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Ask Grandma Maggie

Parenting & Childcare Advice
Peggy Moss (1933-2014), also known as Grandma Maggie, penned a parenting column on this site for many years. Back by popular demand, we are republishing the column, sharing with you the best of Grandma Maggie’s parenting and childcare advice.
Unfortunately Grandma Maggie is no longer able to take questions.

Can I spank my kids if they’re out of control?
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I have 3 kids with 1 more on the way and I am 34, my oldest kid being 10. I have twin 5 year old girls and they are ALWAYS out of control — do I spank them or what?

Please write back.

Kaylah

Dear Friend,

I don’t believe in spanking children, mainly because I see it as being unfair to the child with someone older bullying someone younger. It also rarely changes behavior. The best way to twin-948721_640change behavior is to praise behavior that is acceptable. Parents think that disciplining children consists of yelling and punishing kids for unacceptable behavior, when in reality it is pointing out firmly and gently unacceptable behavior, having consequences for that behavior, and praising kids for the good job of changing to acceptable behavior. You might want to look into a parenting group for support and ideas on disciplining problems. Another idea is to find a parenting group for parents of multiples. These can be very helpful and no one gives advice better than someone else who also walks in your shoes, and that would be other parents of twins.

I wish you the best.
GM