When most of us think about disciplining children, it brings up some unsettling thoughts. Most of us were disciplined when we were younger, and by no means was it fun.
The hackneyed line “this hurts me more than it hurts you, always seemed like such nonsense to me, and I find it difficult at times to discipline my own children.
However, after studying the subject, I have come to the conclusion that disciplining children is critical to their development.
The biggest thing that disciplining children does is set boundaries.
It makes kids aware from a very early age that there are consequences for certain behaviors, and that if you act out, you are going to be punished.
When you think about it, it makes sense that kids would benefit from and perhaps subconsciously desire discipline. It is a big world to them that they don't understand, and this helps them understand how to act and what not to do.
Disciplining children also teaches them the difference between right and wrong.
When children are disciplined for certain types of behavior, they immediately associate that type of behavior with negativity and disapproval, and it makes them less likely to repeat the behavior.
If a child is never shown that slapping another child is not acceptable, in other words, they may continue to do so.
The question becomes, what is proper punishment when disciplining children?
The fact of the matter is, that you typically cannot reason with a three-year-old unless he or she is incredibly precocious. Sometimes, a swat on the backside is really necessary.
Now, I am not advocating physical abuse toward children, but I used myself as an example. I was spanked as a young child when I was bad.
As I got older, I was grounded or punished in some other way. I turned out fine, and I realized that you discipline children in a way that is appropriate to their age.
I have found that parents who don't mind disciplining children when they act out have more respectful and well adjusted kids.
They understand how to get along better in society and don't have nearly as many behavioral problems when they reach their teenage and adult years.
If parents discipline their children when they are young and help them to understand right from wrong at an early age, there are usually a lot fewer problems down the line.
Disciplining children can be a sensitive and tricky matter. Some people might not agree with what I am saying, but I am just going by what I have observed as a counselor and a father.