A tough New Jersey cop, Teddy Sr. (43) and his wife Nancy (39) find they’re in over their heads when dealing with 4-year-old triplets: Teddy Jr., Milo, and Giada and their 11-year-old older brother, Timmy.
The parents think that time-outs don’t work, so Nancy’s method of discipline is to lock the kids in their bedroom while they scream, and Teddy Sr.’s method is to surrender.
Bayville, New Jersey. Jo watched her introductory video. We meet Teddy and Nancy DeMott. They have four children: Timmy (11) Teddy, Milo and Giada (4-year-old triplets). The family suffered chaos because of the triplets throwing and drawing on walls with crayons. During the day, Ted is out of the house working as a police officer and Nancy took care of the children. We watch video of the children leaving the house. Nancy voices over that she gave up on a traditional time out and instead resorted to locking her children in their rooms.
At night, Nancy worked, while Ted lost total control. The 4-year-olds go crazy and Jo screamed at her DVD player like America often screamed at their TVs at these families. The oldest son, Timmy got no alone time and lashed out at the younger children. The parents were at a breaking point by the time Jo arrived.
Jo arrived for observation and while the kids seemed nice enough with greetings, all hell broke loose almost instantly. During craft time, something that should have been a good creative outlet, the kids weren't having fun at all. It seemed like the only one even trying was Giada. Of course, Nancy screamed at Giada for incorrectly using the glue stick and Jo pointed out that she's not being supportive at all. She locked the children in their rooms and Jo pointed out that it taught nothing to the children.
Nancy then let the kids outside to play, but she wasn't around supervising the children. Teddy disappeared which upset Jo because their house was between a forest and an open road. Teddy was still at the play area. Jo was very upset about the lack of supervision, higher in her anger level than she normally has been this season. The triplets all try to overpower Timmy, but the parents knew that Timmy also wanted attention and knew that Timmy was lashing out. Ted got emotional explaining Timmy's lack of attention and his lack of effort.
At night, Nancy pointed out that Ted didn't do baths; he explained that it was too stressful. In her voiceover, Jo proceeded to flip out. Right after Nancy left, Ted had no control whatsoever of their children. Jo watched as kids ran around and peed in toy trucks; they also wanted to sniff the pee. The kids then proceeded to throw toys at him. Ted then screamed at the kids to go to bed, then Milo cries.
Soon it was time to counsel with the parents. Jo pointed out that there should be safer precautions about the front and back doors. The parents were pushovers that didn't guide the kids correctly. Ted should know how to discipline the children since he was a police officer. Jo pointed out that Nancy wasn't doing anything correctly. During craft time, Giada wasn't reacting correctly since Nancy didn't put any effort in, already expecting disappointment. As for Ted, he felt aloof about being an officer. He couldn't transition from work to home. Jo pointed out that he needed to focus on the right things at the right time. Timmy has resentment, but needs a strong father as well. Ted wanted a true father/son relationship.
Teaching began with Jo first pointing out that she wanted to make sure that all the doors had locks. Ted was upset about putting a hole in an expensive door; Jo was upset that he would rather lose a child than tarnish his door. Jo proceeded to scold him with lap running and screaming. Afterward, Jo created a rule chart that the parents filled out. They then proceeded to try to explain the rules to the kids; none of the kids were hearing it. Milo then proceeded to cry, upset about the rules; Jo knew that the kids had to start reacting to finally getting some form of discipline. Jo introduced a timeout bench and a chart of the rules, which looked like a police badge. Of course Ted had his doubts.
The next afternoon, one of the triplets drew on the bathroom wall while others splashed water on the floor. Jo sat the kids down and had a heart to heart with the kids trying to get the kids to tell the truth. The triplets admitted to their wrongdoings and got time out all at one time. Jo then talked to the parents; she wanted to make sure that the triplets were thinking about making the right decisions. After four minutes (one minute per year of age), Jo then followed the rest of the steps and the kids apologized to Jo.
During dinner, Milo was still being disrespectful and Ted was letting Milo walk all over him. Jo pointed out that as a cop he would do the right thing, but at home the kids overpowered him. Ted had a glaze and wasn't there; Jo sniffed Ted and realized that he was drinking. She scolded him, but Ted was still totally glazed looking at Jo. Jo was beyond upset.
The still glazed Ted stared at Jo and made a promise not to drink. The following day, Jo decided to talk to professionals and got Ted a number for someone for counseling.
Jo wanted to make sure that Timmy and Ted wrote lists of things they wanted to do together. Timmy was a bit unsure, so Jo talked to Ted to make sure that the two need to connect and bring him in. Ted knew that he didn't put enough effort so he had a talk with Timmy and they hugged. Later in the evening, Jo wanted to make sure that Ted could do a bath. He failed at using shampoo and at wiping the children. Ted then proceeded to complain about pain, but he did a decent job. Jo gave the couple a list of things she wanted the family to make sure they were doing well.
Seven days have passed and Jo returned to watch the tapes. Firstly, Ted had issues with the kids with bath time. The kids were running around like crazy, but he was progressing. Ted spent time with just Timmy and the two looked like they were having fun (even though Giada was in the background). The two started to bond. In the next clip, Milo disappeared, only to be found in the pantry. Nancy tried to discipline Teddy; she eventually put Teddy in time out and went through the steps. Teddy needed eye contact, but it's something that they could work on.
Ted went to talk to a counselor, while Nancy had playtime with the kids. Within five minutes, Teddy was being rude and refused to share the spinner with his siblings. Nancy tried to make sure that Teddy was looking directly at her, but he was pursing his lips so Jo and Nancy told him to go on time out. While he was provoking Nancy, he eventually stopped being rude and did a good job.
In the evening, Ted returned from the therapy and he felt comfortable. Nancy was touched because she knew he would be a better person if he had counseling. Jo was very happy with the steps the family took and proud of Ted. Jo hugged all the children and the parents. Nancy and Ted knew that there would be a lot of change after Jo’s arrival.
- Teddy DeMott Sr., 43
- Nancy DeMott, 39
- Timmy, 11
- Teddy Jr., Milo and Giada, 4
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