This blog is going to attempt to explain to my Mother why we do not punish our children. Mom, this ones for you…
My mother often says to me “How will they ever learn?” or “If you keep doing it they will get it.”.
It is usually in response to something like Emmett, who is two, going out onto the road.
My momma suggests that I make him go into the house if he won’t stay off the road.
But I have a better way.
It’s more gentle and loving and it doesn’t damage the child/adult bond.
Any form of punishment could send the child the message that unless they do what you say, you will make them suffer. That’s sad!
I prefer to tell him “Emmett, don’t go on the road, baby. There are cars.” And I hold him and kiss him and he says “um”.
He will learn.
He will learn because he values his life, because we value his life.
He just needs to get a little older and a little wiser and then he will stop endangering his life in such ways.
He will stop running out into the street even if he is not punished for it.
And putting him in the house is punishment.
My method may not be as quick as hers but it feels better.
I feel connected and caring towards him.
His motivation for “listening” will also be internal, meaning that he is doing it because he wants to be safe and not because he fears punishment.
Do I have you convinced yet, Ma? Anyone else believe me?
For my next blog I think I’ll pick on my mom again and tackle when she says “They act that way because you let them.”
Oh, it’ll be an easy one. Love you, Mom!