Sunday, May 22, 2011

Time-In ...Took Me Awhile~Adoption/Attachment

What is "time in"? It is used as a consequence for unwanted behaviors, just as "time out" is. With "time in" the child may be held by you, may sit near you, or many other variations.

I know you guys probably all got it, but I really didn't get it. It just didn't make a lot of parental sense to me. I don't know why it eventually clicked, but I finally understand "time in" vs. "time out". I don't think there is a perfect method for every child. Yet "time in" makes tremendous sense to me for many neglected and hurting children.

I knew "time in" was recommended by many and it was often what we were supposed to do, but.....

I thought I would share with you why it FINALLY makes sense to me. It took YEARS and I've been wanting to write this for a long time.

A neglected child resides in their own little world. They learn self sufficiency, self-stimulation, and live in a place that is all theirs. After enough neglect, a place all alone will be "normal" for them. A place that everyone leaves them alone will be exactly what they often seek.

When we have a neglected child that is acting out, often "time out" is EXACTLY what they want. They want to be left alone to live in their own world...a world that brings comfort. If for NO other reason (though there ARE other reasons) when we discipline many neglected adopted children with "time outs"...we are in all actuality, rewarding them. THIS IS WHAT THEY MAY WANT.

WOOOOO...this was an eye opener for me.

Think of a child's mentality. I misbehave and I get what I want. Hmmmmm.....

To break it down even more.
Naughty=Reward

So you have a child that feels they are getting a reward for acting out. When we give them a "time in" we are giving them what they DON'T WANT, but NEED. The result is a VERY mad child. Yep, they may be angry and resentful. They may hit, throw themselves around, and all together act up when in "time in".

Yet the first result is that they find out they do NOT get what they want when they act out (a good thing). The second, and the most important, is that they get what they need...touch, love, the reiteration that we will NOT push them away when they're naughty.

From a parent with a sensory issues child, I was told,"My child would calm down a ton quicker and be fine after a "time out". They were detached though. When I did a "time in" and had my child set next to me, they did NOT like it, but the end result is that our connection was not severed and we grew closer"

The result of a "time out" may be what we as parents crave at times (believe me, I get it)...peace, sweet peace...but "time in" may be more along the lines of what our children need.

I don't think there's only one way. I firmly believe every child is different and for some "time out" genuinely works better. I also think that many times we, as parents, don't try "time in" because it just goes against what seems right to us.

It goes against common sense...until we tear it apart and analyze it.

For those of you that got this concept a LONG time ago, thank you for bearing with me. It took me awhile, but I finally get it.


1 comment:

  1. So glad you are home again! Good points! We've had great success with time ins for our children, rather than time outs. It does make sense, when we consider things from their viewpoint. In fact, when ours are little enough, time ins mean they are literally strapped to mama or daddy in a carrier or sling to help with the attachment that we want to build.

    We are praying Jael home!

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