5 Things parenting experts don’t tell you about discipline

If you are like me, you have spent hours searching the internet or reading books looking for advice on disciplining your children. In this post, I will share with you 5 things that parenting experts don’t tell you about discipline.

A mom who is wearing her baby in a carrier on her chest. She is kneeling down and has her face pressed against her older child. Above the picture are the words: One Determined Life, 5 things parenting experts don't tell you about discipline.

When I had my first child, I had no clue what I was doing. I now have 3 kids and I still have many days when I feel like I have no clue what I’m doing 😉

One of the things I continually look for is advice on discipline. I want new strategies or tips to see if maybe I am missing something that will have my kids behave.

After doing extensive reading and going over lots of information, I have discovered that each piece I have read has had something missing. Everyone gives advice on the best way to discipline kids.

So, I have decided to fill in some of those blanks.

5 things that parenting experts don’t tell you about discipline

1. It may not work for you

One of the first things I realized that experts don’t tell you about discipline is that what may work for one may not work for the other.

Every child is different and one strategy that one parent shares may have zero impact on your own child.

If you even suggest that this strategy does not seem to be working for you then people will respond by telling you that you are obviously not doing it right and that you have no clue what you’re doing.

The truth is that your child may just not respond to a particular tactic.

2. It may work, but only a few times

Another frustrating that people don’t tell you about discipline is that the strategy you picked may not work all the time.

You have finally found something that works!!! Yeah!!!! A few weeks later, you use the same tactic you have been using for weeks and it no longer works.

This may be for a few reasons. The first is that young children grow in and out of stages very quickly. As they transition, how they react to certain strategies may change as well.

The second is that children are smart. They might have figured out what’s your doing and are no longer want to go along with what you’re trying to do.

3. It may work for this kid, but not the next

Your first child was easy. You got this parenting business down so you decide to have a second. You have a list of discipline strategies that worked like a dream for child 1 and think: I have no clue why people find this so hard.

Enter child #2!! You try and try and try, and nothing you do seems to work. You use the same strategies at the same stages and your child still does not toe the line. Why?? Well, your kids are not the same.

They won’t react the same way to a certain tactic as each other. You might have to find a whole new bag of strategies for each child you have.

4. Your child is too young for this strategy

I read parenting books and regularly think: wow, that would never fly for my 2-year-old. Or, I think: so what age is this strategy good for?

For some reason, books never suggest an age. It’s easy to read a book and think it’s a fantastic idea.

But then you try it out and realize that your child is not developed enough to understand what you’re trying to do.

Don’t throw the strategy out the door, just maybe put it on the shelf and try again when your child is older.

5. Time requirement

Training children takes time. When I say time, I don’t mean minutes or hours. I mean days, months and years.

There are some concepts that I have been working on with my children for years and they still don’t seem to understand. But don’t lose heart, because one day they do get it and it gets better.

In the comments below, share what parenting truths that you feel are left out of books.

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63 responses to “5 Things parenting experts don’t tell you about discipline”

  1. Brittany Giles Avatar
    Brittany Giles

    I am using the Love and Logic approach with my two year old and it seems to be working more often than not! Definitely worth checking out!

  2. Tee Avatar

    Yesssss, soo true! I don’t know how many ideas/suggestions I’ve been given when my little one was young and they didn’t work. Some I plainly refused to try, only to realise later that they didn’t work at the time they were shared with me coz little one wasn’t old enough to embrace them.
    Experts/advisors sometimes forget to tell us when it’s appropriate to try something.

    1. anne.markey1@gmail.com Avatar

      I know!! I wish they had ages attached

  3. Jasmine A Avatar

    I think the ne that always got me were the ones that worked a few times. It was so hard to let them go because THEY WORKED BEFORE!! Thanks for the post!

  4. Jennifer Avatar

    Good advice! I have raised eight and now I am raising a grandchild. No one thing has ever worked for all of them.

  5. Catherine Short Avatar

    This seems to be true about all areas of parenting! Books are good for general understanding but situations are so specific.

  6. Emily Avatar
    Emily

    These are so true! Glad to be in good company!!

  7. Megan Campbell Avatar

    Discipline is such a weird and anything task in parenting. It is not my favorite thing to deal with.

  8. Nicole Avatar

    This is so true! And a great reminder. My 3 year old has been tough for us to discipline….some days are better than others 🙂

  9. Kate Avatar

    Discipline is so hard, and especially frustrating when you’re reading advice that you know will not work on your child. I especially agree that what works on one child might not work on another – I’m in the middle of finding that out right now!

  10. Kristen Avatar

    Thank you for sharing. Discipline is hard with kids. Every child and stage is so unique that one size fits all does not all. These are such helpful tips.

  11. Heather | My Moxietude Avatar
    Heather | My Moxietude

    As a first-time parent of a 2-year-old, I am at a loss constantly when comes to disciple. Thank you for letting me know that I am not alone. ?

  12. Sarah | Digital Motherhood Avatar

    Good advice! I’ve definitely found that something tactics work for a few weeks and then no more!

  13. Jessie Avatar
    Jessie

    Every child is different. It helps to just treat them with respect, as individuals and to understand where they’re at developmentally.

  14. Rhonda Swan Avatar

    Wow, great value here in this post. Thanks for helping us to be unstoppable as we raise our children!

  15. Lisa Avatar

    I can relate to so much of this! Each kid is totally different!
    Xo-Lisa
    http://www.thatssodarling.com

  16. Mallory Avatar
    Mallory

    So true! Good reminders.

  17. Jar Avatar

    As a soon to be mother, this advice was very needed! Thank you so much for this post.

  18. Bobbi Avatar

    So true!! Especially the par about working for one kid but not another! Or that a particular strategy won’t work for your child’s age range or maturity level.

  19. Sabrina Avatar

    Yes! These are all true. I have five and still feel like I’m just guessing most of the time!

  20. Diana Avatar

    As a mama of triplets, I am constantly looking for advice. Grace is much needed for parenting. Thank you for this post

    Diana

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