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  1. #1
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    Dealing with less than good behavior

    I have a wonderful little boy. I am at my flipping wits end with him.

    He will be complaining or being mean (etc) and he will then try and negotiate with me.

    "The only way I will stop xyz is if I can do abc" to which I say "this is not a negotiation" we start again....


    How the heck to I deal with this??

  2. #2
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    My husband and I have a tongue-in-cheek saying "We don't negotiate with terrorists." Perhaps it's in poor taste in today's world climate, but we hold to it.

    How old is he? What are your current methods of discipline? What is his currency?
    ~ Mama to 4, Dayhome provider ~

  3. #3
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    If this is a daycare child then you need to speak with the parents because that is likely where he learned his negotiating skills. The parents need to be educated as to what effect their behaviour is having on the child and how they need to be the adults and set limits for their child. Doing whatever it takes to get cooperation is not parenting.

    With really cheeky kids sometimes a similar treatment back works. Just tell him plain and simple your house your rules. When he is an adult with his own house he can make his own rules. While he is a kid he will follow the rules of the adults around him. At least you know by the abc statement what he is hoping to get which of course he should not be given. That should give you some idea of what is important to him and something you can use. There is a fine line between being nasty and being firm and this is the type of child that is wise beyond his years so to a certain extent you would use the same tone of voice and hands on hips body langauge you might use with an insolent teen. Here me response when he said the ...do abc phrase he would be told "I don't think so. My house my rules. You will stop xyz because that is how we behave in this house." Do not mention his abc request at all as if you didn't hear it. Deal only with the xyz. He is in a sense negotiating but also trying to throw you off the original infraction.

    There is something to be said for sticking with toddlers that don't talk. Whining and crying is easier to tune out than insolent older ones.

    If this is your own child well wish you luck, lol.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emilys4Guppies View Post
    My husband and I have a tongue-in-cheek saying "We don't negotiate with terrorists." Perhaps it's in poor taste in today's world climate, but we hold to it.

    How old is he? What are your current methods of discipline? What is his currency?
    Agree... I do not negotiate with children. Age does come into play when disiplining children. He is using this method to control your actions, I asume that it is something that works well with his parents. Have you discussed his behavior issues with his parents? How do they feel about his "tactics"?

  5. #5
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    If it were my d/care child, I always say who is the boss? They say "my name". Good then what I say goes. I have to say this is very sucessful for me. But if he's being mean, you need to see it call it, ..I saw that, and no talking straight to an uncomfortable (on floor, or whatever you want to use) time out! Every flippn time! You may have to do this for 2,3,4, days depending on level of stubbornness, and you will find he will discover negotiaging is not working because your not listening. I have an older d/care child who is constantly bugging and touching kids, when they don't want to be, w.i.p. However his excuse always is it was an accident, I forgot. Sorry not working with me.. I put him on t/out the other day. he was appaulled at me I think, but guess what, he got the message. I think sometimes we just need to be tough and stand our ground.
    Not that your not doing this it just makes me feel better to write it all out!! Hope this helps!

  6. #6
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    See this is what is so funny-- he is my son, but I am not a negotiator. My dad however is quite literally a professional negotiator.

    It is just so tiresome. Maybe I am just getting burned out.

  7. #7
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    Well it sounds like your son plans to follow in the family business, lol. But since you know the source of his reasoning then just use that back on him. Say something like that might work with grandpa but it won't work with me. Might also want to speak with grandpa and get him to set limits for who is in control. Bigger issue is that your son needs to learn that the real world doesn't work that way either and he won't be able to negotiate his way out of assignment deadlines, school rules, etc. Better now than once his grades suffer. Some things are just not negotiable and how we treat our friends is one of them. Maybe start with one particular behaviour like being mean to the other kids and refuse to negotiate so he goes to punishment each time. On other issues try to give him control in the sense of choices - peas or beans, red shirt or blue shirt.

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    Oh mamaof4, I can competely understand why you would be hitting emotional burnout with your son. I am afraid I don't have any words of wisdom but I do agree with the others that setting boundaries as to when negotiations are acceptible will help possibly deter the negotiations during non-acceptible times. I believe in being firmly but friendly saying 'this is a non-negotable'.

    Something that may help is using I messages, when you son tries to negotiate. Something to the effect that, "I need you to do this, because this is how it makes me feel when you don't", or "I need you to stop doing this because it hurt my friends and that makes me sad". I agree that attempting to ignore the negotiation would be best too, but can you possibly turn the negotation around in exchange for good behaviour for your son to get what he would like. What I mean by this is "cleaning your room is a non-negotiable right now, but if you clean your room quickly without complaint I may consider letting you play the xbox for 30 min tonight".

    I do not let my daughters negotiate out of their 'punishments' but I do let them negatiate some terms of a grounding. For example, if one of my girls are grounded a weekend and it turns out to be the weekend that a very special activity is happening, I will let them negotiate out of it, on my terms, which is always, I will gladly exchange 1 weekend of un-grounding, for being grounded the next two. This tells me that the activity is really important to them and that they are not just trying to get out of the grounding. Sometimes, I won't make them do the second weekend because of good behaviour.

    I don't necessarily believe in giving choices (negotiating terms) to children because according to child guidance the choices should be both positive for the child, but in my home the child has 2 choices, 1 to do what I would like or to do something the child doesn't like But when a child is having a temper tanrum type behaviour, the choice is usually "1) you can stop your tempertantrum and go play or 2) you can go over to the time out corner and have your temper tantrum there". Usually the child chooses to go and play, but in the case of my daycare diva she almost always chooses a time out.

    Depending on his age, it could be he is trying to control so giving him simple choices to make each day might help him not negotiate, playfelt gave some good examples such as would you like to wear the blue shirt or the red shirt today. But this can be a double edged sword because then the child feels that s/he should have a choice in most aspects of life. So it is important on setting boundaries for what choices are acceptible.
    ~*~ Nicole's Tot-Time Daycare ~*~
    www.nicolestot-time.com

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  10. #9
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    LOL he sounds like my teen! I find it exhausting!

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