Once upon a time, many, many years ago, there was a little princess named Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things (yes, the WHOLE name).
Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things was two and a half years old and was the brand new big sister of another little princess. Because her mom had been very sick while she was pregnant with the new baby, Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things was not yet potty trained.
Once her mom felt up to the challenge, after the baby was a month or so old, the “training” began. Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things was very stubborn, as you might expect from a princess with such a pretentious name. The “training” didn’t get very far. Though her mother, the Queen, knew that Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things was more than capable of accomplishing such a task, the little princess simply refused.
It seemed that Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things was determined NOT to go potty when and where her mom wanted her to…simply because she was stubborn.
The Queen and the Princess butted heads. There was quite a bit of contention between the Queen and the little Princess. Potty training became a conflict that was about to tear the kingdom apart. In fact, the queen was about to pull her hair out in frustration, but she decided, instead, to forget about potty training for a while.
Fast forward a few months to Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things’ 3rd birthday. Christmas season was also underway (it was that way every year for the poor Princess) and all that Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things really wanted for either holiday was her very own Barbie Doll.
The King, however, had different ideas. Raised in a household of all Princes, he viewed Barbie as a purely evil toy, and didn’t want any of them in his kingdom. Poor Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things. Though she received many wonderful gifts that Christmas and for her birthday, a Barbie was not among her gifts, and she was terribly sad.
One of the Princess’ tutors heard of her sad holiday without the toy that she really wanted, and decided to stop by the Palace one day with a small offering. When the King saw the Barbie in the tutor’s hand, he was not happy.
The Queen tried to convince the King that Barbies were not inherently evil, and they eventually came to a compromise. Together, the King and Queen developed the “Barbie Incentive Program” and the Princess was thrilled. Her new Barbie was placed on top of the royal piano, where everyone would see it throughout the day. A chart was made, and a deal was struck. If Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things could use the potty and stay dry for 5 consecutive days, her reward would be the Barbie doll.
The entire kingdom felt the change. Suddenly, going potty was something the Princess wanted to do. She was motivated, not by the hounding of her mother, but by a goal she had control over, and something she wanted very badly. Instead of arguing and punishments, the kingdom rang with praises and happy clapping.
The Princess stayed dry, perfected the royal art of using the bathroom, and lived happily ever after.
If you haven’t guessed, the story of Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things happened to me. In fact, my oldest daughter really DID declare that her name was Madame Butterfly World of the Pretty Things (and insist that we call her that, unaltered). I was a young mother and this was my first experience with positive parenting feedback.
What is Positive Parenting?
The basic idea of a positive parenting program is to reward good behavior by children, while giving minimal or no attention to a child’s bad behavior. Like almost all people, kids want incentives to make the right choices. Kid Pointz has printable kids charts to use with your kids (you know…if you don’t want to use a Barbie doll like me).
I wrote this post as an entry in the Search for the Next Kid Pointz Blogger. Although this is a compensated post, this story is 100% a product of my own experiences.
Barbie image from Wikimedia: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Barbie_1959_First_Editions.jpg
© 2012, Lolli. All rights reserved.