"If you think childrearing is difficult, it will be. "

Consequences/Punishment

John's Most Recent Articles

Kids Don’t Need Curing, They Need Correcting

Posted 3 weeks ago

No small number of today’s parents view their children through psychological lenses, especially when it comes to misbehavior. Instead of regarding a given misbehavior as simply an error that needs...

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Moodiness Is Merely a Bad Emotional Habit

Posted on 10/27/2020

Living with an emotionally dramatic child is no fun. They throw wet blankets over nearly every family gathering or outing. Little is right in their lives and attempts to cheer them up generally...

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Alpha Speech: Say What You Mean, Mean What You Say

Posted on 8/6/2019

Q: Some friends of ours who’ve read a couple of your books and attended one of your talks told us that they solved some major discipline problems with their 4-year-old just by using what they...

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How to Talk to Teens About Internet Pornography

Posted on 7/16/2019

Q: We recently discovered that our 12-year-old has been visiting pornography sites of all sorts on the Internet. When we caught him red-handed, he began crying and said he is addicted. Apparently,...

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Use 'Alpha Speech' to Get Child to Obey

Posted on 5/14/2019

Q: My 7-year-old son, an only child, is giving me fits. He’s overly active and will not cooperate in any instruction I give him. In addition, if I tell him not to do something, it’s a guarantee...

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Make 'Em an Offer They Can't Refuse

Posted on 10/16/2018

When I was a child, my most important possession was my bicycle, followed closely by my radio. My bike was how I got around. I rode it to school, friend’s houses, pick-up...

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Let’s Revisit ‘Psychological Thinking’

Posted on 7/17/2018

I call it “psychological thinking,” referring to the tendency among parents of the last fifty years or so to attribute bad behavior on the part of a child to so-called “issues” that are thought to...

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Take Smartphone Away from Sassy Teen

Posted on 2/21/2018

Q: When our daughter, an only child, turned thirteen and entered the 8th grade, it was like a switch was flipped. Almost overnight, she went from being a sweet, respectful and obedient child who...

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Put a Lid on Materialistic Excess for Kid With Sticky Fingers

Posted on 7/19/2017

Q: We’ve just been informed that our 7-year-old son has been effectively “expelled” from the private school he attended last year because of repeated instances of stealing small items from...

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Parenting Magazine's Time-Out Technique 'Even Worse Than Before'

Posted on 6/27/2017

For several reasons, I am not a fan of parenting magazines. First, they reinforce the impression that child-rearing is a very complicated affair, requiring consulting with “experts” on a regular...

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Recent Questions

Hang in There!

Posted 1 week ago

When using the kicked out of garden method for target behaviors, do you have the child stay in the room? (We are assuming you do.) We have a 10-year-old boy who has been stealing things and lying...

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Mom Needs Nighttime Nightmare To End!

Posted 2 weeks ago

I have a 5 yr old, 3 yr old and 1 yr old - all boys - who share a room. We have a 2 bedroom house so there is no other option - we have a parent room and a boy room. The 1 yr old used to share our...

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Nine Year Old Drama

Posted 3 weeks ago

I'm worried about my daughter who's 9 years old. She is overly concerned with what people think of her. She gets easily embarrassed and is highly sensitive. I feel like she feels everyone doesn't...

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Toddler On The Run Needs To Stop In His Tracks

Posted 3 weeks ago

My 3 year old has started running away from me when we’re out, and also opening the front door and walking out. How should I handle this?

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The Preschooler: in her Untamed Primal Glory--Part 2

Posted 3 weeks ago

Hi, I am submitting a follow-up response in regard to my question from 5/6/21 entitled "The Preschooler: in her Untamed Primal Glory". This was answered by Mike Smart. Thank you for your...

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Stop!

Posted 4 weeks ago

My two year old daughter has recently been running away from me when we are in parking lots or near the street. I gave her a firm spanking, but she keeps doing it. What should I do?

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Teaching the Difference Between Inside and Outside Voice

Posted 4 weeks ago

Both my children are blessed with loud voices. My efforts to stop them screaming inside our house and car have failed. Do you have any ideas on how to stop it or a good consequence every time they...

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Consultation Inquiry

Posted on 5/12/2021

Hello, This question is about my child's disobedience. In my opinion, he is a very independent type A 5 year old. He always wans to be the boss. I have been trying the methods mentioned on the...

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It's Payback Time: A Nine-Year Old's Transgression

Posted on 5/6/2021

Ok, my son and wife gave their 9 year old daughter use of an old iPad to play games. My son thought his credit info was disabled and he warned her never to buy ANYTHING. However, he has...

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Turn Wasting Time into Making Time

Posted on 5/6/2021

Our 14 year old son has been home schooled this year with a combination of online classes with teachers and online self paced classes. He is struggling with time management. He is behind in most...

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