The Doctors welcome parenting expert Dr. Deborah Gilboa to weigh in on a controversial parenting technique where a child gives the parent a time-out when the adult is not listening. Should your little one ever get this kind of power?
Dr. Gilboa discourages this type of tactic and notes that young kids do not actually want this type of power in the long run. Instead, she says it would great for a parent to model this behavior and tell the child they need a moment to themselves to calm down and be a better listener, but she does not think allowing a child to dictate a time-out is ever effective.
With teens and tweens, she says it is great to have them communicate to the parent if they feel the parent is speaking to them in a respectful manner, but she says even at this age, the child should never be dictating discipline for a parent.
She notes that children need to understand early how a strong foundation is built between the parent and the child and that a parent is the one who guides behavior, not the other way around.
As for when a time-out is an effective form of discipline for kids, Dr. Gilboa says a time-out is meant "to teach self-regulation skills" and should illustrate how mindfulness and allowing oneself to take a few moments and walk away from a situation is vital and very effective. She says a time-out even as short as 1 minute can be very helpful for most children.
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