6 Ways Parents Shouldn’t Punish Their Kids
I don’t give a care regarding WHAT they did. Here’s what you should never do and why. I know I’ll forget some things, but I can always just write something for this later. I also have others, but this is nearing 1000 words (sorry!), so a part two is definitely in the works.
#6 Make them swallow their own spit for being thirsty.
It’s become a habit for me to continue to do this just because. Any time I was thirsty, this was said to me. And if YOU or SOMEONE ELSE is getting a drink and it WOULDN’T HURT to get them a drink, don’t you dare make them sit there and make them swallow their own spit whilst they watch you/someone else drink. That’s YOU, trying to be POWERFUL, when you’re really just being a bitch/an asshole.
I almost always had a sore throat after doing this, and because it’s what I was told to do and taught to do for several years, the habit comes back ever so often. It gives me a headache, it uses a lot of energy, and sometimes I even do it so much that my spit becomes blood. Because when you’re trying to swallow your spit, you’re forcing that spit upstream. That’s spit you likely lack. I see it as only dehydrating yourself.
#5 Punish them for wetting the bed.
When you’re asleep, you’re asleep. Unless you train yourself, you can’t control your dreams, so how should you be able to control your bladder? If they’re constantly doing it, buy them Good Nights. They’re specifically for bedwetting. Then, try to stop them from getting a drink/eating after eight, or at least a few hours before bed. Have them use the potty before they go to bed. If they’re thirsty, let them get a drink. If, after a few weeks, they continue to do this, take them to the doctor! It could be a medical condition.
I ended up having a medical condition that made me unable to not wet the bed, and I was always punished for wetting the bed even after diagnosis. I still do it, only rarely. There is medication for it, that will help, but remember to be patient. It really lowers your self-esteem, because it’s so embarrassing. Even admitting it on my personal blog is difficult for me, but I know now that everyone develops at different rates.
As a note: If your child is going to a friend’s house overnight for any reason (i.e. sleepover, slumber party, etc.), talk to the parent(s) about your child’s condition before you tell your child they can go to see if they will understand. If they seem completely against it/don’t take it well, it’s probably best that the child doesn’t go. This does, unfortunately, risk the chance(s) of the child also being bullied and/or the withdrawal of the invitation.
#4 Mess up their room./Throw out their stuff.
Just don’t. Don’t mess up their room because you’re upset, don’t mess up their room because something is out of place, don’t mess up their room to teach them a lesson, and don’t fucking throw out their stuff because you’re trying to “teach them a lesson”.
You know what that taught me? That taught me that having a room that met others’ cleaning standards made me completely miserable. It also taught me that having things that were important to me meant absolutely nothing to the people who had bought for me, etc. It taught me that everything is replaceable. It taught me to not be materialistic, but it also taught me that wanting to have things for me is wrong. It has made me somewhat of a hoarder. It has also made me feel weird about accepting things others give me. I’ve spent years trying to be okay with having and wanting stuff, but I feel like I’m someone who doesn’t deserve it.
#3 Make them feel horrid because “in other countries ____”.
What works for some doesn’t necessarily work for others. Don’t make them feel shitty about ___, because all you’re doing is patronizing what they feel. Try to use a different method whose side effects won’t carry on later in their life and make them feel selfish and as if their problems are pedestrian and don’t need tending to.
#2 Not signing for their homework/allowing them to do their homework.
Don’t destroy it or take it away, either! None of my teachers had sympathy for me, nor did they believe me. Your kids not only receive wrath from you, but they receive it from their teachers as well and suffer consequences from it.
“If you don’t clean your room, you won’t get to eat supper tonight.”
“If your room isn’t x% clean/I can’t see a difference in x time, you don’t get dinner tonight.”
“If you don’t do your homework, you won’t get breakfast.”
“If you don’t do your chores, you won’t get a snack.”
I don’t care what the fucking reason is, you don’t take away a meal (includes snacks) from a child. Aside from spanking (or beating), I was punished with this method a lot. And now I starve myself to punish myself, because I feel as if it’s one of the few ways that I’m supposed to punish myself. And then I’m starving, so I eat a lot. And then I feel horrendous because I never would have been allowed to eat that much, so I starve myself again. I know it’s wrong, but it doesn’t feel completely wrong. Lather, rinse, repeat. If you don’t want your kid growing up to have an eating disorder, let them eat.