Year's Resolution for Parents: Discipline, Not Punishment
31, 2013- Tom Joseph
HARRISBURG - It isn't among the usual New Year's resolutions, such as quitting smoking
or losing weight, but according to one expert, a goal for 2014 of parenting
through discipline instead of punishment can have life-long positive effects.
Ingrid Bauer, a mother of four and an expert on communication within families,
said there's a big difference between punishment - such as spankings or
time-outs, that may just teach kids not to get caught next time - and
discipline, which can teach values and bring parent and child closer.
with a child in partnership, you gain their trust, and the motivation for them
to behave in ways that you hope that they will, and that will benefit them,
comes from inside them; whereas punishment, it's all motivated primarily
through fear of something external, rather than being connected to why they're
doing something," she explained.
said that better than meting out punishment when a child misbehaves is to talk
with the child, try to understand why the kid acted out, and then work together
to change the behavior.
using a discipline-based approach also works because, at the same time children
are given expectations, they also learn that their needs matter as well.
means "having their parents really validate what's important to them and
knowing that they're going to be considered, as well as their parents also
telling them what's important to them and what they'd like," Bauer said.
"And my experience is that over time, when you build that relationship of
trust naturally, if you let that flow of love happen, they want to contribute.
It makes them feel good."
leads workshops around the country on what she calls "compassionate
parenting," and is certified by the Center for Nonviolent Communication.