Sunday, May 18, 2014

Shaming

I decided to really see how common this was since you should never just solely rely on what you hear, read or are told.

This past year alone I have noticed more often than not stories of kids standing in corners with signs, or parents posting pictures of their children with notes all to show others the wrong they did and as a means of punishment.

But who are you really punishing and how is shame and humiliation coming from a parent any different than coming from a so called bully?

What lesson can I learn from putting my child and myself out in the open for the world to judge? Are my parenting skills so poor that I couldn't come up with a better solution to solve an issue in my home?

How are punishments of that magnitude lessons? How are those actions teaching moments?
How is a father wearing booty shorts to "show" his daughter that they may not be appropriate for her to wear going to stop her from finding them cute? All she could think about that is her dad looks like a total jerk.

Our responsibility as parents is to find the best route to solve a problem, to find the safest solution to curve poor behavior, to use best means to keep our children safe and feeling loved, supported and guided.

I can't even imagine ever shaming my daughter or nieces or nephews about anything they have ever done that could have been deemed as poor choice or action. I love them dearly, they are my world. How is shaming and humiliating someone you love useful?

As always I go back to communication. I go back to our choices in words. I go back to starting from birth.

- Your child can't wear so called inappropriate piece of clothing if you don't buy it for them. If they have an allowance you still have a responsibility to monitor their purchases.
- Your child won't curse at a teacher as a means of expression if you have made it clear that certain words will not be tolerated. Not to mention if you have shown that you yourself can curve your potty mouth.
- Your child won't think hitting solves all problems if he is aware of how to use other skills to resolve differences.

There is always a solution. Parenting is a work in progress one size does not fit all.
I don't want to sound corny but love and kindness will always be the best approach.

My daughter can always goes back to her freshmen year in H.S. and how she "thought" that cutting class because she was having some difficulty was the solution, not considering that though I have never been a hovering mom I am and will always be aware of her movements. Just because I don't comment doesn't mean I don't keep a tally. I guess she was so wrapped up in how not to get caught she forgot report cards keep track of your absences. Once I put the pieces together I sat her down for a talk. I talked, she listened, she talked, I listened. Solution was found. Problem solved, punishment...one month of no hanging out after school with friends or weekend sleepovers or activities. That may not seem harsh enough to some but for a child who never gets punished and whose mother never expresses disappointment in her actions, that was enough to set her back on track.

What do you think? What is your idea of the best punishment method?
I am including some links to those shaming methods stories, tell me what you think.

clutchmagonline.com
wfla.com
mommypage.com
oddee.com

6 comments:

  1. I always want to know what their thought (if any) process was when they did something. What was going on in their little brains???

    One thing I have always told both of mine is that I may call you a jerk or something when I am super mad, don't listen to that. Listen to why I am calling you that. Then we can sit down and analyze it and go through things so the negative behavior can go away.

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    1. Patrick I agree...thanks for visit :)

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  2. I don't like the method of shaming as punishment at all, especially in this day and age, when everything is so very public. A lesson that you thought you did in your child's best interest may come back to haunt them later in life, because you can't take that pic back out of the public's hands once it's been released. Also, I do view it as a form of bullying, a form that may be even worse than the infraction justified. A lot of these kids are getting name-called by people who have never even met them and have no idea of what their true character is, because one mistake does not define a character. I agree with you that communication is a much better tool. My daughter does get punished when needed (restrictions, scoldings, ect) but those are private, between us, because once she has paid her dues, so to speak, she should be on good terms again, with a clean slate, but these kids, with their faults posted all over the public, how do they manage to get a clean slate when everyone is judging them? So I really agree with what you have written here, in my long-winded way.

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    1. Marie great points thanks for visit and comments :)

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  3. I actually respectfully disagree on certain points. First, I would not liken shaming to bullying because a bully feels no love for it's target. It is not trying to teach a lesson or help that person in any way (even if misguided help). It is different because in the midst of the shaming you still know that your parents "got your back". A bully never does. If this is untrue, then there are other problems aside from the shaming. Secondly, I do agree that most of the viral extremes were just that- extremes and mostly erred in some pretty obvious ways. However, making a child feel shame at a severe wrong doing is not bad by itself. A more common shaming would be if my child stole from a store. I would fully expect him to return to the store with item, speak to the owner, and explain his actions. Yes, it is a more private and not openly public, but some of the actions of the child were pretty public such as Facebook and cussing out a teacher. The point here is the same though, to make them feel that shame and know they have done wrong. Almost all people have a connection between the feeling of shame and knowing they have done something wrong. It is possible that this was the only way the parent could find for them to know what that feels like. In the instance of the child cussing out the teacher (the second time), they obviously felt no wrong doing or shame about doing it the first time. I am not saying that their parent had no recourse as I wasn't there, but I also will not condemn them for their actions either (because I still wasn't there). I cannot personally imagine myself ever creating a public shaming that would cause harm to his future professional reputation (I am very careful even with blog pictures), such as the "smoked pot" sign, but my son is currently 5 and we have pretty good communication. I just hope he never shuts me out at a point when I "need" to get through to him.

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    1. Rachel first thank you for visit and comments. Always great to have different views on all things. I don't know how me shaming my child would let her know I have her back and love her but perhaps to someone else it might. The emotions that shame bring about in my opinion just aren't great ways to teach a lesson. Thanks again for honesty, opinion and visit be well :)

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