Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mothers of strong-willed children unite

{such a perfect picture for this post!}
So what I forgot to mention yesterday during our texas trip recap was how challenging our 3 year old is lately and especially during our time there, truly a pistol. I don't think I've shared too much about Gideon's temperament but it definantly falls into the strong-willed category and tests my patience on a daily basis, God bless him! While I can think of a million things I am thankful for that come with his personality like natural-born leader, matchless energy, and determination my parenting skills are a weak match to his big personality. We've tried many different disciplining styles to accomodate his willful spirit and some have worked others have not, so I'm curious can anybody out there relate? Any secrets to share or nuggets of wisdom for my weary soul?! Granted I tend to drag him to the ends of the earth on these trips and don't hold to the strictest of schedules so he's certainly not fully to blame
(part of my personality temperament!)

{Please don't misread I love this child with all that is within, just praying to be more effective in his life and love to hear any tidbits of experience out there!}

16 comments:

MamaGray said...

http://www.alankazdin.com/


I'm reading his book right now...not so much for a defiant child, but for the discipline techniques he suggests. Check it out!

ms. less is always more said...

I have one that just grew out the strong-willed toddler years and another coming into them. With my son (now five) I feel like I am finally coming out of the fog of extremely challenging parenting. At five he is more of a joy... sounds like he was very similar to Gideon at 3. But now those traits have transformed to a very social boy that makes great friends, is a leader and encourager among them, is a real "go-getter" and plays soccer like the dickens. :) I think a lot of it is a "phase" that can be carefully treaded with patience and love.

A lot of moms I know really find a lot of help in the Love & Logic Parenting books. I personally DID NOT.

But now it's starting all over again with my 2 almost 3 year old! The joys of parenting!

ps, email me if you want my copy of Love & Logic... I'm happy to send it your way (it's just collecting dust here!)

Jackie said...

My 4 year old daughter is very strong willed and I have a heck of a hard time with her as well. She just does not seem to respond to any type of punishment-time outs or being reprimanded don't even phase her! I recently picked up a book at the library titled "Parenting the Strong Willed Child" and it is a five week program created by psychologists that is more focused on how you can match your parenting skills to create more peace with your child. Their main point is that children are born strong willed and our reactions to those behaviors as parents are what will make them better or worse. That sounds pretty negative, but so far it seems like a pretty good book (only a few chapters in). Here is the link on amazon if you want to check it out: http://www.amazon.com/Parenting-Strong-Willed-Child-Clinically-Six-Year-Olds/dp/0071383018/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1274799570&sr=8-1

Good luck!

Jon said...

Well, I suppose I really should pipe up here. Between myself and my thirteen year old son, my wife and I have become pretty well-versed in strong-willed boy.

I always have to remind myself of two things:
1. I am the parent, I am in charge. I hold all the cards, and I don't have to lose my temper to express that.
2. They are listening, even when they are not listening. What I think I am failing to teach them now will be understood and applied later, usually when I least expect it.

ashlina {the decorista} said...

God and his word is the answer to all of our worries. I am only a parent of a chihuhahua so i cant understand but i know that in all things prayer will help ease the worries and fears. pray hard! be loving. have faith that you are an amazing parent just by being you!
all my love to you. xoxo

April said...

You have a beautiful child and his Mommom loves him so......of course, I will spoil him, did you have any questions regarding that? Can I suggest setting a tone for calm? (It won't work when we are there, or when you are traveling, sorry) For instance,playing classical (soothing) music, or instrumental (think new age, but no words). Remember, music can change moods, just like color and fragrance. It probably won't change his will, but may make him more pliant or accepting of the alternative.

MCD said...

I don't really have any "wisdom" because I am in the same boat as you! My 24 month old Adalie has hit a very "challenging" stage. I've been trying to stay positive about it, when I go to bed at night and wake up the next day I think to myself "today is a new day".

I try to take the challenges a day at a time. :)

Frustrated as well,

M

kiki said...

Dude, you know I'm taking notes from you! :) I think your superb. I just think you need a break or two. :) Let's have a date!

Kristie Dunn said...

Maria, you are not alone. You never will be. That's comforting to me 100x a day - whatever the challenge, it's probably not the first time another woman has seen and conquered it. It's certainly NOT the first time our faithful, loving God has seen it!
We have a very strong-willed child who is all of the wonderful things you mentioned: a natural born leader, etc. She truly NEVER runs out of ideas or out-of-the-box questions! I have attempted to put my finger on my personal frustrations in the discipline department and have often realized that I was trying to accomplish too much when she was "up." I accomplish much when my two are sleeping! haha I have discovered that it takes consistency to master defeat with my two children! Consistent discipline, consistent praise, consistent schedules. My strong-willed one responds very well to positive reinforcement. I printed out a chart from www.ChuckECheese.com (labeled dressing myself) that has 2 weeks of empty boxes. She also loves stickers. So, when she has made a good choice/done something responsible/shared with little baby sis, etc., she gets to add a sticker to the chart. After the 14 spots have filled up, we make a big to-do about it and head out for a fun-filled 3 hour trip to CEC's. Each sticker is a BIG deal, as I make it so! I let her choose the sticker, pull it off, and stick it wherever she chooses. It's hanging on the refrigerator side, right at eye level. On the reverse, she hates spankings. Time out doesn't work very well because she's too creative and always floats off to a happy dreamland haha!!! I quite literally drop EVERYTHING and will pull out our Bible in really challenging moments. I know you believe the Bible to be true and powerful. It's living, Maria! Our precious children have a soul and a war is already waged against it! Read the verses to him aloud - it serves as a reminder of what's really important to us as parents, and will minister to his very soul. God's Word will never return void. Look up "obey" in your index, etc. We read them almost daily around here! "Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right." I explain to her that this is the first commandment with a promise, "that you may live a long life."
Okay, so this is really long. But, I LOVE YOU and Gideon!!!
Lastly, I realize that we have all benefited when I have a plan. My children get "into things" when I have nothing for them to do. By that, I mean nothing structured. Lord knows there are 1,000+ toys, crafty things, books, etc. to play with - but sometimes it takes ME simply. With a laundry list of "to dos" every day, I remind myself daily of what the Lord has called me to do in blessing me with my precious little children. What a gift. What trust He has in us to give them to us to raise!!! What a calling!
You're a wonderful mother. You are a blessing to Gideon and all those around you.
Love,
Kristie Dunn <3

Anonymous said...

Well, all I have to say is you know Liam's daddy so you can just guess how challenging our child can be. He has a wonderful combination of strong will (stubborn) and wanting things a particular way like me, touched with a way with words already. He now likes to tell me I make him sad when he is corrected for his behavior. Learning the guilt trips early. You are not alone, we need to get these two together!
Kiki

Christine/Keith said...

I don't know that my wisdom is worth much considering I'm still struggling with J but I've got several books and tapes that have given me some inspiration.
We did have to really pull back get a schedule and consistent routine and then slowly introduce a little more go with the flow.
It was hard but really keeping the underlying consistent routine has helped a bunch. School I think would have been a disaster for J if we had not set that routine, because school is all about routine.
Love to chat with you soon

Christine/Keith said...

I don't know that my wisdom is worth much considering I'm still struggling with J but I've got several books and tapes that have given me some inspiration.
We did have to really pull back get a schedule and consistent routine and then slowly introduce a little more go with the flow.
It was hard but really keeping the underlying consistent routine has helped a bunch. School I think would have been a disaster for J if we had not set that routine, because school is all about routine.
Love to chat with you soon

Kristie Dunn said...

Maria, you are not alone. You never will be. That's comforting to me 100x a day - whatever the challenge, it's probably not the first time another woman has seen and conquered it. It's certainly NOT the first time our faithful, loving God has seen it!
We have a very strong-willed child who is all of the wonderful things you mentioned: a natural born leader, etc. She truly NEVER runs out of ideas or out-of-the-box questions! I have attempted to put my finger on my personal frustrations in the discipline department and have often realized that I was trying to accomplish too much when she was "up." I accomplish much when my two are sleeping! haha I have discovered that it takes consistency to master defeat with my two children! Consistent discipline, consistent praise, consistent schedules. My strong-willed one responds very well to positive reinforcement. I printed out a chart from www.ChuckECheese.com (labeled dressing myself) that has 2 weeks of empty boxes. She also loves stickers. So, when she has made a good choice/done something responsible/shared with little baby sis, etc., she gets to add a sticker to the chart. After the 14 spots have filled up, we make a big to-do about it and head out for a fun-filled 3 hour trip to CEC's. Each sticker is a BIG deal, as I make it so! I let her choose the sticker, pull it off, and stick it wherever she chooses. It's hanging on the refrigerator side, right at eye level. On the reverse, she hates spankings. Time out doesn't work very well because she's too creative and always floats off to a happy dreamland haha!!! I quite literally drop EVERYTHING and will pull out our Bible in really challenging moments. I know you believe the Bible to be true and powerful. It's living, Maria! Our precious children have a soul and a war is already waged against it! Read the verses to him aloud - it serves as a reminder of what's really important to us as parents, and will minister to his very soul. God's Word will never return void. Look up "obey" in your index, etc. We read them almost daily around here! "Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right." I explain to her that this is the first commandment with a promise, "that you may live a long life."
Okay, so this is really long. But, I LOVE YOU and Gideon!!!
Lastly, I realize that we have all benefited when I have a plan. My children get "into things" when I have nothing for them to do. By that, I mean nothing structured. Lord knows there are 1,000+ toys, crafty things, books, etc. to play with - but sometimes it takes ME simply. With a laundry list of "to dos" every day, I remind myself daily of what the Lord has called me to do in blessing me with my precious little children. What a gift. What trust He has in us to give them to us to raise!!! What a calling!
You're a wonderful mother. You are a blessing to Gideon and all those around you.
Love,
Kristie Dunn <3

MCD said...

I don't really have any "wisdom" because I am in the same boat as you! My 24 month old Adalie has hit a very "challenging" stage. I've been trying to stay positive about it, when I go to bed at night and wake up the next day I think to myself "today is a new day".

I try to take the challenges a day at a time. :)

Frustrated as well,

M

Jon said...

Well, I suppose I really should pipe up here. Between myself and my thirteen year old son, my wife and I have become pretty well-versed in strong-willed boy.

I always have to remind myself of two things:
1. I am the parent, I am in charge. I hold all the cards, and I don't have to lose my temper to express that.
2. They are listening, even when they are not listening. What I think I am failing to teach them now will be understood and applied later, usually when I least expect it.

Anonymous said...

Hi - I am really happy to find this. Good job!

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