Last Friday was a rough day. I called our place The House of the Time-Outs and Spankings. I had expected it to be difficult — just getting Jet used to a new routine, etc.
However, we’ve run into a couple of issues, and I’m seeking opinions.
First, you should know that I’m more prone to use a time-out (one minute for each year of age) for discipline than a spanking. For starters, it doesn’t hurt me as much. I hate spanking Jet. Sometimes I feel like it seems to him that I’m taking my frustration out on him instead of the spanking being logical consequences for his actions (a.k.a. discipline). Time-outs also seems to be more effective with him.
So, here are the problems. When I put Jet into time-out, he takes a swipe at me. He also yells while he’s in time-out. He doesn’t yell any words. It’s more like a cross between a scream and a growl, and it’s definitely directed at me. He does that about three or four times during his three-minute time-out.
I know that hitting is wrong, and he should be disciplined for it. I usually just consider the time-out to be punishment for the previous incident as well as the hitting. I do make it a point to tell him a stern “No hitting!” when he hits me, and I address it in our post-time-out pow-wow. I make him apologize for both things. He says he’s “Sorry for [fill in transgression-of-the-day here] and hitting and yelling”. I tell him that I forgive him and I love him.
My question is this: Should the hit and/or yell escalate the punishment? If so, to what? Spanking? It bothers me to say, “We don’t hit – here’s your spanking”…Here’s Your Sign. I don’t think a longer time-out is effective or appropriate, so… ?