Most parenting today is driven by the desire to make children happy and give them a pain free life. This is a tragic mistake because it will make their children unable to handle pain or tolerate stress. It also sets them up for a multitude of character issues. One of the ways in which one can fall into this trap is taking away natural consequences. For example, one of our kids left their jacket in a taxi yesterday. My kids are constantly leaving things everywhere they go so we are now making them pay for the things that they lose. Now this is not a small task since replacing a jacket is expensive. I am paying him the same rate as our maid if he works as hard as she does (which isn't easy because she is an extremely hard worker) but at that rate he will have to work about 7 hours. This isn't easy for me either because I have to find him jobs and supervise them instead of letting him play when he has free time which then cuts into my own free time. Which is part of the problem- good parenting is just time consuming and inconvenient. I often encounter parents here that feel I am being too harsh with my kids and are shocked that we would make our kids pay for their jackets. I feel sad because often the kids of these parents are very disrespectful to other adults and children. It is sad to me because it feels like they should be aware that this type of consequence is what their children actually need to grow and mature into loving and respectful adults.
Here is an excerpt from a book I am reading "A Parent's Guide to Gifted Children"
"One of the hardest aspects of parenting is to allow natural consequences to occur. First, it requires a parent to refrain from a lecture, which is difficult, and next, it involves standing back to allow your child to fail or feel hurt or loss. The value of natural consequences is clear, but for parents, it is extremely difficult to avoid "rescuing" the child. "False rescue" is the biggest challenge to allowing natural consequences to occur. Clearly, there are times when our children our truly in danger and we must rescue them, but false rescue does not allow the child to learn natural consequences."
He puesto aquí un extracto de un libro que estoy leyendo "Guía para Padres sobre los Niños Superdotados"
"Uno de los aspectos más difíciles de la crianza es permitir que las consecuencias naturales se produzcan. En primer lugar, exige que los padres se abstengan de una conferencia, que es difícil, y luego, se trata de dar un paso atrás para permitirle a su hijo fallar o sentirse herido o con una pérdida . El valor de las consecuencias naturales está claro, pero para los padres, es muy difícil evitar "rescatar" al niño. El "rescate falso", es el mayor reto para permitir que las consecuencias naturales se produzcan. Evidentemente, hay momentos en que nuestros hijos están realmente en peligro y hay que rescatarlos, pero el falso rescate no permite que el niño aprenda las consecuencias naturales. "