Sunday, July 27, 2008

Parenting and discipline

Today was a day at church that was BUSY!! We have VBS this week includes 450 kids and about 150 workers - all of whom I feed for the 5 days this next week. So we were up at church all day and since I woke up really early to a thunderstorm and needing to close the windows, I'm shot! But a couple of things happened today that made up the bulk of the conversations in my family during all of this.

First off, there was a little girl at church who was in the VBS singers group - a group of the little kids who will help to lead the singing each day. My two little ones are in it and my 16 year old went over to high five everyone. She got through the first row then got to the 2nd row where a little girl was sitting talking to another child. She saw Nicole coming and when Nicole got to her, she just stuck out her tongue and folded her arms!! VERY snotty attitude. I've seen this little girl do a number of rude things to other kids and it makes me sad for her, her parents and other kids around her.

Then there was a group of rowdy boys who were running around with a toy gun. It WAS raining outside and they were stuck at church all day so I know they were going buggy but they didn't need to almost knock over a group of people as they ran. They came into "my" kitchen, drank the remainder of the iced tea for the workers (it was getting later so I let them) and then they started shooting the brand new ceiling with the toy gun (that shot suction cup "arrows") just when pastor walked in. He spoke to them and they were actually a little disrespectful to him - enough to that if it were my child, I would have spanked them.

It makes me sad that there are children who seem to not be taught basic manners anymore. These are also children that I've seen be VERY disrespectful to their own parents and the parents not say a THING to them. My 16 year old was saying how she's seen it a lot too and questioned if parents see what's happening or not. I honestly don't know. Do they see it or not? Do they see it and ignore it? Do they see it and don't know how to deal with it? One thing I've learned through raising my 4 kids is that it's very important to have a "vision" for your kids. I'm not talking about seeing them as doctors or teachers but to see what quality you want them to be when they grow up. First and foremost, I want my kids to have a relationship with the Lord, but after that, I really want my kids to be respectful and polite so that's a large focus here. I don't let my kids get away with disrespect or rudeness - not that I spank them every time it happens or punish them but we certainly address it and punish when necessary. It's important enough for me to spend time on this and I can see in my 16 and 18 year olds, it's working. Hey - I can see it in my 5 and 7 year olds too!

I'm certainly not a perfect parent and I've made my mistakes (plenty of them) but this is an area I feel really strongly about and I see that there are benefits paid in being diligent in discipling (not just disciplining) your kids. Know what the goal is and work towards it and you just might be able to get there! LOL!! The Bible says "Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he." (Proverbs 29:18) God has given US the vision of becoming more Christlike and so we can know if we're being successful or not and keep a focus. It's the same with raising our children.


Prairiehomemaker said...


Anonymous said...

Amen Ann.

Thursday's Child said...

Amen! You have to wonder about those parents. Were they never taught proper behavior themselves so as not recognize it themselves? Geez!

Laurie said...

Ahem.....I've actually found the courage to ask a few parents why they tolerate certain behaviors. Their response was that it was too much of a bother to correct their children or they wouldn't listen if they did correct them.

Sorry, I just don't buy that one! It is worth a bother to me, because I often feel that my son's behaviors are a reflection upon me as a parent.

Also, they WOULD listen if you MAKE them listen. Yeah, they really do act like they aren't listening sometimes, but truthfully, my son would listen OR there would be consequences. Afterall, who is the parent? KWIM?

I'm not saying I'm a perfect parent either, because I've made tons of mistakes along the way. BUT, I do know that if you think you're going to get a negative response, most likely you will.


Mom2fur said...

Very sad. I think it's a kind of abuse, really. One day, little miss snotty is going to act like that to a boss and get fired, or (heaven forbid) a cop and get a BIG ticket. I have no problem with kids being kids, but I hate disrespect and just-plain mean-spiritedness!
My four aren't perfect by any means (all adults now, btw) but they will never, ever make you feel unwelcome or unloved! When my now-21-year-old son was little, he was taught to hold doors open for people. Once, he burst out crying because people were using a different door! being kind such a stretch?