Discipline Vs. Love
When you discipline children it is important to be consistent. Thus, our reactions and punishments for bad decisions should be the same every time. When we do this, it is easy to explain the “why” for consequences. Our children are new to the whole right and wrong concept when they are born so we have to teach and model right and wrong. When we react emotionally with anger (aka over reacting) we can send confusing messages. These messages can be completely undesired. For example, instead of teaching a child not to hit others, we are teaching them to not make Dad mad. Even worse, we might be teaching them, don’t hit others while we are watching a football game.
I have used set rules and consequences to help me be consistent. This has the additional effect of allowing the rules to be the “bad guy” rather than the parent enforcing the rules. We can even occasionally be the “good guy” and offer a reduced sentence. We want to emphasize that we are helping them avoid duly earned consequences. Therefore, we can be seen as weaving love and sympathy into our discipline.
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