Top positive review
91 people found this helpful
It really works!
on July 28, 2010
I can't say enough about this program. It works. It really, really works. I have four children ages 14 months to 7 1/2 years. It was our third child that brought us to our knees. He started the "terrible twos" at one and a half and didn't stop for two years until we started this program. A month before I found out about 123 Magic I told my husband, "we have to figure out how to parent/discipline this child because if we don't, he is the kind who can destroy a family and it won't be his fault (he's too young), it will be ours because we never figured out how to discipline him". We love our son very much but we had stopped enjoying him. Some days I was facing five terrible tantrums before lunch. And when I say tantrums, I mean he was getting himself so worked up that he would sometimes vomit all over himself. One therapist told us to do a "rescue hug" on him. Well, we did rescue hugs, sometimes for 45 minutes to almost no avail. It also wasn't realistic. I have three other children and I can't be doing a "rescue hug" for hours each day on just one child. I was in despair as to what to do when a counselor told me about 123 Magic. She told me that it would be easy to implement and that it would work. She was right. We have a different home and people who knew the before and after have been amazed.
In the video Dr. Phelan continually stresses that the two main keys to this program are 1)don't use too much emotion and 2)don't use too many words. When you watch the video it will make sense. He goes on to say that parents come up to him at conferences and will say that the program worked great for about six weeks and then quit working. He instructs that the program still works, it is just that the parents have gone back to using too much emotion and/or too many words. We found this to be entirely true. When a parent is used to nagging, lecturing, and yelling, it can be a hard habit to break. My husband and I did really well for the first six weeks or so and then somehow forgot these two main principles. Sure enough, the kids (especially the third-born) started acting worse. We have gotten back on track and it is working again. The goal as the months and years go by is that the children learn to internally monitor themselves.
In the video Dr. Phelan warns that about half of the kids will immediately comply with the program and about half will immediately test it. We figured that our third-born would immediately test and he did. We took courage, though, that in about ten days he would be through that. In fact, it probably took only about five. He is a much happier child now and we are a much happier family. If you have given up hope of finding a program that works, try this one. The beauty of it is that it works for ages 2-12 and all personality types. You don't have to figure out a different discipline for each child's age and personality.
Along with this video I bought the kids version of the book. I highly recommend to do that as well. We read the book to our three older kids and they were fascinated. And even though they still fight it sometimes, they really like the program because I'm not yelling or nagging much at all anymore. A few weeks ago my seven-year old and I were in a restaurant together. She saw a child acting up and she quietly said to me, "they should use 123 Magic." I asked her if she liked 123 Magic and why. She said, "because it gets kids to obey."