By the time my son was 12 months, we were wondering how to teach him right from wrong. He was still too small to understand much. By the time he was 14 months, he was running and getting into EVERYTHING! Vince was literally trying to climb the walls by this age. Obviously, he seemed to young for time out, but we had to figure out something. Today lets talk about when to start using time out.
Figuring Out Time Out
Where to start?
It’s important to set some ground rules for yourself. What do you think deserves time out? For me, it was doing something mean or dangerous. Some examples are: jumping off the couch, hitting, trying to draw on the walls, or not sharing. I categorize destroying the house with being mean. It’s mean to mommy!
I would never put him in timeout for tantrums. I think it’s important for children to know it’s okay to feel emotions. During tantrums I either try to calm him or let him cry it out.. depending on the intensity.
When They’re Too Young
I think you have to wait till a certain age to start time out. When they’re too young, they can’t really comprehend the point of it or even what’s going on. However, it’s still important to enforce that it’s “time out”. When they’re too young, you can take time out with them! With Vincent, until he was about 19 months old, we did time out together.
I’d tell him “no” a few times (kids definitely need to hear it more than once) and if he didn’t listen, then I’d say “okay lets take a time out”. Time out included removing him from whatever he was doing, going to a different area, and taking a break together. We would read books or work on a baby puzzle.
The great thing about this is that they’re still learning the phase “time out”. They’re learning it means they’re going to stop what they’re doing. You also get some quality time with them and a book/puzzle. So take a break with them for just a few minutes.
When They Are Older
Once Vince was 19 months old, I realized he was starting to comprehend more. He’s still too young to sit in a chair and wait out his time. For me, what works best is putting him in his bedroom. I know that sounds silly, because there are toys in there, but he NEVER wants to play in there. Plus, theres a baby gate so we don’t have to shut the door.
He’s an at age where I can tell him “no” and if he doesn’t stop then, I can say “you will go in time out” and then he will usually stop. If he doesn’t he knows he has to go to his room. We time this by age, so He’s only in there for one minute and thirty seconds.
Once he gets older, we will have a time-out chair, but for now that just won’t work.
Important Time Out Takeaways
- Figure out what calls for time out.
- If they’re under 18 months, take a time out with them.
- If they’re old enough for time out, time it by age. 2 years = 2 minutes.
Hope The Helped!
Hope this helped you on your crazy motherhood journey! Comment below and tell me about your little one(s). Follow me n social media to chat!