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Father, Mother, Brother, Sister

“As a growing child, sticks and stones will break my bones, and words can also wound me”

My mother and father’s Love included “tough love” which was to beat us when we disobeyed. Growing up in my time this was normal. It was the form of punishment in other homes and schools. Even my neighbor could send me home with a lashing. And if you complained when you got home you might get beaten again.

Strict discipline was handed down from Father, Mother, Brother, Sister. I remember the day my father stopped beating me, I had become stronger and I was numb to his lash. The moment he looked in my eyes and saw the strength, he knew he had to try a different form of discipline.

Raising and disciplining children today is hard work if it is not done with unconditional love. When we dole out physical abuse we are creating a continual cycle that leads to abuse in the future, as well as violence in the next generation. Finding better ways to discipline your children is the key to successfully showing them how to resolve issues without resorting to violence.

Take time to listen to why they feel it’s necessary to continue disobeying your wishes. Be patient and show them where their behavior will lead. Practice unconditional love and make that the tough love. By being tough within yourselves not to hit or abuse our children with harsh words you have a chance to break the cycle of abuse that move from Father, Mother, Brother, Sister.

When we train our kids to see violence as toughness, why do we complain when they become explosive teenagers and adults who breed on violent games and power struggles that erode relationships? I believe you can be firm, saying “NO” and refrain from using violence as a way of discipline. Practice a new version of “tough love” by being tough on yourself not to resort to violence and open to others ways to teach good behavior.

Below are some ways to better Discipline:

Communication: Open the lines of communication with your children by spending time listening to them. Take time out of your day or use dinner time as family time to discuss any grievances that need to be air between siblings. Make them feel comfortable to talk to you before they find the wrong ears to listen and instruct them.

Practice what you preach: Don’t expect your children to do as you say and not what you do. Children learn the most by observation, so make sure you are sending the same message that you are speaking. If you make a mistake make sure you tell them that you did and why they need not to follow in your footsteps.

Watch what you say around them: We all know that kids say whatever they are hear. When we speak to them in a positive loving way it becomes easier not to have to resort to physical abuse when they disobey. When we learn to use words with a caring tone we move away from creating confrontation that lead to having to suppress them emotionally.

Pay attention to what you allow them to see: It is said that the mind knows no difference between imagination and the actual physical experience. When children are exposed to violent games it leaves a residue in their subconscious mind as to how to deal with situation they do not know how to handle or voice. It’s very important that they learn the difference between TV, games and reality.

Explain why they need to do as they are told: If you are going to discipline your child explain to them why you need to discipline them. Show them why it’s wrong to do what they are doing. Teach by kind example so they get the message clear and that they totally understand why it’s better to listen that to learn by painful experiences.

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