Unnatural consequences revisited

How viewing other people as wilful perpetrators embodies the mistaken theory that problems are not soluble, and thus can interfere with problem-solving and result in our beloved children being distressed.

Parental rules mess up children’s thinking

Life is not black and white, but rules are. Punishments try to make the world fit into the categories of black and white but kids judge that there are greys anyway.So we help our children learn about those greys instead of just ignoring them they way many parents do. Iit leads to safer children.

Unnatural consequences

So-called ‘natural consequences’ are a strategy for coercively controlling children while pretending not to be responsible for and intentionally imposing the coercion.

Why giving children rules and boundaries is a mistake

Children are not born knowing the truth, so we should tell children our best theories, explain why we advocate certain forms of behaviour and not others, and try to persuade them through reason of the truth of our own ideas, but not coerce, manipulate or in any way pressurise them into enacting our theories. For our theories may be false: even becoming a parent does not confer infallibility upon us!

Punishing children using so-called natural consequences

The natural consequence of breaking something is that you have a broken thing. What happens after that is something someone or other decides. Describing making the child pay as a ‘natural consequence’ is at best misleading.

“There are some issues on which I am authoritarian”

Coercion is stressful because it conflicts with most people’s wider ideas about morality, human relationships, and how to run a society, etc. Unless one mentions children or parenting, everyone agrees that consent-based solutions are better that coercion every time. That theory is held on some level by most people. They just suppress it in their parenting.

Time out is not taking time out

There is a difference between sitting on a chair to relax, and enforced sitting on a chair. Or is being strapped in the electric chair also not a punishment?

Mistakes and what to do about them

When, despite having had the benefit of our best arguments, our children don’t agree, that is when we should start questioning our own arguments, not just assuming it is the child’s that is wrong.