New Child Discipline Trick I Just Read About!! (Kids ages 2-12...)

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Connect Real Estate - REALTOR / BROKER DRE # 01427063

Hi there - happy Wednesday!  So, those of you who know me, know that I've been powerfully single, kid-less and independently operating- up until about 12 months ago!  Haha!  :-)  

Now, I'm powerfully *Married*, WITH-kids, and INTER-dependently operating!!  LOL!  Yes, I have become a Step-Mommy to two amazing, bright, inquisitive and competitive kids (ages 6 & 8)!  Yes, they are just like their Daddy!  :-) ...  We are finding that they would benefit from having a grounded Step-Mommy, with sanity intact, and after some careful evaluation - I've discovered that I need some new education!!  LOL.  I was perusing the child-psychology section at my local Barns & Noble, and I found what might be - outside of the Bible - my saving grace.  This book may help some of you other frustrated and hopeful Parents out there.  This book is called, "1-2-3 Magic" (Effective Discipline for Children, 2-12), written by Thomas W. Phelan, Ph.D. 

The basic idea in this book is that when a child act's out, a Parent begins to count to three.  If the child does not stop the obnoxious behavior by "3," they get a time-out, or whichever consequence works best for you.  It may be a privilege that gets taken away, etc.  Sounds elementary, right?  I thought it wouldn't work either!  But it does!  Here's the catch:  You must be SILENT after you say the number.  The pregnant pause is what lends power to this strategy.  Here's an example of a typical situation, first without "counting," and then, *with* "counting."

Without "Counting:"

Mom's making dinner, it's 5:45pm.  Dinner's served @ 6pm.  "Jennifer is 6."

"Can I have a Twinkie?"

"No, Honey."

"Why not?"

"Cause we're eating at 6pm."

"Yeah, but I want one."

"I just told you that you couldn't have one."

"You never give me anything."

"What do you mean I never give you anything?  Do you have clothes on?  Is there a roof over your head?  Am I feeding you in two seconds?!"

"You gave Jeremy one a half hour ago!"

"Listen, are you your brother?  And besides, HE eats his dinner."

"I promise I'll eat my dinner."

"Don't give me this promise, promise, promise stuff, Jennifer!  Yesterday, you had a half a string cheese at 5:15pm, and you didn't eat anything at dinner!"

"Then I'm going to kill myself and then run away from home!!"

"Well be my guest, I'm sick of this."

 WOW..  That was what might happen *without* counting... 

Now read THIS!!


With "Counting..."

"Can I have a Twinkie?"

"No Honey."

"Why not?"

"Because we're eating at 6pm."

"Yeah, but I want one."

"That's 1."  (Now remain silent Mom!)

"You never give me anything!"

"That's 2."  (Now, bite your tongue again Mom... Stay silent.)

"Ohh alright." (Followed by a grumpy, pouty exit.)


Give it a try and let me know what you think...!


Have a blessed day and may the Holy Spirit give you strength!!!  :-)

- Temple


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Connecting Ventura County's Best Home Sellers and Home Buyers...!


Temple Schneider Callahan, RE BROKER

Certified Short Sale Specialist

Connect Real Estate Services

BRE: 01427063

Ventura, CA


Direct: 805-208-6024



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Richard T. Dolbeare
Keller Williams Realty Maui - Kahului, HI
R(B), ABR, CRS...Hawaii Multi-Island Specialist

Fortunately I don't recall having those kinds of "discussions" when my kids were that age.  Or maybe I'm suffering from gray hair syndrome.

Oct 07, 2009 05:03 AM #1
Temple Callahan
Connect Real Estate - REALTOR / BROKER - Ventura, CA
Search Ventura County Homes For Sale CA

Hi Richard,

That is too funny!  Well, maybe you were blessed!!  I haven't had *quite* this example happen, but close to it!  Not for long I tell ya...  Have a great day!

Oct 07, 2009 12:46 PM #2
Robert L. Brown - Grand Rapids, MI
Grand Rapids Real Estate Bellabay Realty, West Mic

I use the 3 count rule with my grand kids. It seems to work. they will try their level best to "play" you.

Nov 26, 2009 10:10 AM #3
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