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Boundaries

May 27, 2011

I have just discovered a new blog, Not Just Cute, and while reading it the recent posts I came across, one on giving children choices and setting boundaries.  In it is a paragraph incredibly relevant to my current parenting of PlumGirl:

They really do push your boundaries, because they want to know where those boundaries are.  Believe it or not, for as much as children want to make choices, they also want to know that ultimately you will take charge.  They want to know that they are safe to explore and experiment and test because they know they can trust you to intervene and keep them within safe boundaries.

We have entered toddlerhood and PlumGirl has just started becoming conscious of the boundaries I place on her and that I will enforce these boundaries.  I do not place many boundaries on her as I think that exploration is an important part of learning for her right now, but there are some things that are non-negotiable.  When ever PlumGirl is testing these boundaries, I try to enact a natural consequence for her actions.  I am not using time-outs (though I may use a version of these in the future) or spankings.  I am really attracted to more positive disciplinary techniques and find that they come most naturally to me.  When she crosses a boundary, I want her to be able to predict the consequence or at least have it make sense to her.  The point of the consequences or discipline is to teach her to make better choices in the future and I think that positive discipline is most effective for this.  I also think that positive discipline best helps to build her trust in me that I will keep her safe even when she is testing boundaries.


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