A Mild Technique Of Punishment

Ignoring is the mildest of all the punishments which is suitable for some offending behavior. By ignoring you are withdrawing the most important reward that every child likes i.e. attention. The technique of ignoring is particularly effective when your youngster seems determined to irritate or shock you.

Your deliberate failure to be disconcerted by her whining or her sudden use of an expletive is bound to make her stop and think. Without your anger or surprise to stimulate her, she will lose interest in her tactic. Once she has reversed herself, be sure to commend her for the turnaround.

When ignoring your youngster, be steadfast. If she is demanding a piece of chocolate and you feel she should not have one at the moment, tell her so only once. Then look away so that you avoid eye contact with her and remain silent, despite her begging. This means not giving her even the slightest nonverbal cue. Smiling as though you secretly find her behavior cute will only encourage her. And it will visibly be tensing up, a sure sign to her that she is getting to you.

Your youngster will now try everything to catch your attention, including running around the room, bouncing on the bed or rolling on the carpet. Your child may even climb onto your lap, tug at your clothes or grab your leg. It may take an act of will on your part, especially when her little face displays unhappiness, but refuse to acknowledge her actions.

Once she stops, start paying her attention to her. If she becomes involved in an activity and she has dropped her demand for chocolates, begin to praise her.

Some parents almost find it impossible to tune with the child’s whining, crying or tantrum and they give in. This is the mistake- ignoring is an all-or-nothing tactic. If you feel this happening, try removing yourself from the situation, providing your youngster is in no danger of harming herself. You might go in to your bedroom or bathroom and wait there until she calms down.

You may have to go through the process all over again day after day, as your child continues to test you. But if you persist in ignoring child behavior, you can be almost certain that it will disappear.

geeta krishnan