We tried the 123 Magic discipline strategy for our foster son at the suggestion of his caseworker and therapist. We felt that it was easy to follow and understand, even for a six year old! It is a quick way to stop unwanted behavior and was helpful for us as parents to cut the emotion out of the equation. I would recommend giving it a read as it is quick to get through and implement. So, if it turns out to not work for you, there is little time wasted.
Felt this needed a little perspective, as a reaction to the other review by "poatlee". I am editing this comment a couple years after originally posting it, but I can't find a way to change the number of stars. Four is too generous. Now I'm thinking two stars might be more appropriate. This book is for individuals (parents) who feel they have lost the battle with their kids, or have lost many battles and maybe losing the war. This will offer you some support and a sense of control as quick as 123 ;-) I would NOT advocate this method for everyone, or even suggest it as a starting point for parenting, it is NOT a guide for how to be a "nasty parent". All parents love their kids and want the best for them. Kids NEED structure and discipline and 123 magic is a quick and simple behavioral method to implement those. No one likes correction when it is happening, but your kids will resent you more if you give them no boundaries and do not teach them how to respect others. Kids are not just short adults. Depending on their age/development, their ability to reason is minimal, especially when they are escalated. The other books that poatlee recommends (especially the 2nd and 3rd) have their strengths as well, and have some contradictory principles to 123 Magic. It goes to show you that parenting "experts" do not agree on methods or philosophies. Again, the main advantage to 123 Magic is that it is simple and if you do what it says, it will work (at least in the short term). Best of all it comes in a DVD.
My recommendations: If you are really interested in positive parenting, try "Positive Discipline" by Jane Nelson. It's getting kinda old/dated, but with some good, solid principles. Best parenting stuff out there right now is by Dan Seigel, a pediatrician and psychiatrist who has studied attachment theory and makes current research from neuroscience understandable and very practical. The Whole Brained Child, Parenting from the Inside Out, and No Drama Discipline. If your kids are older, Brainstorm. If you are struggling (and we all do at times), feel free to get some help from a professional, your kids worth it.
Whatever method you use, give your kids boundaries, let them know you love them and BE CONSISTENT! :-)
Absolutely the worst book on disciplining imaginable. The book teaches you to train your children like dogs, and not like little people looking for an adult to guide them as they discover their place in this world. This book is a guide for anyone who wants to be that nasty parent, whose kids grow up resenting their parents. Also the author has this distorted perspective on siblings. As opposed to viewing siblings as an essential unit that completes a family structure, his view on siblings is as if they are meant to be your kids arch enemies. I did read the entire book though with an open mind, hoping I will be able to take something away from it, and very disappointingly not one of the author's ideas resonated with my style of parenting. I would recommend:
Mommy rescue guide, The no-cry discipline solution and If I have to tell you one more time.
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