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Old Fogey Rants

Child Discipline

Disciplining today’s children seems to be a bit of a crap shoot. Discipline does not always entail physical contact. But there could be instances where nothing else will work but some type of physical action, especially when children do not respect their parents.

There are still some parents that take an active roll in making sure that kids not only know right from wrong, but also take responsibility for their actions. However, the vast majority of parents provide next to no discipline at all. There are many reasons I’ve heard/seen as to why parents are so lenient.

Some feel guilty about not spending time with their kids. Either they are working a lot of hours to “succeed” and “provide” for their families, or maybe they want to have their own social lives, or perhaps they just don’t want all the extra noise and chaos normally associated with children. While I can understand, and even commiserate on some level, I think that discipline should still be doled out.

In the past decade or so, a new reason has cropped up for lack of discipline. Parents are afraid their children will call the police on them. In extreme cases, kids are even suing their parents <which is utter crap in my opinion, lawyers jumping on THAT boat should be disbarred in my opinion>. I have to admit, I have no idea how I would handle that situation. On the one hand, I WANT to think that early discipline would make it unlikely to ever occur. But given what we read in the media, see on TV and are pummeled with on the internet, it seems all too possible. Now why those parents don’t just let social services take the kids away, I don’t know.

And then there is the most frustrating reason of which I can think. Some parents just dote on their children so much, spoiling them in fact, that discipline is a four letter word. I honestly think that scientists should study this phenomenon to see if there isn’t some physical reason for it. I would not be a bit surprised to find that those children give off some odd pheromone like newborns do. In infants, it is said to be a defense mechanism that manipulates adults to be protective. I do not know when that stops, but perhaps some children produce it longer. But even accepting that this is true, parents still need to have a practical view on how they treat their children.

Overall, I think that by not disciplining children, parents are doing them a disservice. Not only will it make them harder to deal with, and work with, as they get older. But when they run into situations and people that will not cave in to them, they will become very frustrated indeed.




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