My feeble attempt to change the rule didn't go over well. I said, "Honey, I asked you not to play and walk at the same time. If you do, I will have to take it away. If you fall and break it, we will never be able to play it again." It was a lame threat with no starting point, duration or finish. He was already doing the thing I was threatening against! I confused the threat with the safety warning and the parameters of each were unclear.
He came into the house, set the Ipad down, dropped to the floor face-down and wimpered. Here was my chance for Emotion Coaching! I said, "Oh honey, come here." He was a 'wet noodle' which made lifting him to the couch too tough. I sat on the floor beside him, "Come here, honey." Lifting him onto my lap was even too back-straining with the way he was intent on lying face down on the floor and avoiding my gaze and my touch. I said humorously, "Ok, I will lie with you." I laid next to him on the floor and said with as much compassion as I could muster, "Honey, did that hurt your feelings?" He whined louder, "Uh-huh." "Is it because I said you could never play the Ipad again?" "Uh-huh." "That would be really sad wouldn't it? I love to play the Ipad." "I do too!" he now let me hold him on my lap. "I'm so glad you didn't break it, because then we wouldn't be able to play it ever agian; it would be broken. That would be sad because I like to play it." "Me too," he now could look in my direction. I continued, "I have seen pictures of what Ipads look like when they get dropped and broken." His eyes got big, "Huh?" "Would you like to see a picture of what a broken one looks like?" "Yes!" "Ok, I will show you." We held hands as we walked to the computer and looked up broken Ipad pics. Episode over in less than five minutes.
Before Emotion Coaching? He would have sulked and eventually bawled for at least 30 minutes or more and possibly shouted, "I hate you!" I would have lectured him on why he shouldn't be upset. I would have recounted for him all the services I had provided for him that day and told him if he wanted more favors from me he needed to be happy. Lol!! I am so glad I now know better!!!! Whew!!!