for a while. after getting so many time outs, i found that it just doesn’t work on her anymore. so i kinda lay low for awhile. only things that considered to be over the limit, when she is being rebellious and cried for nothing and just no other things work, then i lay down the time out method. otherwise, i tried to swallow my anger and talk to her in a calm and loving manner for her to understand that i didn’t like what she did. there were times that i took the time out myself, to keep myself calm so i won’t throw tantrums back at her. so it works both ways.
after a while, it becomes the last resort of punishment for her. and yes, for naia, it becomes a punishment and she refused to be in the corner. instead of calming down, she became more rebellious. so i figured, this time-out method may not necessarily effective anymore.
as she grows older, she develops better understanding about how we treat her, how to answer us and how to lie. yes, kids her age know how to lie already. of course, as parents, we have to be smarter than them. and that’s the trick of parenting, we have to find a way to make our kids listen to us. and believe you me, it’s not easy when they are at naia’s age. when they think they are big enough, when their logic works yet their understanding about the world is still lacking. so when things aren’t go their way or how they think it should be, they explode!
after neishia was born, naia fell in love with her baby sister immediately. but at her age, she doesn’t know how to control her touch with a baby. so there are times that she’d over pull neishia’s arm or her pat to neishia’s head becomes like a slap. or when she thinks she can carry neishia like a doll, all by herself. so extra measures have to be taken whenever naia is around neishia, but we still need to keep a straight face that we don’t consider naia as a little rascal who would ruin the party. after a while, naia got bored because she still cannot play with neishia. so naia started to show as if she was jealous, and asking for more attention, all the time.
between hubby and i, we tried to take turns. ensuring that one parent gives full time attention to one child that s/he is responsible for at that moment. this way, we can reduce naia’s jealousy and can keep her comfortable of getting the attention she wants. but of course, it’s easier said than done, especially when her unknown emotion comes into the equation. this doesn’t result that she wants to hurt neishia or anything, but she becomes extremely difficult to deal with. when told to do something, she pretends as if she doesn’t hear it. and when we forbid her to do something, she does it anyway, just to make us mad.
so there are times that i gave in to this behavior that resulted me throwing tantrums to naia. screamed on top of my lungs to what she did, while she cried as if i don’t love her. it’s a mess! i didn’t like it, naia definitely hates it. so, i figured, maybe this time out method may work afterall, only with a bit of modification.
first, when naia is having one of those tantrums or being rebellious, i took the time out to calm myself down. or i hug her or laugh with her to break the ice. if that doesn’t work, i took her to the guest bedroom (empty room), sat her down and told her that she’s not being punished but i want her to calm down so i can talk to her. of course, she refused, thinking that she is being timed out and being punished (btw, naia hates to be called a bad girl. she always wants to be a good girl whether she’s being one or not!). once she is calmed, i’d talk to her and hug her and kiss her. if she did something bad, i’d ask her to apologize first. usually, this will work, tho it takes time. and as her mom, i know how she reacts to things, so i offer different things that she cannot say no to, like saying “i’ll read you a story, okay?” but of course before that, i told her what i didn’t like from her behavior earlier and i want her not to repeat it again (of course, she would the next day and the cycle continues.. but at least she calms down for now).
parenting is tricky. it’s easy when you read it in the book. but it’s soo hard when being implemented cuz every kid is different. as parents, we know our kids better than anyone, so remember the parenting theories as your guide, but use your instinct as a mom. your instinct usually always right!