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Was this the right thing to do?

I just got through putting my 3 year old daughter to bed. Usually she goes to bed without a problem, but tonight she was screaming that she wanted to wear different PJs than I put on her (she wanted fleece footed ones that were WAY too warm for a night like tonight), then she wouldn't stop screaming so her dad could give our infant a bottle and put her to bed. I told her that if she couldn't calm down and stop screaming then I wasn't going to read her bedtime stories. This is a usual part of her routine. So anyway, she kept screaming so I told her "It's time for bed. No stories". I know I yelled and sounded kind of scary. She kept crying and saying "But that's how we go to bed, Mama!" and it was breaking my heart. I did the rest of the bedtime routine (put on music and talked about our day), but I refused to read. Was messing with her bedtime routine a bad idea? I just felt like I had to follow through with what I threatened.

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Asked by MamaApril2 at 7:38 PM on Sep. 23, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

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Answers (5)
  • It's best to follow through with a punishment. If she won't listen and you set a consequence, then she knows what will happen. Seems to me like she is also trying to push buttons right now. Seeing just who she can get to bend to her will. She wants all of the attention. Just keep to your normal bedtime routine and if she tries to deviate from it again by insisting on this or that or screaming, let her know that behaviour isn't acceptable with you or dad. Tell her stories will go and if she pushes further, no mommy talk time that night. Stick to your guns. It's hard, but it will work.

    Answer by mom2BOYZnDad at 7:54 PM on Sep. 23, 2009

  • I think you probably should have taken away something else or found another way other than taking away story time but that's just me. Story time isn't like playtime, it's actually a time where they learn

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:35 PM on Sep. 23, 2009

  • I do the same thing i usually read her 2 stories and I take one away at a time. And then I start with her stuffed animals that she sleeps with. Usually by the first story she straightens up. You have to take something she likes and stories are something kids love.

    Answer by Cherish050307 at 9:43 PM on Sep. 23, 2009

  • No. You did the right thing. In our home, we have a standing order of "Say what you mean, mean what you say". Kids need to learn early that sometimes you must pay the consequences for their behavior.
    Good luck.

    Answer by Robsmommy at 10:31 PM on Sep. 23, 2009

  • I would have handled it a little differently. But I don't think what you did was wrong, it just may not have been the best choice. But once it came out of your mouth, you had to follow through.

    Next time, give her choices (do you want your princess pj's or your flower pj's). She is at an age where she need some control over what is happening, especially with a new baby in the house. If she continues to scream then just tell her that bedtime is in 10 minutes or 15 minutes, and she needs to choose. Does she want to go to bed with her story and talk etc. Or without. Then walk away. Same concept, but you have just put it in her hands. SHE is now in control of what happens, and you are not taking something away from her but allowing her to choose what to do.

    Answer by Petie at 1:06 PM on Sep. 24, 2009

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