Today's President's Day topic on The View was all about a new book Elisabeth found...in fact she has read it to the point of being "dog-earred". I have tried to find the title and author at the web site...but much to my dismay was unable to get this information for this blog post. (I will further research it and get back later) Needless to say, the discussion was on disciplining children in today's modern society. Let's talk to them and then have them perform acts of random kindness to make up for their offenses...how politically correct is that?!!
Elisabeth, who I normally tend to agree with on most days of the week, was going on and on about how this author doesn't believe that children should be made to apologize for inappropriate acts towards others. Instead, a mother or adult should encourage the offending child to commit an act of kindness toward the offended. For example: child says something nasty to another child and the other child's feelings are hurt...an adult observing this should NOT make the child who made the offending comment apologize for what was said (children don't understand this concept), they should instead go give the offended child a ball or toy that would make that child happy. SAY WHAT? What does this teach either child?
Mother/Adult: "Now, Johnnie that wasn't nice...go give Sally
this toy...it will make her happy!"Child: "Why would I want to give Sally this toy...she
just pushed me down behind the slide and then stuck her tongue out at me...yeah
right , Ma...you go give Sally a toy."
Break away to the long shot of the whole View cast....Whoopi is sitting there in stunned amazement with the biggest "Say what?!" expression on her face....along with every other mother who was raised in her generation. Whoopi finally speaks up after letting Sherri, Elisabeth and the clueless, Joy have gone on and on about not making a child apologize for an offensive act . Whoopi states that she never allowed her daughter to act in this way...she nipped it in the bud immediately and not necessarily by talking to her child. She would perform the same mean act upon the child, thus demonstrating or allowing the child to feel what the other child had felt...followed by a firm reprimand telling the kid that the behavior was unacceptable. Whoopi even tells a story about how her mother would have handled a situation: if a kid pulled the tail on a cat or dog...her mother would have come up and pulled her hair to let her see how it felt. Joy immediately comments how this indeed would probably teach empathy...yeah! Joy...you actually got something right.
But in the end ALL of The View cast missed the point....Whoopi was the closest to the right anwser....
We as a society do not set boundaries and dealbreakers for our kids. We have proven for years, since the infamous theories of Dr. Spock of Baby & Childcare fame, that talking at children without reprimand or consequences has failed miserably in the raising of our children. If our children do not have boundaries laid down early on...insisting that they apologize for their mean acts and words...these children will not learn how to measure their words and tame their tongues...even their actions towards others. They will blurt out whatever they feel and follow it up with a kindness to buy the offended persons forgiveness...or even physically harm someone thinking that all will be well when they do their community service act toward that person or society.
Elisabeth throw that book away...you will be sorry that you followed this advice.....set boundaries and dealbreakers with your kids....make them apologize for their words and actions, even if they don't understand now...they will learn after awhile because you have pointed out their wrong and made them atone for it by apologizing. Soon you will find that your children will measure their words...learn self-control in their acts...learn to walk away from another who is hurting them with out confrontation, instead of performing senseless acts of kindness for someone who is too young to get it anyways or may be just as guilty of being mean as your child.