Dad's Defiant Son Needs Discipline
I'm a parent seeking advice from all the professional nannies on this blog. Our nanny just quit, after about 7 months. She was not happy, and the reason she cited was our eldest son, now 7. She says she just can't click with him - he is defiant towards her, rude, argumentative, doesn't obey when she sets limits (eg screen time), doesn't stay in time-outs if it escalates to that - he just ignores time-outs. Taking away privileges seems to have limited effect. Reinforcement like praising him when he is polite seems to help when I am there, as he doesn't act like this around me - but then we get this behavior going on when I am not there. She said, someone has to do something about him because she just can't get him under control. I feel awful. I feel like I've been a poor parent to hear my son is behaving this way. Frankly I am embarrassed. Maybe I have been too uninvolved in the specific minutiae of his day. I've been working my tail off, and it seems that I have neglected my parental duties. He appears to need stronger discipline. But I am at a loss as to what to do. So I am asking for parenting advice.
We interviewed new nannies, and found someone who seems like a good fit. I really want to set her up for success and make sure she has the resources and support she needs. I don't want a repeat of what happened (I told her what happened so that she was well aware before taking the job). What should I be doing to ensure that she is understood to be the authority when my son is under her supervision? How can I encourage her or help her to assert authority? I want him to enjoy time with her, but I also want him to respect her. How should I approach discipline? I have never used spanking, but I am not philosophically opposed to it if handled calmly and sanely - should I introduce that if he defiantly refuses to stay in a time-out? What's the best way to balance my work demands (economy so hard right now) with my need for a nanny to effectively be a proxy parent for the hours she is supervising him? How should I support a new nanny and what directions should I give her? Any helpful words and approaches appreciated. - DadSeekingHelp
at 11:05 AM