Friday, September 23, 2011

Raising a child to have the power of self while keeping ones sanity

Discipline and parenting is all about control and when you realize you really don't have control, you probably retain or gain some of your sanity back.
My husband and I have different views about time outs.
I don't think they are helpful and useful.
My husband thinks they are.
I'm sure my opinions will change as does everything with parenting and human development.
For now this is how I see it, the kid is trying to express and learn his/her boundaries and develop his/her personal power.  Timeouts have no learning significance, decrease personal power and only frustrate the parent more than the child because timeouts are still giving them what they want which is attention and focus.  They still wield the control.
Now, I'm not saying that I don't take my kid out of a situation when she needs to be disciplined.
I do.  I take her out and I get down to her eye level and I try to get her to listen to why I pulled her out.  She may not completely understand but I feel I need to respect her and she needs me to hear me out.
I also give her a consequence if it happens again.  For example, if she decided to run out of my eye sight again and does not return/respond when I call her name, her playdate is cut short.  For me, she makes the decision then.
Again, I know that discipline is different for everyone and my thinking may change tomorrow and/or with a different situation.
I'm not saying I'm right.  There is no right or wrong.  It's different for every parent, every child and every situation.
What I am saying is it's hard for me to have a difference of opinion with my husband but also keep my tongue about it.
There are somethings I won't.  For example, thankfully DH and I agree corporal punishment is not for us right now.  We also agree that mutual respect is important.  We do not believe children should be subordinate individuals with no ability to question.
But just like I said before, I need to let their relationship play out.  They need to develop their dynamics.  That's the only way my child will learn and grow not only socialization-wise but in confidence and self-assurance.  The one thing a child should realize and continue to grow is personal power.  A person needs to know he/she has power and can use it for good and to strengthen themselves.
In a few months I may look back on this and say, "What the hell was I thinking?" but right now, I need to take a step back be confident in my decision and be supportive of my husband's.