Appropriate Punishment??? - Saint Peters,MO

Updated on December 16, 2009
S.R. asks from Saint Peters, MO
5 answers

Hi Moms!
Oh, am I mad! One of my 6 year old twins has always been a challenge when it comes to his behavior. He does all the typical things that boys do and more. He is usually the cause of most fights between all the siblings. He can be very draining but I deal with it. He also very loving and emotional.
Today, I am just really pissed!
He saw my Burberry scarf hanging in the closet...and took SCISSORS to it. Cut of 3/4 of the fringe and chopped up the one end totally. THEN LIED about it for days. Until just now when I calmly just asked if he could please just tell me. So, then he admits it but makes up a huge fib on how it accidentally happened.
I am so mad.
I told him he can't play Wii or his DSi for the next 2 days. However, we are flying to Switzerland on Wednesday so I have to let him have the DSI back on the plane or everyone will suffer.
He just got $100 for Christmas. Do you think I should make him give it to me? The scarf runs about $200 (I was a gift)
What is an appropriate punishment?
Thanks soooooo much for your time :)

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answers from St. Louis on

I hadn't responded previously because I wasn't sure what to respond. Still really don't know, but I can say I can sympathise with the draining part. My youngest (now 9) literally exhausts me & yet he too is very loving & caring. I have to agree that a 6 year old doesn't understand the costs of things, but it wouldn't be a bad idea to make hime replace your scarf with a different one because they do have to learn respect for other people's things. I know it won't get you your ($200)scarf back, but it's about the lesson & not the cost. Does he participate in any sports or anything else where he can release some of his extra energy? He may need something that lets him have his "own identity" 7 it wuold also give him the positive attention all kids need, not saying he doesn't get any. I don't like jumping to the ADHD seems that's all people want to look at now days. There's alot of things you can do to help your child before you decide to have them medicated for the rest of their lives. Meds are the quick fix, but I have seen too many negative effects of these things to approve of them, but that's just one person's opinion. It's a HUGE moneymaker for the doctors & the drug industries & let's face it they're there for the money or they wouldn't charge as much for their meds as they do...Good luck & try to take a deep breath...hopefully a vacay will be just what everyone needs!

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answers from St. Louis on

Hi S., I would suggest that you make an appointment with your childs Doctor and clear up any medical issues before punishing him. It sounds like he is very aware of his behavior, but cutting up your scarf on purposes and lying about it may actual be signs of anger, or aggression. No, I am not a specialist in this field, I am the Mom of three grown children, and own and operate a licensed childcare center for 100 children, so I have seen and heard many things the last 17 years. I strongly suggest seeking a Dr. advice firt. I also feel at that age, they have no concept of money-cost of things, however taking him to the store and buying a nw scarf worth maybe $80 and giving him a little change could let him see there are some conquesnses for his behavior. As far as the airplane trip and giving in, I would limit the time at least, he could have his electronics. Just my 2 cents worth. :)

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answers from St. Louis on

It appears that he is looking for your attention. Children will often act out just to get the parent's attention. You have other children and are expecting another. How much one on one quality time are you giving this child--that does not have to do with his bad behavior. I would keep the scissors away from him. He did tell you the truth eventually. You disciplined him and now move on. Also, get a good workup done on him and make sure he does not have ADHD or some other major problem. Try positive attention for the good things that he does and see the results. Be sure to never hit and don't yell. Good Luck.


answers from St. Louis on

Wow, I would be mad too. But I guess I would have to ask, who is giving your son the $100 for Christmas. If its not you, than I dont think the person giving it to him intends on buying you a ridiculously over priced scarf with it. Im sorry that was rude, but Id rather give money to a straving child than spend $200 on a scarf! Anyways if my statement didnt bother you too much. I think what I would do is make him do extra chores around the house, of course you are not going to make money from this, but he will learn that you have to work hard for things you want and its not good to destroy someones property like that. I also think you are going to have more problems when you punish him and then give into him with the DS. Yes it may be a necessity for you on the plane, but being aware of that, I wouldnt have made that a punishment. Dont give in! He does need to learn respect and values.


answers from St. Louis on

Hi S.,

My question is, Did you give him the $100 gift directly to him ...on his hand? Well, if it is so, you should make him to give it back to you (you may want to open a saving account for himself) About the DSI, since you imply, it would be a great problem for everybody you may want to give him back, but just because there is no time for you to find something else to keep him amused I guess....if you find something else..that would be great and better...
In my opinion, about the scarf you should talk to him in the most CALM and FIRM way you possible can do it, and remark to him that was wrong, and then you will take away a privilege for a LONG time (something else than a game, a favorite toy or a couple, TV or something really important for him) You are teaching him about CONSEQUENCES. Good Choices: Positive outcome; Bad Choices: Negative consequences.
Discipline starts at early age, and this doesn't mean you have to be harsh, or extremely hard on your kids. I don't believe that adhd or something similar is the cause. I don't understand why today these behavioral problems or a child just acting out to get attention or in a bad mood is immediately attributed to adhd. There are kids hard to manage, yes! There are more challenging kids, yes! I do think so, and they NEED a lot of routine, consistent discipline, short and clear instructions, repetition, and a loving but firm hand to hold on. It is easy? Absolutely NOT, but we as moms have to do it to raise good and healthy men/woman for our world.
I won't judge you about money spending H., because everyone knows his/her reality, and I won't judge you about your parenting style because we live what we choose to live with most of the time,and people and kids are different. So, my suggestion for you is just start giving your child a written list of expected behaviors with consequences and/or rewards/prizes (whatever you feel comfortable with)and start from there. My older kid is not easy; he is loving and friendly; very smart and clever, but not an easy child (the opposite to the younger one!), and because of my experience, I can tell you that a consistent discipline (make your kids behave in an appropriate and accountable manner, obey you and other people, being nice and honest little people) is not an easy task but it helps to let them know what YOU expect from them before hand, and remind them over and over again about consequences or good outcome depending on their behaviors.
By the way, giving lots of money to a child, I think is not healthy at all, save it for him and let him have a little portion of it to get something nice when he behaves. Just ideas....

Good luck, and start from the beginning......You are a good mom ..We,moms, do the best with the "tools" we have at the moment....

Have a safe trip and a merry Xmas!!!!

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