Catholic book recommendations – discipline strategies

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  johnson8 9 years, 9 months ago.

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    Hi Moms!

    I have a 19 month old son, and my husband and I are really grappling to find our parenting approach.

    We are both very easy, laid-back people – and our son’s temperament (as most 19 month olds I’m sure) is very high energy, very passionate, very robust – and very tiresome! He is our pride and joy, but we are having a very difficult time finding our discipline approach, and we realize that at this age he is in desperate needs of limits.

    We try to stick to rules, about ten of them, examples being “no biting, no screaming, no throwing, no climbing on furniture” etc. We enforce our discipline with time outs, but we are questioning their effectiveness for his temperament style.

    In addition, my temperament clashes with his in that I am very irritable, impatient – and I can’t stand whining! I am in the process of finding a Catholic Family Counselor in the area to help me work on my “stress buttons” but I also would like to learn about some good books from a Catholic perspective. If you have any recommendations, I’d be so grateful!

    Thanks for bearing with me and reading!

    Many blessings to you and your families!




    I strongly recommend Dr Ray Guarendi. You can listen to him on Ave Maria radio. He has several books out and you can get to his website via Ave Maria radio (

    I can relate to you especially with the impatience! God has blessed me with 3 gifts to help me improve up on it and they are 4yrs next month, 2yrs next month and 9 months. My husband and I find positive rewards, removal of favorite items for a time and medication for my postpardum has been the best treatment. I also try the ‘I can’t hear you if you are whining’ and while it isn’t full proof, it does work often.

    Best of luck!



    My son is 18 months old and sounds just about like your son. He’s not afraid of anything and has energy like you wouldn’t believe. I recommend reading “The Discipline Book – everything you need to know to have a better-behaved child from birth to age ten” by William Sears and Martha Sears. He’s a Doctor and she’s a nurse with a big family and use christian parenting skills. Some examples of things I’ve done – he always takes the books off the shelf – I gave him his own shelf with his books. When he tries to get mommies books I gently say ‘no, mommies, these are your’s (his name.)’ I let him participate in helping take just the utensils out of the dishwasher and that’s it. Somethings you can’t though (always do that sort of things) – like the tv,vcr buttons. We firmly but gently so “no – not to play with.” He still goes after them every once in awhile, but always looks at us to see if we’re approving – we just say it over and over. He doesn’t understand completely at his age, but is getting the concept with certain things, like different cabinets, electrical cords, etc. There is no way I could do time out, my little guy wouldn’t understand. One more suggestion – someone told me when they are getting frustrated they say a Hail Mary out loud. I’ve been doing this, it distracts the child and helps you regroup when your about to scream. Good luck! 🙂




    ohmygosh…I’m having so much trouble with my 15 month old. He doesn’t listen what-so-ever! He used to listen to “no” and baby time outs…but, now it’s nothing, he tries climbing up on the bookshelves, shaking them…once a sharp object almost hit his eye. A few days ago, I started slapping his hand, to see if he would get the message. He does. Most of the time. But I don’t feel good slapping his hand. I think he is too young…but I just don’t know what else to do…I just ordered some Ray Guarendi books…I got a Steve Ray tape…but everything seems to be for older children. What to do with a 15 month old!

    Anyways, if anyone has any practical advice…I’m so frustrated at this point.


    My Ds is 19 months old and totally strong willed. Nothing like my 4 year old DS. He was (and still is) highly compliant, very safety-oriented, likes things in order, and wants to please his parents. We have spent a lot of time convincing him that he can be independent and urging him to try new things. My 19 month old is all about INDEPENDENCE!!!
    I guess it helps that my 4 year old doesn’t usually try things he knows are wrong, and when he sees DS doing something wrong he tries to re-direct him or tells us right away. We have to say “no” or “not for Parker” or “gentle, please” over and over again. Sometimes you just feel like a broken record. Ah, the age of discovery!!! I definitely think if you can nip it in the bud while they are 1, it makes the 2s a lot easier.

    Good luck to all. Lots of prayer and patience is my only advice!!!



    Dr. Ray is fantastic! I must also recommend his books. Also, log on to and listen to him answer call in parenting problems between 11:00 a.m. and noon (central time).

    As for advice… consistency is key. Follow through essential. Discipline a must. Dr. Ray’s advice is fantastic and I think you can even listen to some of his ‘talks’ on I will check on the sites and make sure I posted the correct one.

    Praying for moms, everyday! We have a very important ‘job’, don’t we? 😀

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