Monday, March 28, 2011

Does parental tough love really work?

Child parenting would be simple since we have all been children ourselves and have experienced the parenting styles of our own parents and those of other family members and friends with kids while growing up. But it’s up to the new parents if they want to inherit the way on how they have been disciplined.

The essence of the tough love parenting style is to hold your ground and guide your teenager in a way that compels him or her to take responsibility for his actions and make changes in behavior.

Does parental tough love really work? Based on my experienced I say YES. But if anybody can ask me if I do this parenting method to my kids, my answer is a big NO! Why? Because this way of parenting method will create hatred mind to the child toward his/her parents and sometimes may results to anger and bad behaviors of a child. Tough love parenting is applicable if the behavior of a child constituted out-of-control. Out-of-control behavior encompasses acts like outright defiance, self-harming behaviors like drug abuse, blatant dishonesty and criminal behavior.

Rebellion and disobedience are just as pervasive today as parental authority disintegrates. Today, parents must choose who and what shapes their children lives. Without a doubt, God still holds parents responsible for their children - to instruct them and to discipline them.

Most parents’ think of parenting in terms of what they must do to raise a child, parenting is also a gift you give yourself. In the past, children grew up in a society that clearly defined what was right and what was wrong. Parents were recognized as the primary authority figure in their children lives. Now as the world conforms, our children react to the unprecedented immorality, anti-family, and anti-parent concepts in schools and media.

Successful parenting is not an accident, but the result of having a parenting plan and a dedication to your children. One father defined the process of raising children: “You may always enjoy being a parent, but not always enjoy parenting.” Parents are quick to share the challenges of trying to cultivate good character traits in their offspring. Every parent wants of develop certain character traits -- respect, confidence, and unselfishness. How can parents generate compassion and consideration in their children?

Children need to know that they are valued. The Bible says children are a gift: “Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him” (Psalm 127:3). Of course a parent might not consider times of disciplining “a rewarding experience”! Yet, even God disciplines those that He dearly values (Hebrews 12:6). When a child discovers they can make a difference in another person’s life, they realize they are of value as an individual. By allowing your child to help you, sort laundry, rake leaves, or get your sweater for you, you are telling that small child, “Hey, you are a valuable part of this family. We couldn’t get along without you.” Parents must never take these young lives for granted, but regard them with high priority. A valued child learns respect, confidence, and unselfishness as they contribute to the family’s well-being.

Francis Bacon [1561-1626] understood the primary source of a child’s learning. “Parents, who wish to train up their children in the way they should go, must go in the way in which they would have their children go.” A child doesn’t have to look far outside their home to find examples of cruelty or disrespect. A simple family activity can often counteract those negative influences. Children must be given opportunities to practice compassion towards others.

Children by nature want to receive attention and approval, so they will exercise what they have learned from their parents. Children must choose their own acts of kindness. When a child or even a parent responds unselfishly, the impact is significant.

Teaching children about respect and consideration can occur even if we’ve failed in our parenting plan. Your child misbehaves and you snap responding with tense anger. What can be done when you’ve done something wrong? Apologize. Imagine your child’s reaction when you say, “I’m sorry. I didn’t think about what I said or did. How do you feel?” On those occasions, parents teach respect and humility to their children.

We all make a mistake, but an apology gives us an opportunity to teach our children about extending forgiveness. Perhaps you think you’ve made too many mistakes in life. Imagine God’s reaction when we say, “I’m sorry for what I said or did.” How do you think He feels? “If we say that we have no sin, that a big mistakes, we are only fooling ourselves and refusing to accept the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong” (1 John 1:8-9). God is ever-watchful and responds to our needs. As children of God, our Heavenly Father values us.

When we instruct our children, we are not simply presenting a list of rules to follow. We are letting our actions speak by training them according to God's standards. By living a righteous life, parents provide their children with the understanding of how God's rules govern all our lives. Then, as our children mature, they develop a habit of doing right, serving God by making their own decisions.

It is the goal of every parent to see their children accept responsibility for their decisions. If our children learn from their mistakes and accept godly correction, then we are on the right course. One father tried to take a short-cut in explaining responsibility by saying, "It's not what you do, but whether or not you get caught. And if you get caught, be willing to pay the consequences!" Obviously, there's no fast-track for instructing children. Parental instruction is a difficult journey that begins at birth and continues for many years. And there may be countless times when our children make careless decisions and even choose to reject instruction. These are the times when discipline is most necessary.

Lastly, Jesus Christ values us so much that He sent His only Son Jesus to die on the cross for our sin. Even when we were guilty and deserved death, God provided a way that we can have forgiveness of sin and live with Him in heaven for eternity. He rose from death and now offers us the gift of eternal life. What a joy it is to share this message with our children, for they too can accept Jesus’ gift of forgiveness.

1 comment:

  1. The thing about tough love is people dont look at it this way it all depends on the child or teen every teen and child is difrent as far as discipline goes