For the love of a bear

Lately, I have been trying to distinguish the difference between a real problem of Joshs, and the result of bad behavior that has gone on too long. Yes. Im admitting that I havent really cracked down on him, and am still having a hard time at it, but it’s a start. A lousy start, but a start none the less.

Ive tossed back and forth the idea of slapping his hand, spanking him and other such various forms of torture discipline…and couldn’t come up with any one sure way of doing it. One thing that I read earlier this week was that not all kids respond the same. This is true. Molly and Josh are the same in a lot of ways. They are (were?) both, stubborn. Amazing, I know, that Josh might have a little bit of an attitude to fight back. With Molly, time out worked wonders. Often times all she needed was a few minutes away from whatever was causing her to freak out, and she was fine until something (or someone) else got her upset. With Josh? This is not the case.

Time out is to him what is what a joke is to a jokester. Earlier this week, after telling him “No” repeatedly, I watched him approach the object in question, shake his head “No” and proceed to do what I had told him not to. When he saw me, he ran off and put himself in time out, and not ten minutes later was repeating the same thing. Ive heard this repeatedly from his teachers, who say he spends a majority of his time in “Time out” only to repeat the thing he had just done before he was put in time out. Their questioning him. Saying that perhaps I have set the bars too high, that he isn’t capable of learning. Based on the fact that he “Doesn’t remember”. Which isn’t the case. Time out. Just doesn’t work.

The other day, I was asking a friend about the same subject, and she suggested taking his bear for a few minutes, as a form of discipline.

Him and his bear are like THIS. There is no separating them. If they arent together, they are within feet of each other.  Josh has known Simon back when Simon was bigger than Josh.   


This bear has been his life time companion, and when she mentioned taking it, I instantly thought “No”, and quickly followed it up with “This could work”

Now before I go any further, I want to clarify that there is a distinct difference in things that Josh does. His attitude. There is a difference between when he is really scared, and when he is flat out refusing to do something because he doesn’t want to. Such as what I mentioned above, about doing something I told him not to, and putting himself in time out.

Yesterday, he was outside playing. Or, rather, digging holes, driving his truck to another area, digging dirt from there, and hauling it BACK to the hole he had began with. Whatever. It works. The only problem was when I called him in. I told him he needed to come in, in about 5 minutes. And in 5 minutes, went out to bring him in. Which is when he refused to come in. He wasn’t ready. He was having fun. He didn’t see the reason WHY he needed to come in, even after I explained to him that it was time to eat, he wouldn’t come in. Which is when I put “Bear therapy” into play. I told him that if he didn’t come in, I was taking Simon, and would keep him for a few minutes. Now, he understands, because as soon as I said this, he walked the few feet to where his bear was sitting, picked him up, and continued playing.

I took his bear, and watched, in slow motion as his mouth dropped, his voice disappeared, and he threw himself on the ground, which is when his voice returned, and all hearing was lost by those surrounding him.

I explained to him, over loud wails, screams and kicking, that when he calmed down, I would give him back…picked him up stuck him in his crib and let him hash it out in there.

It took a good 20 minutes before he was calm again, and then I went in, told him why he had gotten his bear taken away, made sure he understood, and reunited him with his long lost love.

Hes listened like a champ ever since. But hasn’t left his bear anywhere near me. Taking extra precaution to make sure Simon is close(er) to him than ever before.

Earlier today, we had a similar issue, involving Josh not listening, but all I had to do this time, was mention that Simon was going to get taken away, and he was on it faster than I could say his bears name.

Sometimes, usually, most times…The best ideas are, ideas that arent my own.



  1. Phew, I haven’t even had time to think straight but I’m about to get caught up here with my blog visits!

    I can totally relate about trying to figure out what behavior they can control and what behavor they can’t control, sometimes that can be so hard to distinguish.

    Oh. My. Gosh…that is one adorable little boy. I see why it could be hard to discipline him. I’m glad the bear therapy is helping him to behave, with such effective discipline I bet you’ll barely ever have to part dear Simon from Mr. Cutie pie there 🙂

  2. Joy: We can hope they wont ever have to be separated again, chances are, he will just hide Simon, thus making it impossible for me to actually take him again!!

    Athena: Thanks.

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