There is a difference between discipline and punishment. When you administer punishment as a parent, you exert your power over your children when they misbehave. Sometimes, people will become angry when it gets time to punish a child and this may not necessarily be the right time to be angry. Discipline, on the other hand, is educating your children by explaining the wrong in their behavior and what the consequences will mean.
Discipline suggests growth in a child. Parents want their children to develop as productive and happy individuals. However, older children, especially in their teen years, will not listen to discipline and hence, punishment is required to get their attention.
Younger children may respond to anger because of fear. However, older children do not respond to their parent’s anger or shouting. In fact, you will find that teenagers will especially do exactly what parents don’t want them to do because they become angry and frustrated with their parent’s way of punishment or discipline. Many parents find it challenging to punish their older children. You cannot use the same punishment for older children that you used when they were young. They are at the stage where they understand more than you give them credit for. Spanking is no longer an option and neither is time out.
During the older years, punishment can be in the form of taking away the child’s freedom of participating in certain activities or depriving the child of certain things that are dear to his or her heart if the child will not listen to the parents. This is a way for the child to manipulate their power and at the same time, teach the child how to be responsible for their actions. However, parents should be consistent when it comes to disciplining and punishing their children.
For example, if your child is not doing well in school, for whatever reason, and you are not getting any kind of improved behavior, you may have to limit your child’s activities including their social life. Taking away your child’s cell phone and removing the television from the room are two major actions that will get your child’s attention. However, to get the best results, you will have to keep the cell phone for at least a week to show the child that you are serious about wanting to see improvements. Talking on the phone is something that a lot of older children enjoy. You should also make sure that the child does not have access to the house phone either.
Explain to your child why you are taking these actions and be sure that the child understands.