View Full Version : "A Playful Approach To Discipline" by Dr. Gordon Neufeld


mildadhd
03-13-16, 09:54 PM
Hi.

In my experience as a "step dad/primary caregiver" who did not have the option of using more traditional forms of punishment/discipline. I feel and think Dr. Neufeld is almost spot on, when it comes to the benefits of a playful approach. I have lots of feelings and thoughts on these topics and I hope to learn to express myself better as this thread discussion expands. Everyone's help appreciated.

..It turns out that there are five root problems that underlie almost all the behaviour that is typically subjected to discipline — and discipline does not provide a solution to even one of them:

The most common reason for problem behaviour is immaturity.
Children are not born with the ability to solve problems, take another’s perspective, judge outcomes, or manage their emotions and impulses. Even when knowing right from wrong, they are often unable to deliver. Even their best intentions will too often go unrealized. Although these developmental deficits lead to considerable problem behaviour, they cannot be corrected through discipline. Only true maturation will provide the outcomes we desire. In the meantime, we should consider what to do with a child until mature enough to act according to their knowledge.

A second major cause of problem behaviour is a lack of right relationship with the adult in charge.
Children must be deeply attached and in a state of trustful dependence in order to have a deep and systemic desire to be good. When this attachment is lacking, children will instinctively resist and oppose when they feel coerced. The term for this is counterwill. This kind of problem behaviour cannot be addressed through discipline; in fact, discipline will make it worse. The appropriate question to ask is how to develop the kind of relationship in which children naturally want to be good. If that underlying desire were there and we made sure to safeguard this sacred trust, there would certainly be less need for discipline.

The third underlying reason for a significant portion of problem behaviour is children’s strong emotional impulses, which seek release.
All discipline does is aggravate the very emotions that are getting a child into trouble in the first place. When we sense that emotion is driving behaviour, we should ask ourselves how we can help the child get this emotion out without getting into trouble. An understanding of this dynamic alone would change our own behaviour considerably.

The fourth reason for problem behaviour is that a child is not being instinctively moved to be cautious, careful, and concerned when they should be.
These attributes are not personality characteristics to be taught, but rather the fruit of a healthy alarm system. For children to stay out of trouble and out of harm’s way, their thinking brains need to feel the feedback of an activated alarm system when trouble looms ahead. Too many of our children have lost their ability to feel cautious, careful, and concerned, and so they become discipline problems by default. The question we should be asking ourselves in cases like this is how to help restore the child’s capacity to feel cautious and careful when this is called for.

The fifth root cause of problem behaviour is the inability to feel futility when it is encountered.
To address problem behaviour at the brain level, children need to FEEL sadness and disappointment when they encounter something they cannot change. Too many of our children have lost their feelings of futility. They do the same things that do not work over and over again and lack the resilience to know that they will survive not getting their way. Discipline itself cannot foster adaptation, nor can consequences or sanctions produce the right result. Only the right feelings will do the trick. If behaviour has become stuck, we should be asking ourselves how to help the child find the lost tears of sadness that would help them walk the maze of life.

If these five root causes of problem behaviour were resolved, there would be very little need to discipline a child. We must remind ourselves that discipline itself cannot correct the root issues that underlie most problem behaviour. In fact, conventional discipline tends to make matters worse. If this were truly understood, we would know that the real challenge in discipline is not to make headway or to teach a child a lesson, but rather to ‘do no harm’ and to find a way of dealing with the symptom behaviour until the underlying issues could be addressed. This insight would fundamentally change the way we interact with our children, and not only when problem behaviour occurs.

That brings me back to play. Surprisingly, play appears to be the answer to the very problems that we usually try to correct through discipline. That is why play is the default mode of the immature. And that is why I believe in play, not work, to deliver the outcomes we so desire in our children..

http://neufeldinstitute.org/a-playful-approach-to-discipline/



Reading full link (part one) by Dr Neufeld highly recommended. I am really looking forward to the (part two) "A Playful Approach To Discipline" in April's Neufeld Institute editorial.

Mildadhd

ginniebean
03-14-16, 12:09 AM
Another reason is the presence of a developmental disability. This advice seems geared to children without a developmental disability. I'm not saying it's bad advice but it's not particularly geared towards children who do have one.

mildadhd
03-14-16, 12:32 AM
Another reason is the presence of a developmental disability. This advice seems geared to children without a developmental disability. I'm not saying it's bad advice but it's not particularly geared towards children who do have one.


I think supervised free play is the best approach to discipline for both people who have ADHD (and people who do not). Many of the basic human infant emotional needs essential for healthy development are promoted during daily free play, when a primary caregiver is consciously supervising.


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mildadhd
03-14-16, 12:52 AM
Daily supervised free play does not cost money.








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mildadhd
03-14-16, 01:36 AM
Another reason is the presence of a developmental disability. This advice seems geared to children without a developmental disability. I'm not saying it's bad advice but it's not particularly geared towards children who do have one.

Ginniebean

Why is a playful approach to discipline, not geared towards children who have ADHD, in your opinion?



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ginniebean
03-14-16, 10:23 AM
Ginniebean

Why is a playful approach to discipline, not geared towards children who have ADHD, in your opinion?



>

Please don't put words in my mouth I don't have that opinion. What I pointed out was the author made NO reference to children with a developemental disability assuming that all 'behaviour' issues are the same when they are not.

Children with a brain disorder are significantly different enough from children without a brain disorder. If this is not accounted for then something is lacking. Adhd is not simply a maturity issue, not all children will grow out of adhd and in fact many will live with it their entire lives. There's enough minimizing of adhd by pretending it's just a small thing that a bit of parental tweaking can fix.

I have no problem at all with using different methods but it alone is often not enough. Not even mentioning brain disorders is a big drawback for me because it appears to assume a tragectory for all children with some delays being possible. The delay in a developmental delay may, and often never does, catch up fully and brings with it many additional issues that go unmentioned by this fellow. That's all! I have no problem with this method just the lack of acknowledgement that this is not a global fixer upper.

mildadhd
03-14-16, 09:04 PM
Supervised free play promotes development of emotional-self-regulation, in early life. Every human has immature emotional-self-regulation circuitry, in early life. I could not think of a better way than supervised free play to discipline a person who has ADHD.






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mildadhd
03-14-16, 09:35 PM
In my experience, during supervised free play, the child gets to decide what to do and the primary caregiver plays along, with safety in mind.







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sarahsweets
03-15-16, 08:15 AM
I agree on some level what the underlying message regarding discipline. The issue that piqued my mind was that one section that talks about the inherent almost instinct-like ways that problem behavior relates to the child. In the link you provided, the author talks about how if those 5 things were corrected there would be no need for discipline. I dont see how you can correct or solve something that seems to be genetic or hard-wired into the child. How can you use plays as a way to correct something instinctive and does instinct even be something that could be corrected?

I also wonder if we can use the term discipline in regards to correcting behavior. I guess I view discipline when it comes to "problem" kids as something that requires negative messages or that discipline is a must physically to correct the unwanted behavior?

Am I making sense?
Sometimes the word discipline is used to describe learning a skill, like discipline for say, piano lessons. Like, "it takes discipline do something well or learning a skill- which means repetition, practicing and seeing results.

Maybe I am just thinking of discipline as a negative, or something that requires a change in behavior.
Im rambling though because my meds havent kicked in.
Overall I am in support of positive re-enforcement to work in correcting all behaviors.
I dont know about anyone else but being belittled, abused, invalidated or whatever other negative mentioned never helped me in correcing behaviors.

mildadhd
03-15-16, 08:06 PM
The second part to Dr. Neufeld's editorial will be in April's edition. I am really looking forward to reading part two. Anything not quoted are my own interpretations and experiences.









Love mildadhd

mildadhd
03-15-16, 09:18 PM
Free play is instinctual. All mammals including humans play.







^

mildadhd
03-15-16, 10:03 PM
The raw urge to play is a genetic primary social emotional behavior.






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mildadhd
03-15-16, 10:33 PM
We don't feel like playing when distressed.






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Cyllya
03-16-16, 01:18 AM
When you post things like this on an ADHD forum, it carries the unspoken implication that it'll help with kids' ADHD specifically, especially since you put it in the "Diagnosis and treatment" section. I think this philosophy is good for all kids, especially since "traditional" "discipline" tends to ignore any kind of psychology knowledge and also be just plain mean (and sometimes illegal) but it's not a treatment for ADHD.

Nowadays, a lot of parents are starting to think, "Hmm, maybe using violence against my kid is unethical?" but if they just do the same things their own parents did but with all the spankings replaced by time-outs, the results aren't great. So articles like this are good.

It sounds like the more "play"-related stuff is going to be in part 2 of this article, and this is just background. There's not much new in this part, so if anyone wants more info along the same lines, here are some terms to Google. (This forum seems to have some strict link rules, which is why I'm not posting links.)

Natural Child Project
Gentle Discipline
Playful Parenting
How to talk so kids will listen & listen so kids will talk (book title)

I agree on some level what the underlying message regarding discipline. The issue that piqued my mind was that one section that talks about the inherent almost instinct-like ways that problem behavior relates to the child. In the link you provided, the author talks about how if those 5 things were corrected there would be no need for discipline. I dont see how you can correct or solve something that seems to be genetic or hard-wired into the child. How can you use plays as a way to correct something instinctive and does instinct even be something that could be corrected?

I also wonder if we can use the term discipline in regards to correcting behavior. I guess I view discipline when it comes to "problem" kids as something that requires negative messages or that discipline is a must physically to correct the unwanted behavior?

Am I making sense?
Sometimes the word discipline is used to describe learning a skill, like discipline for say, piano lessons. Like, "it takes discipline do something well or learning a skill- which means repetition, practicing and seeing results.

Maybe I am just thinking of discipline as a negative, or something that requires a change in behavior.
Im rambling though because my meds havent kicked in.
Overall I am in support of positive re-enforcement to work in correcting all behaviors.
I dont know about anyone else but being belittled, abused, invalidated or whatever other negative mentioned never helped me in correcing behaviors.

Yeah, don't look at this sort of thing as a proposed alternative to giving your kids EF coaching and medication. Look at it as a proposed alternative to bossing your kid around and getting violent when they displease you. I think the parts of the article about "maturity" could also be described as "don't give your kid unrealistic commands and then get all pissy when they fail to obey!" which also applies to kids with extra problems caused by ADHD.

Discipline is supposed to mean teach/guide/train. I think it's one of those words that mean something different in parent lingo (e.g. parents say "listen" when they mean "obey," and "consequence" when they mean "punishment," and "stranger" when they mean... I still don't know what parents mean when they say "stranger," except it's not what's in the dictionary).

sarahsweets
03-16-16, 02:43 AM
Holy cow,its like my response wasnt even seen in this thread.:scratch:

mildadhd
03-16-16, 08:28 AM
In my experience a playful approach to discipline is geared by nature for all children, especially for treating hypersensitive children with ADHD.

Everyone seems to agree the approach is good. So I am not sure what they are disagreeing about when it comes to ADHD?

I wanted to post a few facts about play in general. I will explain more specifically how playful approach helps hypersensitive children and families, in my next post.






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daveddd
03-16-16, 10:37 PM
In my experience a playful approach to discipline is geared by nature for all children, especially for treating hypersensitive children with ADHD.

Everyone seems to agree the approach is good. So I am not sure what they are disagreeing about when it comes to ADHD?

I wanted to post a few facts about play in general. I will explain more specifically how playful approach helps hypersensitive children and families, in my next post.






>

as opposed to irrelevant , these things may be especially relevant for some children that go on to develop ADHD

acdc01
03-16-16, 10:38 PM
Maybe I haven't read enough info on this approach , but it feels a little too simplistic to me.

My niece gets way too hyper when she has too much fun playing. She becomes very disobedient cause the play makes her too excited and she wants to continue doing whatever she wants.

Feels to a better approach would be to just make sure they feel loved by you and that they love you in return. Make sure they see you respect them so they have good self esteem. Keep them happy. And make sure you don't give them too much or too little stimulation.

If they are having too much fun, they'll lose control and if they aren't having enough fun, they will act out as well. Keeping emotions from spiraling out of control is key.

daveddd
03-16-16, 10:40 PM
Maybe I haven't read enough info on this approach , but it feels a little too simplistic to me.

My niece gets way too hyper when she has too much fun playing. She becomes very disobedient cause the play makes her too excited and she wants to continue doing whatever she wants.

Feels to a better approach would be to just make sure they feel loved by you and that they love you in return. Make sure they see you respect them so they have good self esteem. Keep them happy. And make sure you don't give them too much or too little stimulation.

If they are having too much fun, they'll lose control and if they aren't having enough fun, they will act out as well. Keeping emotions from spiraling out of control is key.

excellent points

though, points that may be difficult for a parent with ADHD themselves

daveddd
03-16-16, 10:44 PM
https://books.google.com/books?id=4Rw5Fj7rIRMC&printsec=frontcover&dq=play+therapy+ADHD&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiZq4L92MbLAhVDPj4KHSVKDCgQ6AEINTAA#v=on epage&q=play%20therapy%20ADHD&f=false


play therapy in ADHD while acknowledging differences

mildadhd
03-17-16, 09:45 PM
Sarahsweets

Sorry, I should have pointed out that I sometimes like to wait a day or more, after reading other members posts to let my brain unconsciously figure things before I reply. Blame my areas of immature delayed development. Medication helps older people who have moderate to severe ADHD.
Thank you and other members for your interest in this thread discussion so far. If I haven't answered all your questions, i would appreciate your remindfullness.





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mildadhd
03-17-16, 10:06 PM
There are lots of topics I would like to discuss related to the opening post and members posts topics over time. I like to keep things simple. I appreciate people's patients.

What I am recommending is supervised uninforcement as the primary form of discipline for all children from birth, especially children suspected of being born with a ADHD temperament.








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mildadhd
03-17-16, 10:21 PM
Twenty-five minutes of supervised uninforcement with a primary caregiver a day. At least.







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Stevuke79
03-17-16, 10:34 PM
as opposed to irrelevant , these things may be especially relevant for some children that go on to develop ADHD

I agree.

I think the 'causes of adhd' addressed are particularly relevant to an adhd child. They may apply to all children but some of them are precisely the challenges that are even harder with adhd.

Great find mildadhd!!

Cyllya
03-17-16, 11:36 PM
Maybe I haven't read enough info on this approach , but it feels a little too simplistic to me.

My niece gets way too hyper when she has too much fun playing. She becomes very disobedient cause the play makes her too excited and she wants to continue doing whatever she wants.

Feels to a better approach would be to just make sure they feel loved by you and that they love you in return. Make sure they see you respect them so they have good self esteem. Keep them happy. And make sure you don't give them too much or too little stimulation.

If they are having too much fun, they'll lose control and if they aren't having enough fun, they will act out as well. Keeping emotions from spiraling out of control is key.

What you called a better approach is already listed in the article, isn't it? Mostly the second cause, but also related to the third cause. Here's the second one again:

A second major cause of problem behaviour is a lack of right relationship with the adult in charge.
Children must be deeply attached and in a state of trustful dependence in order to have a deep and systemic desire to be good. When this attachment is lacking, children will instinctively resist and oppose when they feel coerced. The term for this is counterwill. This kind of problem behaviour cannot be addressed through discipline; in fact, discipline will make it worse. The appropriate question to ask is how to develop the kind of relationship in which children naturally want to be good. If that underlying desire were there and we made sure to safeguard this sacred trust, there would certainly be less need for discipline.

(I feel like it's worth noting that counterwill is kind of inevitable. There's a developmental stage around age three where kids first start to really develop the capacity for counterwill, and they will kind of go overboard with it. But otherwise, I agree with everything he's saying here. Becoming your kid's enemy will surely only make everything worse, but "traditional" parenting revolves around parent-as-enemy model.)

Even though it's called playful discipline, the article didn't involve play much. (It's not suggesting that you just let your kid only play all the time.) There may be more of that in the second half?

The article is the first half of a brief overview to a very huge and detailed topic.

Everyone seems to agree the approach is good. So I am not sure what they are disagreeing about when it comes to ADHD?

The part I disagree with is that you're claiming this is an ADHD treatment. (I don't know if you meant to claim that, but since you're posting this in the treatment section of an ADHD forum, it's inherently an implied statement unless you say otherwise.)

By analogy, it's like if you posted an article which basically says, "Hey, maybe we should give kids food as opposed to starving them to death! [insert a list of food sources of major vitamins]" Well, obviously I think that's correct, kids need food, starving your kid is a horrible thing that you shouldn't do. But food is not going to cure ADHD.

acdc01
03-17-16, 11:55 PM
What you called a better approach is already listed in the article, isn't it? Mostly the second cause, but also related to the third cause. Here's the second one again.

I mostly agree with the articles causes of problems and I agree that punishment is usually not the answer. It's as you say though, they barely explain their solution besides calling it the play approach. I was just trying to say that play isn't the only solution (in fact too much can cause problems too) and shouldn't be the central focus. Instead, you should focus on understanding the causes and apply multiple tools/solutions (including play) to fix them.

Treating the kid with respect, being loving to the child, injecting fun into boring tasks and transitioning the kids slowly when they are super excited - all those are solutions beyond play. I feel like part of the reason why they chose the name "play approach" is just cause it's a catchy title that might attract more supporters. It just doesn't encompass everything to me.

daveddd
03-18-16, 03:53 PM
What you called a better approach is already listed in the article, isn't it? Mostly the second cause, but also related to the third cause. Here's the second one again:

A second major cause of problem behaviour is a lack of right relationship with the adult in charge.
Children must be deeply attached and in a state of trustful dependence in order to have a deep and systemic desire to be good. When this attachment is lacking, children will instinctively resist and oppose when they feel coerced. The term for this is counterwill. This kind of problem behaviour cannot be addressed through discipline; in fact, discipline will make it worse. The appropriate question to ask is how to develop the kind of relationship in which children naturally want to be good. If that underlying desire were there and we made sure to safeguard this sacred trust, there would certainly be less need for discipline.

(I feel like it's worth noting that counterwill is kind of inevitable. There's a developmental stage around age three where kids first start to really develop the capacity for counterwill, and they will kind of go overboard with it. But otherwise, I agree with everything he's saying here. Becoming your kid's enemy will surely only make everything worse, but "traditional" parenting revolves around parent-as-enemy model.)

Even though it's called playful discipline, the article didn't involve play much. (It's not suggesting that you just let your kid only play all the time.) There may be more of that in the second half?

The article is the first half of a brief overview to a very huge and detailed topic.



The part I disagree with is that you're claiming this is an ADHD treatment. (I don't know if you meant to claim that, but since you're posting this in the treatment section of an ADHD forum, it's inherently an implied statement unless you say otherwise.)

By analogy, it's like if you posted an article which basically says, "Hey, maybe we should give kids food as opposed to starving them to death! [insert a list of food sources of major vitamins]" Well, obviously I think that's correct, kids need food, starving your kid is a horrible thing that you shouldn't do. But food is not going to cure ADHD.



i think saying something isnt going to cure adhd doesnt mean much

Most think adhd is due to a predispotion that somehow interferes with developing self regulation. ( the vicarious learning part in barkleys. EFs and how they work is interesting)

They think the developmental period has a big influence on severity and comorbids

So if something like this is the difference between someone who loses their keys a lot and struggles in higher learning. And someone who drops out of school , uses drugs , has rage issues and the more severe symptoms of adhd

Was it worth it? Is that treatment?

daveddd
03-18-16, 04:04 PM
"The part I disagree with is that you're claiming this is an ADHD treatment. (I don't know if you meant to claim that, but since you're posting this in the treatment section of an ADHD forum, it's inherently an implied statement unless you say otherwise.)"

By analogy, it's like if you posted an article which basically says, "Hey, maybe we should give kids food as opposed to starving them to death! [insert a list of food sources of major vitamins]" Well, obviously I think that's correct, kids need food, starving your kid is a horrible thing that you shouldn't do. But food is not going to cure ADHD.


meds take up most the treatment section which is fine,but meds also do not cure ADHD

that analogy really doesn't apply at all

mildadhd
03-18-16, 08:37 PM
Secure supervised un-inforcement, makes re-inforcement more enjoyable for everyone, especially people born with more hyperreactive affective temperaments.




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daveddd
03-18-16, 10:14 PM
Secure supervised un-inforcement, makes re-inforcement more enjoyable for everyone, especially people born with more hyperreactive affective temperaments.




<

do you have a good understanding about how therapeutic play actually can work to learn emotional regulation, and why?

Lunacie
03-19-16, 12:23 PM
We've been taking my granddaughter to a therapist who does wonderful play therapy with her.

I've learned a few things from observing, but it's not something I'm good at doing myself.

For me, it's nowhere near an intuitive thing to do with children. It's probably great for those who can though.

mildadhd
03-19-16, 01:13 PM
I am fascinated by the fact that supervised free play is a treatment for a ADHD temperament, years before the question of a ADHD and medication is even an option.

Play: Free play, in which children develop their own activities, including rough-and-tumble activities that, as the term play implies, involves physical activity such as running, jumping, play fighting, and wrestling, are increasingly recognized as essential components of a child’s development. Both human and animal studies have provided evidence that periods of play improve social skills, impulse inhibition and attention (Panksepp, 2007; Pellis et al., 2010) and result in specific neurochemical and dendritic changes in many neurons (Bell et al., 2010; Panksepp, 2008), especially in those brain areas in which ADHD children are deficient. Therefore, long-term provision of more opportunities for physical play may be an effective, non-medicinal therapy for reducing some of the disruptive behaviors of ADHD and facilitating brain development in children diagnosed with ADHD.


http://scholarpedia.org/article/ADHD_and_Play







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Mantaray14
03-19-16, 05:35 PM
I think this can be crucial information for those of us parenting ADD children. The part about the bonding and trust with caregivers and also the reasons behind the behavior (demands that the child is not ready for, immaturity and attachment needs). How the caregiver perceives the behaviour determines how they respond.

I remember trying the traditional disciplinary approach when my son just entered school. I was getting vibes from others that his behavior stemmed from lax parenting and didn't know why this was all happening. I got very strict with him and there was lots of yelling and fighting. Well that just made things worse and he started to develop oppositional disorder. Our baby who was the happiest thing on earth, started to become a different person as soon as demands he couldn't meet were thrust upon him. A dark side to his personalty started to emerge and it was a real eye opener for me and a scary time for our family.

We decided to get help at that point. Granted it still took us a few years to sort stuff out, nothing helped my parenting more than just reading everything under the sun. Some of the books touched upon this stuff like Gabor mate and some others. We found a great therapist who advocates for him and that has helped too. What mildadhd has posted was very concise, Ive never seen the info presented that way. I'm interested in learning more....

Lunacie
03-19-16, 07:38 PM
I think this can be crucial information for those of us parenting ADD children. The part about the bonding and trust with caregivers and also the reasons behind the behavior (demands that the child is not ready for, immaturity and attachment needs). How the caregiver perceives the behaviour determines how they respond.

I remember trying the traditional disciplinary approach when my son just entered school. I was getting vibes from others that his behavior stemmed from lax parenting and didn't know why this was all happening. I got very strict with him and there was lots of yelling and fighting. Well that just made things worse and he started to develop oppositional disorder. Our baby who was the happiest thing on earth, started to become a different person as soon as demands he couldn't meet were thrust upon him. A dark side to his personalty started to emerge and it was a real eye opener for me and a scary time for our family.

We decided to get help at that point. Granted it still took us a few years to sort stuff out, nothing helped my parenting more than just reading everything under the sun. Some of the books touched upon this stuff like Gabor mate and some others. We found a great therapist who advocates for him and that has helped too. What mildadhd has posted was very concise, Ive never seen the info presented that way. I'm interested in learning more....

My childhood wasn't horrible or harsh, but I definately felt shamed because I wasn't meeting the expectations that I was too immature to meet, didn't have the maturity that my classmates did.

Because I was the oldest girl with younger siblings, I was expected to grow up and help out in ways I wasn't mature enough to do.

mildadhd
03-23-16, 10:23 PM
..Specifically in managing ADD, the problem is to introduce more play--more physically unstructured time, more freely flowing creative expression into the classroom, not less.

-Gabor Mate M.D., "Scattered". Chapter: "ADD In The Classroom", P 217.


I have noticed my step son and I usually communicated really well after a period of un-inforced free play.

My step son and often fulfilled attunement relationship needs on our daily walks, to and from the park.

Supervised free play promotes attachment and attunement.




>

TheGreatKing
03-23-16, 10:32 PM
Holy cow,its like my response wasnt even seen in this thread.:scratch:
I saw sara!
:yes::D

mildadhd
03-23-16, 10:40 PM
So far..


The most common reason for problem behaviour is immaturity.


-Supervised free play promotes maturity.


A second major cause of problem behaviour is a lack of right relationship with the adult in charge.


-Supervised free play promotes our attachment and attunement relationships, essential for healthy emotional and cognitive development.




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mildadhd
03-25-16, 06:52 PM
Why does a PLAY urge exist?

It probably enables the young to learn nonsocial physical skills like hunting, foraging, and so on.

It is also surely important for acquiring many social capacities, especially nascent aggressive, courting, sexual, and in some species, competitive and perhaps even parenting skills.

It may be an essential force for the construction of the many higher functions of our social brains.

Playful activities may help young animals learn to identify individuals with whom they can develop cooperative relationships and to know who they should avoid.

They surely learn through play when they can dominate social interactions and when they should gracefully disengage, submit or accept defeat.

Play can also have a darker side.

When animals play, they may learn whom they can bully and who can bully them.

In short, the brain's PLAY networks may help stitch individuals into the stratified social fabric that will be the staging ground for their lives, and these networks may also prepare them to handle various unexpected events that life will surely throw their way (Spinka et al., 2001).





The PLAY urge is both robust and fragile.

It is fragile because a great number of environmental manipulations can reduce play--including all events that evoke negative emotional states such as anger, fear, pain and separation distress..





Panksepp/Biven; "The Archaeology of Mind", Chapter: "PLAYful Dreamlike Circuits of the Brain", P 354-355.


"..a great number of environmental manipulations can reduce play.."

Observing how a child consistently plays, or not, can help primary caregiver, family and doctors recognize any consistently abnormal unhealthy internal and external emotional distresses, in the environments.

It's important to discuss with your family doctor any consistently abnormal circumstances that consistently reduce a child's urge to play.

And promote emotional environments that encourage the child's own instinctual urge to play.



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mildadhd
04-03-16, 11:28 PM
I think this can be crucial information for those of us parenting ADD children. The part about the bonding and trust with caregivers and also the reasons behind the behavior (demands that the child is not ready for, immaturity and attachment needs). How the caregiver perceives the behaviour determines how they respond.

I remember trying the traditional disciplinary approach when my son just entered school. I was getting vibes from others that his behavior stemmed from lax parenting and didn't know why this was all happening. I got very strict with him and there was lots of yelling and fighting. Well that just made things worse and he started to develop oppositional disorder. Our baby who was the happiest thing on earth, started to become a different person as soon as demands he couldn't meet were thrust upon him. A dark side to his personalty started to emerge and it was a real eye opener for me and a scary time for our family.

We decided to get help at that point. Granted it still took us a few years to sort stuff out, nothing helped my parenting more than just reading everything under the sun. Some of the books touched upon this stuff like Gabor mate and some others. We found a great therapist who advocates for him and that has helped too. What mildadhd has posted was very concise, Ive never seen the info presented that way. I'm interested in learning more....

I have similar experience when I got more strict. A few times over the years I worried I was not being strict enough. I would worry the playful approach was to simple. But when I got more strict, like your experience, things always got worse, not better. What I learned was I need to more patient. What we needed along with a playful approach to disapline, was more time to mature.



T