Parental Punishments Essay

Parental Punishments Essay-31
MANY PARENTS WONDER WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO teach their children discipline.But the majority of those who have asked my opinions on discipline have spoken of it as something that parents impose on children, rather than something that parents instill in them.

MANY PARENTS WONDER WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO teach their children discipline.But the majority of those who have asked my opinions on discipline have spoken of it as something that parents impose on children, rather than something that parents instill in them.

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In the end the parent's goal—to eliminate bad language from the child's vocabulary—is rarely achieved.

Instead, the punishment serves to convince the child that although the parent is very much concerned with overt behavior, he is completely uninterested in whatever annoyance compelled the child to use bad language.

Later, parental criticism or punishment may convince him that the price he has to pay for his act is too high. When we tell a child that we disapprove of what he has done but are convinced that his intentions were good, our positive approach will make it relatively easy for him to listen to us and not close his mind in defense against what we have to say.

And while he still might not like our objecting, he will covet our good opinion of him enough to want to retain it, even if that entails a sacrifice.

Even if a child feels he has done wrong, he senses that there must be some better way to correct him than by inflicting physical or emotional pain.

When we experience painful or degrading punishment, most of us learn to avoid situations that lead to it; in this respect punishment is effective.

If we become emotional, as we are apt to do when we are upset about our child's undisciplined behavior and anxious about what it may foretell about his future, then we are not likely to speak with this soft voice of reason.

And when the child is upset by fear of our displeasure, not to mention when he is anxious about what we may do to him, then he is in no position to listen well, if at all, to this soft voice.

And when the child is old enough and able, he will try to use such force himself—for instance, punishing his parents by acting in ways most distressing to them.

Thus parents would be well advised to keep in mind Shakespeare's words: "They that have power to hurt and will do none ....

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