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casheroo's avatar

Does anyone have any success stories with the use of 1 2 3 Magic, for disciplining?

Asked by casheroo (18086points) June 11th, 2009

We just got the cds, because our son is apparently full force in the “terrible twos” and he’s not even two yet.
We want to properly discipline him, but no spanking or yelling (obviously, since he’s only 23 months old)
I’m really hoping this program gives me the keys to control my temper when he does bad things, and know how to react better. I think it revolves round time outs? I’m not sure since I haven’t read too much about it, but my mother’s friends have told her i’s worked for them.
Any experience with the program? How did you like it? Did it help or not at all?

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9 Answers

jlm11f's avatar

Hmm. I know there is a question on Fluther that discussed several such parenting systems and I remember 123 Magic being mentioned there. I also recall shilolo talking about it in the chat room. I think he uses the system with his kids, so I would bug him about it if he doesn’t answer your Q. I wanted to link you to the other question, but I can’t seem to find it through the lovely fluther search :(. Will edit or repost on here if I find the question.

Edit: AHA! I have beaten Fluther search. Here’s the question I was thinking of. And this one might interest you too.

Judi's avatar

I don’t know about that program but my daughters (way better moms than I ever was) calmly use the naughty corner. When they come out they explain why they were in the naught corner and then they apologize. I really like that they intentionally don’t say, “that’s alright” when the child apologizes. They say, “I forgive you.”
It was so cute the other day. The two three year old cousins were playing and one got excited and threw a plastic hammer at the others head. he went to the naughty corner. When he came out he said,“I’m sorry Liam for hitting you with the hammer.” Liam said, “I forgive you but I don’t want you to do it again.”
Encouraging the use of words is also a great tool I didn’t use. They are always saying, “Use your words.” How did these girls get so smart anyway?

nebule's avatar

ok… What is the 123 magic system… I’ve tried to find out but can’t seem to without buying stuff.!! (bad start really in my mind!)... I’ve had problems with my son.. but the best thing that has worked.. well…what’s the 1–2-3 thing first?

casheroo's avatar

@PnL Thanks for those links. I’m really hopefully that it helps. I hope Shilolo comes on and Hearkat, to let me know how it worked out for them.

hearkat's avatar

I found out about 1–2-3 Magic when my son was about 7, and I wish I had it when he was under 2!

Basically it gives you the tools to help you deal with the misbehavior without getting all riled up. First you need to make sure that the rules are age-appropriate and clear to the child. Then when the child misbehaves, you remind them of the rule to explain why their behavior is unacceptable and add, “that’s 1”. If the child persists or argues, simply say “that’s 2”, and if necessary add “that’s 3” and enact a time out (or whichever consequence you’ve established for a particular behavior… for example, if my son got violent, he’d have time-out until he calmed down AND he lost TV/videogames for the rest of the day. If it was near bedtime, he lost the following day. I typed up the rules and hung them up on the wall after we reviewed them, so he couldn’t claim ignorance).

Keeping your cool and not getting caught up in a power struggle is tough! But they know the rule, and you just reminded them of it. If you are consistent, the child eventually gets the hang of it and stops fighting back since it gets them in deeper.

And always remember to encourage good behavior, and acknowledge their efforts to improve.

Whatever method you choose to discipline your child, consistency is the key, so they know what to expect and that they can’t manipulate you.

Good luck!

casheroo's avatar

@hearkat Thank you so much for the advice! I really appreciate it. I’m excited because I feel I’m not consistent and it’s not benefiting my son at all, so hopefully it helps me so I can help him. He’s so strong willed, but I’m hopeful.

nebule's avatar

love… and seeing things from their point of view..that’s the answer..which doesn’t mean you have to compromise yourself btw

hearkat's avatar

Definitely trying to see it from their perspective makes a difference. Don’t take it personally as a sign that you are failing as a parent when he acts up… he’s just doing his job of learning and growing and pushing the envelope as well as your buttons!

And you need to do your job. I used to tell my son, “Mommy is not my name, it’s my job title; and my job is to teach you how to be a responsible, caring person in about 18 years’ time”.

Seriously, if you can detach yourself from the process, you can guide him lovingly, because you are demonstrating the behavior you’ll want him to emulate by remaing calm and in control of yourself and the situation.

Don’t look at it as ‘crime and punishment’ but rather ‘behavior choices and consequences’ – which can be good or bad… good behavior brings good consequences in getting the acknowledgement of a job well done.

Don’t reward every good deed, because then they do it for the prize, not for the sake of doing the right thing. And when he does misbehave, let him know that the the behavior is the problem, not him.

I think one of the biggest challenges in childrearing these days is getting everyone on the same page – Mom, Dad, extended family, day care providers, etc. But remember to be the kind of person you want him to become. Kids never learn from ‘do as I say, not as I do.’

Val123's avatar

With any system you use, the number one MOST important thing is consistency. Also, I had some luck when my kids were little by posting certain mis-behaviors that they did too often on the fridge, along with the discipline that was to follow. You can change the behavior of little ones in a day. Boy, I miss those days!

One other thing that was a learning experience for me. My counting to 3 was usually followed by a slap on the hand or a swat on the butt. One time my little daughter was doing something….something with the TV. I don’t even remember what it was, but I was impatient, counted to 3….then realized whatever it was didn’t deserve a hand slap! But….I had to follow through, for consistency’s sake. The only good part was, at that age they really don’t know the difference between what is mildly annoying and physically dangerous, so for all she knew she deserved it. But it was a lesson for me because I felt so bad about swatting her for something so minor. I was very careful with my 1,2,3’s after that, because once you start you HAVE to follow through.

@hearkat That’s great advice. After they get to a certain age, I didn’t even impose a time limit on their time out. All I said, was, “OK, you have time out until you can figure out what you did wrong (they always act like they didn’t know, or it was someone elses fault, you know) and if it takes you 10 seconds to figure it out, or 10 hours…well, it’s up to you. As soon as you have it figured out, you can get up on your own, come to me, and ‘splain what you did wrong, and what you could have done differently.” I used to run a daycare, BTW, and I was amazed at how stubborn certain kids could be! They’d sit there for an hour giving me dirty looks, until finally giving in and coming to me! But usually it was just a matter of seconds.

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