Thursday, May 3, 2012

The Controversy of Disciplining Children

Last night on the news and this morning on my morning radio show was a segment about a man who spanked someone else's child. The cliff's notes to the story was that the man was at the vet with his sick cat, who was in a crate, and the boy was at the vet with his mother. The boy kept trying to pet the cat even though the cat's owner told him no. The boy refused to listen and the mother clearly wasn't paying attention to her kid or doing anything to discipline him, so the man spanked him on his butt. The mother immediately called 9-1-1 and had the man arrested and charged with battery. 

While I do not believe in violence as a way to resolve an issue, even with a small child, I do believe that if a parent is not disciplining their child and the said kid is in fact disrespecting someone else (more so an adult than another child), than that person has the right to step in and do something. There are way too many parents these days who just let their kids run around like animals loose from the zoo, which is extremely disrespectful to other people. 

Recent example: I was in Old Navy a few weeks ago and there were these two little boys, probably around 8 or 9 years old, who were literally running around the front of the store, taking soccer balls out of the bin and throwing them and kicking them around. One of the boys threw one at my head. I immediately looked for the child's mother, who was no where to be found. Instead of scolding the child, I told the Store Manager to take action, which of course they did nothing. After five minutes of these crazy kids messing up the front of the store and hitting numerous customers with the balls, the mother finally appeared, grabbed one of them by the arm and dragged him outside (with the unbought ball) and scolded him. I'm guessing the other child wasn't hers as she did nothing to him. I left the store before I could watch it play out anymore. 

I also worked at a nice restaurant in Boca Raton, FL for a summer while I was taking summer classes at the local university. My job as hostess went beyond just greeting and seating customers. I was deemed the unofficial child police. Because this was a nicer family restaurant, the manager was keen on ensuring that all child were kept under control. If a child was screaming for more than a minute without being escorted outside, I would go over to the parent and ask them to step outside while the child calms down. If a kid was running around the restaurant unsupervised and disturbing the other guests, I would have the child show me where their parents were sitting and ask them to either keep their child at their table/booth or they would have to take their food to-go. Is this mean? Maybe. But it definitely made the restaurant enjoyable for the other customers, as well as kept the staff sane, as well as safe from accidentally running over a child while delivering hot food to a guest. 

Don't let this be your kid
The biggest issue I have with children these days isn't the actual child, but rather the parent who refuses to take responsibility for their child's behavior and discipline him/her. What is the old saying, "It takes a village to raise a child"? So good for this man who was trying to teach the little boy who was disrespecting the authority of an adult by doing the complete opposite of what was asked of him and showing the kid that there are consequences for disobeying rules. And shame on the mother for not being a mother and keeping her kid under control while out in public. 

Friends with parents, please don't be THAT parent who ignores their kid while out in public, while the rest of the public looks at the child like he/she should be put on a leash with a muzzle over their mouth.  If you don't want your kid disciplined by anyone but you, than do it yourself! 


Great investment

1 comment:

  1. Amen! Let me say it again... AMEN!!! Seriously. I've told friends and relatives of mine time and again that if either my kids misbehaves, they (the friends and relatives) have every right to discipline him or her. For the most part, I do not condone spanking, so that's off limits, but redirects, firm talking-tos, time-outs, etc, are all fair game. My kids need to learn to exist in society; society has rules and kids need to learn they are accountable to more than just their core families.

    As for kids running rampant in restaurants, don't even get me started.