From the archives: Posted on 26th October, 1994
“However, it is my money which pays for his dental visits, money which represents my life energy. In the case of watching television and videos, again, it is not simply that he should have the right to choose to watch televsion whenever he wants. When the television is on I have to be willing to have that sound in the house in which I exist also. (We live in a small house, in which I spend a fair amount of time in the living room where the TV is.)”
There may well be times when being non-coercive is inconvenient – but not necessarily more inconvenient than being coercive. A child who hasn’t been coerced has no reason to see adults as adversaries. In my limited experience, non-coerced children are not at all hard to get along with.
Being a parent necessarily involves some inconvenience and sacrifice; it takes time, costs money, etc. Most parents accept that; some parents go to enormous lengths to do what they think will benefit their children. If they did believe that non-coercion was best for their children, many parents would be willing to accept some inconvenience to that end (in addition to the effort required to break away from what they learned from their parents).
- Moving, improving: punishment will not help
- How can we express approval when our children do something good without manipulating them by implying that we would disapprove if they had made a different choice?
- Creativity and untidiness
Kevin Schoedel, 1994, ‘Parents accept costs and inconvenience for their children’, https://takingchildrenseriously.com/parents-accept-costs-and-inconvenience-for-their-children/