The Importance Of Being Stern

A lot of parents may think that being stern is too harsh on kids but in some cases, it is a good thing.

A lot of parents may think that being stern is too harsh on kids but in some cases, it is a good thing. Children can benefit from a few boundaries and rules are often good in instilling a good attitude and responsibility in your child.
There is of course a line in being too stern or strict, to being too laid back and it is good for parents to get the right balance. An extreme approach can temporarily control bad behaviour but in the long run it doesn’t solve the problem.
Children do need to know about self-discipline and responsible behaviour but for themselves not because of the fear of harsh punishment.
It is important to not try and control your child but guide them in how they should behave and instilling an attitude of them wanting to behave. Too much control can become like bullying if it is extreme and children learn firstly at home, so they too may model this behaviour with friends or their siblings which can leave them in a delicate position.
There can be a happy medium approach that will be a compromise and while it may contain punishment like timeouts or grounding they will not be extreme punishments that some strict parents will use. Strict parenting does matter as children with little discipline will grow to have no understanding of mistakes or taking responsibility.
The strict disciplinarian style of parenting teaches kids that they must cope with the consequences of their behaviour. Children will learn values and the ability to make healthy decisions, and it is advised to be stern but not too stern that you scare your kiddies.
Here are some things you can do that are ideal for keeping the stern/happy parent balance right.
  • Be calm, firm and fair with your children while you can be angry you need to give your child a chance to redeem themselves.
  • Show them the consequences of their actions and teach them to respond responsibly to their mistakes even if it means getting into trouble, being honest is vital.
  • Take away toys, games or things that your kiddie loves if they do misbehave badly. For older children taking away their technology devices will be enough to get their attention.
  • Follow through and don’t change your mind half way through a punishment. Kids need routine or structure and don’t throw out punishments if you cannot follow it through.
  • Put younger children in time out and for older kids grounding is always a good place to start. Give them extra chores to do or send them to bed early.  
  • Talk to your children and be honest with them about what you expect from them and their behaviour. Don’t shout or roar at your children as this is scaring them and not good behaviour on your part.
  • Listen to your children and accept that they may have a point sometimes. Sure, you may not always agree with them, but you should listen to them so that they will come to you in the future when they need advice or help.
  • Kids need stern parents, but they also need loving and consistent parents who will forgive them for mistakes and show them the way to be a better child and of course, an adult. 
Written by Emma Hayes, Staff Writer, with Family Friendly HQ.

Emma Hayes

Emma Hayes is a busy mum to two girls aged 17 and 11 and is married to her childhood sweetheart.

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