February 14, 2012 | in Nanny
How many times do you tell your child you are going to punish them if they don’t stop? Are you a parent who gives out idle threats? Sometimes parents are afraid to follow through with punishment because they don’t want to hurt their child’s feelings; they keep holding out for the child to change their behavior. Here are ten reasons why you should follow through with any threats of punishment.
- Keeping your word – You child needs to know that you mean what you say and you say what you mean. If you can’t follow through then don’t say that you will.
- Setting boundaries – When you set boundaries you need to enforce them. When your start early you will have fewer disciplinary problems later on as your child gets older.
- Children need discipline – When you teach your children discipline you are doing them a huge favor that will pay off later in life. Educational and employment leaders will not be likely to be as lenient as Mom and Dad.
- Misbehavior has consequences – Children need to know that there are consequences when they don’t follow the rules. Failing to follow through on punishment teaches them that they don’t have to worry about consequences, which is a false concept. Learning that early on may just keep them from some very serious consequences later in life.
- Don’t reward bad behavior – One thing parents don’t realize is that by not following through with punishment they are inadvertently rewarding bad behavior. The message the child receives is that it’s really okay to misbehave because there really are no consequences.
- Following through now will avoid more serious problems later – If your child learns that breaking rules at home is okay they may think that it is okay to do the same thing outside the home. Consequently issues can arise in school and in other places; then your child will have to face consequences beyond your control.
- Following through teaches your child right from wrong – When you follow through with discipline for misbehavior you are teaching your child right from wrong. You child will learn that wrong behavior elicits unpleasant consequences.
- Your child learns accountability – Following through with punishment teaches your child that he or she will be held accountable for their actions.
- Children want boundaries – A little known secret is that children actually want to know what their boundaries are. They like to know the limits of their behavior and they count on their parents to set those limits. Following through with discipline helps to set the limits your child needs and unconsciously wants.
- Following through shows you care – Believe it or not when you follow through with discipline your child knows that you care enough to be concerned about their behavior. Your child may not like the consequences, but on an inner level they will appreciate it.
Children need and want to know what their boundaries are. They also need to be taught wrong from right. When you set limits and clearly let the consequences be known for crossing the line you are doing your child a favor by reinforcing the rules and following through with appropriate punishment.
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