Children at a very young age know how to work parents against one another therefore the parents need to agree on the form of discipline and be consistent. Without proper discipline kids will not develop into proper members of society, they will not be behaved when you take them out in public and if completely uncontrolled could lead to law enforcement activities taken against you and/or your children.
When my children were young, I tried many forms of discipline such as time out, taking privileges away, writing lines, and nothing seemed to be working. Each time I tried these methods, things were fine for a few hours then back to the same old behaviour. I was worried that I was never going to get thru to them what was acceptable behaviour.
One day, in watching the Maury Povich Show about boot camp discipline I wondered if this would work for my children. Now for some parents they may think this technique is harsh and to the extreme, but some parents may feel this is their last resort. I firmly believe that disciplining a child is one of the hardest jobs a parent has to do. For many parents being the authority figure is hard as we love our kids and hate to tell them that they did wrong. I believe a child should listen because they respect their parents NOT because they fear them. My children at times were very disrespectful to their stepfather so we decided to try the at home boot camp. This technique was my last resort. Being a shy person I didn’t want to be paraded in front of a national TV audience with my children and Maury looks like a busy guy, so I created an at home version of the boot camp. I don’t believe in abusive language so in my version I removed the stereotypical yelling in the face of children.
How the At Home Children Boot Camp Works
As we sat on the sofa, we had the children stand in front of us in the middle of the living room. We explained that this behaviour wasn’t acceptable and this was how we decided to address the behaviour. The children would do whatever their stepfather would say almost like the Simon says game. He had them do jumping jacks, or march in one spot clapping their hands and say “I will not disrespect my parents” or “I will not borrow friends toys without asking first.” Each time we would respond, by saying we couldn’t hear the them and to say it louder. We would keep switching the physical activity from marching to jumping jacks to avoid them from becoming exhausted and after approximately fifteen minutes then we would have them stop and discuss what we expected.
The boot camp sessions only had to happen in our home a few times before we saw improvement. The kids started to become respectful of the rules of our home. It was such a success that other parents took notice and asked us for help with doing an at home boot camp with their children. My children are now adults and they still remember the boot camp. This may not be your first choice of discipline, but I will say it was never forgotten by my children.
All children need discipline as they try to test out and are trying to learn what is the acceptable behaviour in the home and what the boundaries of society are. As their parent remember that you also have to be able to live with the punishment. Consistency is important. Always remember to tell your children you love them and your disciplining them so that they will be a success in the long run. I found that when you explained this to your children they had no reason to fear you as their parent and you will have earned their respect.