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To Debbie (or anyone else who is interested)

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Posted by Phil on September 08, 2003 at 11:54:41:


I read your post in the Spanking thread and wanted to ask a couple questions about the 123 Magic book:

It looks like it's one of those "hooked on phonics" type programs - you can't check it out from a library, you have to order it from the publisher. Is this right?

Is it a "program" in that you have to follow certain steps on a daily basis, or is this more a book that will offer concrete tips for specific situations?

Would you recommend this for parents of preschoolers?

I'm asking these questions because I am interested in finding a book that offers tips for common discipline issues. I'm not into the idea of a program, but would consider it if it is indeed the best thing available.

I was spanked as a child and I know that it can be a very effective way to discipline a child. I don't agree with it though and so far, we've never spanked our son. He's 4 and lately has been getting very mouthy, is blatantly ignoring our commands, argues with us when getting ready for preschool, and just yesterday endured several back-to-back timeouts while trying to get him to understand that he needs to listen to us - especially when his safety is at stake.

So we're stumped. I don't want to spank him, but I must admit that the thought crossed my mind during that time-out fest. I've never seen him so angry, and he's never acted like that before. He was throwing things, screaming, crying, saying terrible things, pretty much doing everything he knows he shouldn't and as I extended his timeout for the 4th time, I was thinking it was a futile exercise (it took 8 extensions to get him to calm down long enough that we could talk about why he was being punished). I know that if I (as a kid) ever tried to do what he was doing yesterday, I would have had one sore butt - and that would have been the end of it.

Anyway, if you or anyone else knows of a book that might offer some good suggestions for dealing with this kind of situation, I'd love to know about it.


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