The Word "No"

Do you use the word "no" with your children, or have you replaced with "no" with another way to tell them to stop what they are doing?

My husband and I somehow ended up talking about using the word "no" with children this weekend.  The discussion was not about discipline, but actually about the word "no" itself.   I have some friends who, instead of saying "no," will use another phrase or sound to stop a particular type of behavior.

We have a dog who is occasionally very naughty.  Thus, "no" is a word we use in our house.  The question was whether we should use "no" directed at Lauren.  At seven months, she's clearly not old enough to know right from wrong.  However, she's getting quite mobile which puts her into situations where the temptation is to respond "no." 

I did a little searching on the subject, and read that parents and caregivers may wish to follow the word "no" up with what the proper behavor is.  One example I read said, if in a child is using scissors in an unsafe way, the best response is, "No, Johnny.  Scissors are for cutting paper."  Others recommend using the word "stop" instead of "no." 

What has worked for your families?

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  • by patty Location: greenville on Nov 8, 2010 at 12:39 PM
    Using "no" is perfectly ok....it depends on what is going on as to how you use it. No about a hot stove, and no to another cookie are different things. I was raised in the 50's and 60's. My parents (especially my mom) would say no, because I said so. No questions asked. I told my self, I would raise my kids to explain why I said no. Jenna listened, and was very good. Evan, being a boy, would always try for more!!
  • by Stephen Location: Washington on Nov 8, 2010 at 06:10 AM
    I've used "no" with all of mine. Normally it would be, as you said, a "No" followed by the proper behavior...but then I'm kinda old fashioned when it comes to raising kids.
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