"If; when your child does something "bad," you feel bad about it, your child won't. "

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Rude, Disrespectful 8-Year-Old Has Bullying Behavior

Posted on 11/14/2006

STOP 8-YEAR-OLD'S BULLYING BEHAVIOR BEFORE IT GETS WORSE Q: My 8-year-old son is a poor sport. He's been asked to leave several sports programs because of rudeness to other players and...

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Don't Treat 3-Year-Old Like an Adult

Posted on 7/4/2006

DON'T TREAT PRECOCIOUS 3-YEAR-OLD LIKE AN ADULT Q: Our 3-year-old daughter is very intelligent for her age. I know all parents think their children are smart but several doctors have told us...

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Child Forced to Write Letter of Apology to Teacher

Posted on 8/30/2005

CHILD FORCED TO A WRITE LETTER OF APOLOGY - HORRORS! A friend of mine in Virginia happened to be looking in on her fourth-grade son's class one day when he talked back to his teacher. My...

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8-Year-Old Soils Pants

Posted on 5/31/2005

BOY 'FORGETS' TO USE TOILET AT SCHOOL Q: My oldest son, soon to be 8, still soils his underwear during school or recess. Some of it is that he is embarrassed to use the toilet in the...

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29-Month-Old Outbursts

Posted on 5/24/2005

IGNORE TODDLER'S HARMLESS OUTBURSTS TOO MUCH ATTENTION TO MINI-TANTRUMS COULD LEAD TO ESCALATION Q: Our 29-month-old son is mostly well-behaved. But when he doesn't get his way or becomes...

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Defiant 14-Year-Old

Posted on 5/10/2005

TEEN'S DEFIANCE NOT A REASON TO LIGHTEN TASTE OF REAL WORLD Q: The punishments I give my 14-year-old daughter - mostly for blatant defiance of the rules - seem to make her even more defiant....

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Misbehaving Children

Posted on 4/12/2005

WHY DO PARENTS DEFEND CHILDREN'S BAD BEHAVIOR? The mother of two small children writes that when she takes them to indoor play areas she often finds herself dealing with parents who not...

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2- and 3-Year-Old Unruly on Disney Trip

Posted on 3/8/2005

A WHOLE NEW WORLD: TOTS TURN UNRULY ON DISNEY TRIP Q: Our two girls, ages 3 and 2, are very well behaved both at home and in public, so my husband and I decided to treat them to a memorable...

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Teen's Hormones and Unruly Emotions

Posted on 2/1/2005

DON'T BLAME TEENAGERS' HORMONES FOR THEIR UNRULY EMOTIONS Q: During a recent talk show appearance, a psychologist said that runaway hormone levels often cause the rational part of the...

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6-Year-Old Disruptive at Home and School

Posted on 1/18/2005

SOME OLD-FASHIONED DISCIPLINE SAVES ANGST, TIME AND MONEY A collection of "parenting shorts": First, an absolutely true story from my ever-growing "True Stories of Psychobabble" file,...

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5-Year-Old Saying Disrespectful Comments about Parents

Posted on 1/18/2005

See no evil, hear no evil A 5-year-old girl, when sent to her room for punishment, can be heard talking about her parents in highly disrespectful language. The father asked what they...

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Emotional Outbursts of Hate

Posted on 1/18/2005

The love-hate thing Q: Is it disrespectful for a child to yell "I hate you!" at a parent? A: Most people, it seems, think so. I don't. The difference between a disrespectful statement...

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7-Year-Old Homework Issue and 5-Year-Old Discipline Issue

Posted on 12/28/2004

LEAVING CHILD BEHIND NEVER PROPER INSTEAD OF PRETENDING TO DRIVE OFF AS PUNISHMENT, PULL PRIVILEGES LATER ON Q: Yesterday, while I was helping my 7-year-old daughter review for her spelling...

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4- and 8-Year-Old Unruly

Posted on 11/30/2004

UNRULINESS IS REACTION TO STRESS IN THE FAMILY Q: My husband and I have a 4-year-old boy and an 8-year-old girl. They both whine and cry when they do not get their way and do not seem to think...

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8-Year-Old Not Wearing Glasses at School

Posted on 11/16/2004

Q: We recently discovered that our 8-year-old daughter is not wearing her new glasses at school. Even though they are really quite attractive, she says they make her look "nerdy." We have tried...

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16-Year-Old With Many Issues

Posted on 8/10/2004

KEEP STEPSON GROUNDED FOR COMMUNITY'S SAKE Q: Life with my 16-year-old stepson, who lives with my husband and me because his mother is a mess, has been a battle from day one. School has always...

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24-Month-Old Runs Away From Parent

Posted on 5/4/2004

CAN'T OUTRUN THAT 2-YEAR-OLD? OUTSMART HER Q: When I call my 24-month-old daughter to come to me, she takes off running like a bat out of you-know-where. She obviously thinks it's a game...

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5-Year-Old Outbursts

Posted on 3/30/2004

DON'T WORRY ABOUT STOMPING Q: Our 5-year-old son, when he doesn't get his way or is told to do something he doesn't want to do, will sometimes give the floor or table one quick pound of the...

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Defiant 4-Year-Old

Posted on 3/9/2004

DEFIANT CHILD NEEDS DOSE OF 'TICKETS' Q: I need help with my 4-year-old daughter. She is our second child and a major handful. As I write this letter she is in her room for the day, due to...

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8-Year-Old Tells Mom "I Hate You!"

Posted on 1/13/2004

Q: Occasionally, when I discipline my 8-year-old daughter by, say, taking away a privilege because she's disobeyed me, she screams that she hates me. It seems to me that this is disrespectful....

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20-Month-Old Climbing Into Crib for New Baby

Posted on 1/6/2004

CONSEQUENCES OFTEN LOST ON TOTS Q: I am expecting my third child in six months. I put up the baby's crib this week with the intention of teaching my 20-month-old "monkey" to stay out of it. She...

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Too Many Consequences for 5-Year-Old

Posted on 1/6/2004

Q: The other evening, while playing a racing game, my 5-year-old began getting upset because he was not winning, so I shut off the game. At that point, he went absolutely ballistic, screaming that...

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Disciplining 5-Year-Old Adopted Child

Posted on 11/25/2003

DON'T BE AFRAID TO DISCIPLINE ADOPTED CHILD Q: We recently adopted a 5-year-old girl from China who had spent her early childhood in an orphanage. Before bringing her home, we read several...

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Disciplining 4- and 8-Year-Old at Grandparents for the Holidays

Posted on 11/11/2003

GRANDPARENTS WHO LET CHAOS REIGN YOU CAN'T CHANGE THEM, SO JUST LIMIT THE TIME THEY'LL INDULGE YOUR KIDS Q: It has become tradition that every year, during the holidays, my entire family...

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28-Month-Old Gets in Last Word

Posted on 11/4/2003

Q: What's the best way to handle a toddler - my 28-month-old son - who says "No" or "I'm not going to" (he doesn't yell, but his tone is haughty) when you tell him to do something, but complies...

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4-Year-Old Refuses to Dress for School

Posted on 9/23/2003

A LITTLE DISCIPLINE WON'T DAMAGE CHILD Several columns ago, I related the story of an encounter with the mother of a defiant 4-year-old girl. The child had refused to dress for school in the...

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Defiant 4-Year-Old

Posted on 9/2/2003

MOM WON BATTLE, NOT WAR AGAINST DEFIANCE The mother of a 4-year-old girl tells her daughter to dress for school. The child replies, with defiance dripping from every syllable, "I don't want to,...

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15-Year-Old Refuses to Wear Bands on Braces

Posted on 8/5/2003

LIFE GETS SIMPLER WHEN PARENTS ARE STRICT I decided to depart from my usual format and let a reader write this column. Occasionally, I get letters from parents telling me how they've solved...

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Does Time-Out Work with Agressive 2-Year-Old?

Posted on 7/22/2003

Q: Is it OK to use timeout with a child who's barely 2? While I was watching church nursery today, a 2-year-old boy started pushing and hitting the other children. I put him in a chair every time...

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Most Effective Consequence for 28-Month-Old

Posted on 6/3/2003

Q: I have a friend who puts her 28-month-old son in his room for several hours if he does something really bad, such as bite her. When he's put there, he cries for a while, then plays. She uses a...

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Today's Mom is Afraid of Her Child

Posted on 5/6/2003

TODAY'S MOM LIKELY FEARS HER CHILD A short collection of musings on the nature of parenting and its current condition in America: By the time your child is 24 months of age, he is making...

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3-Year-Old Acting Out in Public Places

Posted on 4/8/2003

SHOW 3-YEAR-OLD SHE'LL PAY FOR FITS Q: My daughter and first child is 3 years, 8 months old. She is generally well-behaved except for a bad habit she has of screaming and running away from me...

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3-Year-Old Cries When Disciplined

Posted on 3/11/2003

HELP SON LEARN TO CONTROL TANTRUMS Q: Our 3-year-old cries whenever we reprimand or discipline him. Whether we spank (occasionally), firmly redirect, or simply say, "No, you may not," he begins...

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Chidren Will Change When Their Behavior Causes Them to Become Upset (Babysitting Story)

Posted on 2/25/2003

SOMETIMES A 'SHRUG' GETS RESULTS Every so often, I run across a story that qualifies for inclusion in my growing "Parenting at its Best" collection. These "bests" almost always involve...

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Divorced Parents of 8-Year-Old Should "Tag Team" Discipline

Posted on 2/18/2003

TAG-TEAM DISCIPLINE WORKS - IF IT'S WELL-COORDINATED Q: My husband's 8-year-old son lives with his mother. We see him every other weekend and for two weeks in the summer. He has major problems...

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4-Year-Old Stomps, Complains, Pouts Before She Obeys

Posted on 12/24/2002

DON'T LET BEHAVIORS ESCALATE Q: When I ask my 4-year-old, Lulu, to do something, she will do it, but not before she stomps, complains, talks under her breath, huffs and pouts, or all of the...

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32-Month-Old is Defiant and Disrespectful at Preschool

Posted on 12/24/2002

Q: I am the mother of two boys: 6 months and 32 months. The difficulty is with the latter. This well-mannered, easy-going, very loving child is having trouble at Mother's Morning Out. This is...

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8- and 10-Year-Old are Disrespectful to Dad and Step-Mom

Posted on 8/27/2002

VISITATIONS SHOULD END AT ONCE IF SONS DISOBEY Q: I am black and my husband is white. We have weekend visits with his sons, 10 and 8. The weekends are tortuous because in our home the children...

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7-Year-Old's Misbehavior Frustrates Family

Posted on 8/20/2002

HERE'S TICKET TO BETTER BEHAVIOR Q: My husband and I are raising a 10-year-old grandson and a 7-year-old granddaughter who was a "crack baby." She is very hyper, oppositional and interrupts...

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Discipline: Two Different Stories

Posted on 4/23/2002

KIDS AREN'T WELL-INTENTIONED; THEY REALLY NEED 'STUBBORN LOVE' This is a two-part column involving two stories, each from the mother of a rebellious little girl. Concerning her daughter, the...

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3- and 4-Year-Old Refuse to Leave Preschool Class with Mom

Posted on 2/19/2002

SURPRISE CONSEQUENCES CAN CURE CHILDREN'S MISBEHAVIOR A mom recently asked me for advice concerning a discipline problem that had had a small beginning, but was getting completely out of hand....

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When Misbehavior Occurs, Punishment First, Then Talk Later

Posted on 1/15/2002

NAUGHTY CHILD? PUNISH FIRST, ASK QUESTIONS LATER When I misbehaved - and it didn't matter whether the misbehavior occurred at home, school or in the neighborhood - my parents rarely asked me to...

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Midde Child Syndrome Has Easy Cure

Posted on 9/18/2001

GIVE THAT MIDDLE CHILD A TICKET FOR EACH ACTING-UP INCIDENT Q. Do you believe in "middle child syndrome" and if so what are some ways to avoid it? My husband and I have three boys - 6, 3, and...

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7-Year-Old Hides Food in his Room

Posted on 9/11/2001

LET SON WHO SWIPES FOOD LEARN HOW TO COOK IT Q. Our 7-year-old son has been diagnosed with attention deficit disorder and oppositional defiant disorder (ADD/ODD). The problem is that he takes...

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7-Year-Old is Like a Compulsive Gambler

Posted on 8/14/2001

IF KIDS GET AWAY WITH IT, THEY TAKE A GAMBLE AGAIN How are an undisciplined child and a compulsive gambler alike? They both believe, despite objective evidence to the contrary, that they...

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Lower the Boom on Misbehavior

Posted on 4/24/2001

'THE BOOM' NIPS MISBEHAVIOR IN THE BUD I've asked several recent audiences, "Raise your hand if you think the punishment should fit the crime." Every time, nearly all hands go up. There...

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Mom Controls 8-Year-Old, Dad Rewards Her

Posted on 4/3/2001

DAD'S 'PRIZES' WILL BACKFIRE - BUT SO WILL MOM'S CONTROL GAME Q. My husband occasionally gives our very stubborn and manipulative 8-year-old daughter "prizes" for doing what she is told. The...

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5- and 9-Year-Old Behavior Problems

Posted on 3/13/2001

'INCORRECT' DISCIPLINE GETS RESULTS, CAUSES NO DAMAGE This week, I offer two true stories that illustrate the compelling nature of "psychologically incorrect discipline" (PID) - any corrective...

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4-Year-Old Agressive and Disrespectful

Posted on 3/6/2001

Happy Ending File: A good buddy pediatrician tells me he recently saw a 4-year-old who had suddenly become aggressive, disrespectful, and emotionally explosive after several major transitions,...

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No Nonsense Approach to Parenting

Posted on 1/2/2001

WARNINGS CALL FORTH DISOBEDIENCE, AND YOU CAN'T LET THAT SLIDE Q. Do you recommend giving children choices when they don't want to do what they are told, as in, "You can either sit in this...

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