and punishment? It seems, that most of the advice given here is, to come down on a child even harder, when they don't obey or make repeat offenses. That this will give the best results and if it doesn't you must not be doing it right. What's interesting, is that I don't spank or use punishment at all. I decided this route early on, due to my own childhood. I was spanked maybe 6,7 times growing up and I was grounded a lot. I had things taken away, no contact with friends, no going anywhere and so forth. I feared my parents and never spoke up to them. I didn't have a very close relationship with them either. I lied a lot, due to fear. I also did many things behind their back. A lot of those things were dangerous and my way of coping with the punishment I recieved. I knew, when I became a parent, that I did not want this with my own children. It never made me feel good personlly, and it drove my relationship with my parents, to shit over time. I had this belief, that when I became a parent, I didn't want my kids to fear me, the way I feared my parents. I'm not a bad human as an adult. I care very much for people, do my best not to hurt and I'm dedicated to raising my kids. In some ways, I could say my parents did a very good job, but truth be told, is I do and practice very little, with my children, what my parents ever did to me. When my kids were little, I didn't do the greatest job. I didn't know what to do sometimes. After all, I knew what I didn't want to do, because of what my parents did to me, yet I didn't know what to try different. I knew no different and how would I? At first, I tried some of the things my parents had taught me and with not much success. I also didn't feel good doing it and it felt like I was going against my nature of who I really am. I searched out another way, because what I was doing, wasn't working and it wasn't promoting the type of relationship I wanted with my kids. I didn't want my kids to respect me out of fear, I want them to respect me because I'm worthy of respect, because I show my kids respect and treat with them respect. I don't lay my hands on my kids or punish in any way, when they make a mistake and haven't for years. I believe punishment is for adults and teaching is for children. I welcome any and all mistakes my children make and we work together to problem solve it. I don't judge, lecture, critize, punish or isolate. I have a very loving, understanding, open and close relationship with my boys. I have boundaries and they know this and also have their own boundaries, as young adults ( 16, 13). I'm not a perfect parent by any means. I have my moments where I blow and get frustrated, but I also know how to apoligize and mend the hurt to our relationship and they do to now. I have thoughtful boys,they don't blame others when they make a mistake, they even come home and tell us if they did something that wasn't a good choice, they ask advice many times before making a choice ( including not so good ones) they aren't afraid to stand up to us in a good way and they are thinkers. My oldest has a job, besides sports and school and we aren't religious at all. All this, without the use of punishment, threats, fear, bribes and rewards. I only share this, because I see how many people here are struggling with their kids/teens, and I wanted to say, there is a different way and it's possible. We don't have to react or parent out of fear. Doesn't mean I don't feel fear or have fear at times, but 95% of the time, I don't react or parent my children based on my own personal fears and judgement. Their mistakes are their mistakes and I'm just here to guide them through it and be as supportive as possible, while they learn in my care, in a trusted environment.
on Sep. 14, 2013 at 6:10 AM