Ginger Zee on the Most Effective Discipline for Kids: ‘Disappointment and Silence’ Are Deadly

05/23/2016 at 03:00 PM ET

In the newest edition of PEOPLE’s Mom Talk, four celebrity moms open up about the different disciplining techniques they’ve used on their children.

And though Dancing with the Stars finalist Ginger Zee‘s son Adrian Benjamin may be only 5 months old, the new mom is already brainstorming a few tricks of the trade when it comes to what the most effective way of disciplining might be for her.

“Disappointment and silence,” agrees Zee when Orange Is the New Black actresses Alysia Reiner and Selenis Leyva share how the silent treatment has worked in their favors for their daughters.

Ginger Zee Nicole Snooki Polizzi Mom Talk

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“I have actually given myself a timeout when [7-year-old daughter Livia] did throw a tantrum and I was like, ‘Okay, I’m no longer able to be a good mom,’ ” explains Reiner. ” ‘I’m going into the bathroom for three minutes to calm myself down because I can’t parent effectively right now.’ ”

Reiner, 45, adds that Livia ended up calming herself down due to how scared she was to see her mom so out of character.

“Silence is deadly,” agrees Leyva, 43, who is mom to 13-year-old daughter Alina.

“I just started [the silent treatment] with my daughter [Giovanna Marie, 20 months] and my son [Lorenzo Dominic, 3½], because they can get really emotional and upset, throwing themselves on the ground,” Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, 28, adds. “The more you pay attention to that [kind of behavior], the worse it gets.”

And so far, the nonchalant demeanor is working for Polizzi — she just walks into the kitchen and waits for their tantrums to end.

“At points I’m just like, ‘I’m done, I’m over you. You’re dramatic. You just won an Oscar, so calm down,’ ” she says, while the other women laugh.

Jen Juneau


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Showing 13 comments

Cindy on

I totally agree, never laid one hand on my seven children. I never yelled either. So when I did get upset it hit them right in their heart strings and if I used the D word they bawled..It never made sense to me to strike something I was supposed to love and protect and also teach them when you don’t agree you hit..not the right message in my opinion.

Lux on

Never silence. Never, ever the silent treatment. It’s true that not talking is better than yelling, but just to a certain point. Then it becomes abusive whether you are doing it to an adult or particularly a child. The vulnerability and fear this causes is not well endured by children, said a child brought with the silent treatment. Evil and cruel.

suzi on

She has a newborn, how would she now what effective discipline would be!

Tieraney on

Omg Lux, you need to get a life.. Walking into another room for a few minutes and not giving in to a child’s tantrum is hardly abuse. I’m sure these women aren’t ignoring their children or giving their kids the silent treatment for days and weeks on end. Sometimes it’s best just to walk away and let everyone cool down.

Out of context? on

The more we hear from Ginger the less I want to even listen to her about something as simple as the weather forecast. Planning on disciplining your 5 month old who might just well be a little sweetheart seems premature. In what context would she ignore the child? When he has actually done something wrong or just when her own feelings are hurt? As we saw with her last statement on anorexia the silent treatment wouldn’t have worked on her, she needed to intrude into the lives of dying patients to get the message. Will she try to scare her son straight before or after the silent, disappointed treatment?

LizLemon on

When the newscasters become the news, we have a problem. I liked Ginger before she started promoting herself, whining all the time, and handing out parenting advise when her baby can’t even sit up yet, but since being on DWTS, she has worn me out.

Dutch on

I am astonished this is an article, please don’t just ignore your kids. Yelling at them or being agro isn’t the right approach either unless the child is putting itself in danger I suppose ,but come on (silent treatment?). The children referred to in the article are already going to have emotional problems please don’t add to it

Death be not proud on

This is the second time an article about Ginger is featured using the word/phrase death. In the anorexia article the mom was putting on a show about death and pointing out dying patients to Ginger, now in referencing her own son silence/disappointment are deadly. Ginger seems to have the emotional maturity of a stunted girl who suffered from anorexia just long enough to alter her own limbic system/amygdala development.

Jen on

Lux makes a decent point. I know from experience. My mother used the silent treatment regularly throughout my childhood and I will tell you that the abandonment I felt every time was beyond painful. It has negatively effected our relationship to this day. It is absolutely ok to walk away from a tantrum and refuse to engage, but that is not the silent treatment.

KrM on

Well, I’ve raised two beautiful, successful daughters. And if they were ever in the middle of the floor throwing a tantrum, they got two swaps on the behind and were sent to THEIR room, I certainly didn’t go to another room to calm down because of their bad behavior. Just like the other day at the grocery store with my oldest daughter, we saw a kid in the middle of the floor throwing a fit because his mom wouldn’t buy him cookies. She turned to me and said thanks mom for raising us right.


OMG! Since when did Ginger Zee become a expert on children. She choose to do Dancing with The Star instead of spending the precious time that most new mothers do bonding with their child. The fifteen minutes of your fame is over Ginger. SO TAKE YOURSELF AND YOUR ATTENTION SEEKING HUSBAND AND GO AWAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Gingerisgoofy on

Yeah another celebrity mom whose instantly an expert parent!

Kathy on

And they think that is a good idea? Sick.