Wednesday, April 14, 2010

How Far Would You Go in Enforcing Discipline

Up to what extent would you try to discipline your child? That depends, you might say, on how old your child is and on what he or she has done.

If your daughter made a mess on the wall with mom’s favorite lipstick, would you give her a day’s scolding? If your son made a small but visible dent on dad’s car while learning how to ride a bike, would you ground him for a week?

Or would you rather take it everything else to the physical level?

For whatever wrongdoing your child has done, none would be probably more extreme than what this mother had done to discipline her son.

Salve G (not her full name), arrived home one night and noticed that they have no electricity. Upon inquiry, she found out that her son had cut most of their electrical wiring and sold them for a meager sum.

Irate, she confronted her son who’s already lying in bed. But she couldn’t care less for any response; all she wants is for the power to be restored ASAP.

Growing furious, she grabbed a hanger and a broomstick and used it on his son like a mad caller beating his drum in a dragon boat race.

Initially, her son would try to cover up. But her striking never ceased, from foot to head as she pleased.

The mother only stopped when she herself grew tired. Her son just laid there, no groan, no visible signs of grimacing.

It was then she realized she that had done the unthinkable. Her son was brought to a nearby hospital where nurses were able to resuscitate him… albeit temporarily.

She felt so guilty and sorry. But her words of apology meant nothing now as her son’s body finally conceded from her own harsh doing.

I’m not a perfect dad but I don’t think I’ll be that insensitive when it comes to enforcing discipline in the house. Punishment is pretty much ok but as most parents have put it “…make the punishment fit the crime”.

There are many ways to implement discipline such as the non-violent (scolding, isolation, grounding, etc.) and non-punitive (rewards, natural consequences, reason, etc.) approach.

As parents, we have a God-given responsibility to train our children and prepare them for the future. Intimidating helps but we must never lose sight that we are guiding our children into behaving properly and making the right decisions.


  1. As of the moment, I can't exactly determine on how far would I go with regards child discipline. I agree when you say that punishment depends on what they have done. I make sure that my child understand being responsible with his words and actions. Thinking back the times when I was young and carefree, I understand my child's need for growth and independence having to commit mistakes along the way.

    Now, all I can do is provide proper guidance and support him in any life decisions helping him to be a better person.

  2. You're right. Children learn from us parents and from their mistakes too! And in the process, we learn to become better parents by guiding them for as long as we could.

  3. The example was not discipline but a venting of anger. No mention of how old the child was but if he was old enough to cut wiring and sell it he was old enough to know better. So it sounds to me that structured discipline was not inforce in his life at an early age. some parents allow their children to get away with too much and when the children cross the line they were never informed about, the parents snap. Now both lives are ruined.