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Mom Confessions Mom Confessions

What's wrong with kids today?

Anonymous
Posted by Anonymous
  • 27 Replies


http://www.positive-parents.org/2011/07/whats-wrong-with-kids-today.html?m=1


"Before you go and criticize the younger generation, just remember who raised them." - Unknown

We've all heard the complaints. Today's children are more disrespectful, undisciplined, and have a greater sense of entitlement than ever before. But do they? Alfie Kohn talks about this in his article Spoiled Rotten: A Timeless Complaint. He notes that "Parents today, we're informed,either can’t or won’t set limits for their children. Instead of disciplining them, they coddle and dote and bend over backward to shield them from frustration and protect their self-esteem. The result is that we’re raising a generation of undisciplined narcissists who expect everything to go their way, and it won’t be pretty -- for them or for our society -- when their sense of entitlement finally crashes into the unforgiving real world."

Sound familiar? 

He goes on to give 3 examples from authors stating the same concerns, published in 1962, 1944, and 1911, respectively. 

"The revelation that people were saying almost exactly the same things a century ago ought to make us stop talking in mid-sentence and sit down – hard. In fact, the more carefully we look at the cranky-wistful conventional wisdom about how children are raised, the less there is to be said in its favor." - Alfie Kohn

I've heard it over and over again. Kids need more discipline! Parents today are too soft! Well, depending on where you look for statistics, anywhere between 65% to 90% of American parents are spanking their kids. Here are some statistics I found:

- 68 percent of American parents think spanking is not only good but essential to child rearing;

- 90 percent of parents spank their toddlers at least three times a week; two-thirds spank them once a day;

- One in four parents begin to spank when their child is 6 months old, 50 percent when their child is 12 months old;

I'd say it's pretty clear that a lack of discipline is not "what's wrong with kids today." So what is wrong with kids today? Could it be that the only thing wrong with them is our perspective of them? Perhaps so.

But I have another theory.

I believe the problem is not a lack of discipline, but a lack of connection. For decades upon decades, we have raised children with fear (Do you want a spanking?), punishment (You're grounded for a week!), shame (You're such a naughty little girl), and coercion (If you don't pick up your toys, I'm throwing them in a trash bag!). We've become so wrapped up in "raising them right" that we've forgotten how to love them right. We've bought into the so-called experts advice of not spoiling them with too much attention, letting them cry it out, and not sparing the rod, and we've pushed aside our own instincts. Thus, parents have drawn a line between themselves and their children that dare not be crossed. "I'm your parent, not your friend!" This has been so ingrained throughout the generations that many don't even question it. (I'm questioning it, are you?) Naturally, we love our children. We give them hugs and praise, conditionally. We buy them the latest gadgets. But are we connected?

For too long, children have been seen and not heard.

It's time to hear them.

For too long, we've raised our children using fear tactics.

It's time to use love tactics.

A century's worth of complaints is more than enough evidence that we're doing something wrong. Depression and mental health issues are a major problem because adults have to put so much into healing their childhood wounds, and some never do heal.

Let's stop wounding them. Instead of punishing, teach. Instead of hitting, hug. Instead of isolating, get close. Instead of coercion, cooperate. Instead of conditional love, love unconditionally. Let's build strong relationships with our children, set good examples for them, and allow them to feel all of their emotions. Let's say "I'm right here with you" instead of "Go to your room!" Let's say "I hear how upset you are" instead of "Quit your crying." It's time to change the way we raise our children. 

"There is no single effort more radical in its potential for saving the world than a transformation in the way we raise our children." - Marianne Williamson

Learn about what positive parenting really is. Learn how to set loving limits. Learn how to elicit cooperation through relationship. Learn how to break the cycle of fear, and begin a new cycle of love and connectedness.

If we do this, I guarantee our story will be different a generation from now. Imagine where we could be in a century...

Posted by Anonymous on Jun. 23, 2013 at 2:17 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Anonymous
by Anonymous 2 on Jun. 23, 2013 at 2:29 PM
Yea. No.
Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Jun. 23, 2013 at 2:31 PM


Quoting Anonymous:

Yea. No.

Great choice! lol smh

BeAmour
by Tonya on Jun. 23, 2013 at 2:34 PM
I do both with my ds.
Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Jun. 23, 2013 at 2:35 PM


The suggestions at the end seem a little cheesy and unrealistic but the sentiment behind it is absolutely plausible.

KimmieLu
by on Jun. 23, 2013 at 4:02 PM
1 mom liked this
Spanking does not equal discipline. I'm not against spanking, but too many parents assume that smacking their kid is "disciplining them."

The problem IS a lack of discipline. Parents are too caught up in being the friend and protecting their kids emotions and egos that they forget to teach them how the world really works. If you throw a fit at your job, YOU GET FIRED, not a lovey-dovey let's express our feelings talk. If you haul off and throw something at a person because you're mad, you could go to jail. Not get told to use your words.

I'm all for connecting with your kids and having a firm, trusting and loving relationship, but there needs to be consequences sometimes (not saying it has to be physical) rather than only an explanation of why it was wrong. Cause and effect is important.
Owl_Feather
by Silver Member on Jun. 23, 2013 at 4:08 PM

 I think the word "discipline" scares a lot of parents. Some automatically think of switches or spanking. But it's nothing more than teaching children stop and learn from their mistakes. This could be doing extra chores to learn responsibility or sitting in the time out chair to calm down and think of a solution to their situation. My son is special needs and "time out" wasnt working for us. So we started saying "calm-down time" instead and he reacts better.

jojo_star
by on Jun. 23, 2013 at 4:12 PM

I agree. I am connected to my children. I don't use fear or pain to teach them, I use love, and common sense. My children are people, and should be treated as such. If they disagree with something, I want them to tell me, while being respectful, of course. My children are very well behaved, have strong work ethics, are high achievers, and all around great individuals that I not just love, but actually really like. I discipline my children without hitting them, without threatening them, and always have. It takes more effort and patience at first, than just spanking them would, or than just taking toys away, or threatening to take something away, but the pay off is much better. My kids are better behaved, and have a closer and better relationship with my husband and I than almost any other children I know, and most of the other kids I know, were and are spanked. 

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Jun. 23, 2013 at 4:15 PM


Quoting KimmieLu:

Spanking does not equal discipline. I'm not against spanking, but too many parents assume that smacking their kid is "disciplining them."

The problem IS a lack of discipline. Parents are too caught up in being the friend and protecting their kids emotions and egos that they forget to teach them how the world really works. If you throw a fit at your job, YOU GET FIRED, not a lovey-dovey let's express our feelings talk. If you haul off and throw something at a person because you're mad, you could go to jail. Not get told to use your words.

I'm all for connecting with your kids and having a firm, trusting and loving relationship, but there needs to be consequences sometimes (not saying it has to be physical) rather than only an explanation of why it was wrong. Cause and effect is important.

It sounds like you read this but... I'm stumped how you are still at this same conclusion.

Setting boundaries, guiding and allowing consequences is exactly what this is suggesting.

It's the attitude of not giving children the benefit of the doubt, or respect and space that leads to harsh, harmful and unnecessary punishments like spanking, yelling, shaming and being overly controlling.

My ex boyfriend and his siblings were raised very strictly. Their parents were very old-fashioned and controlled them by inducing fear.

They ALL grew up with severe problems. They all have done jail time, they are all extremely violent, dishonest, sadistic. A couple have schizophrenia and half of them have very sociopathic traits.

This is an extreme example but I bet anything that most of the people in jail for violent crimes have a history of this kind of parenting.

My parents did spank me occasionally, but they were loving and respectful towards me otherwise. I will admit I was kind of a brat sometimes. They made mistakes with parenting me, and my dad in particular raised me to think I was some kind of princess and I have certain issues because of his "worship" of me. I disagree with that and I don't believe in saving children from consequences.

BUT, I grew up to a very compassionate, kind and empathic person as a direct result of the kindness and interest I was given growing up.

As one of the comments in the article said, there is a big difference between permissive parenting and gentle parenting.


Bekki
by Silver Member on Jun. 23, 2013 at 4:16 PM

90% of parents spank their toddlers 3 times a week? I say that's bullsh!t. Not true.

MomTo2Boys12
by on Jun. 23, 2013 at 4:17 PM
What's wrong with today's kids? Their parents, that's who. Parents seem to find it more important to be their children's best friend, rather than parent. It's pathetic, really.
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