Dealing with indiscipline in the home

IKA WEEKLY – The dream of every parent is to bring up children that will bring joy to the family, and add value to the society at large.


It is common to see parents pointing to a good child and say “that is my son, that is my daughter”. Nobody wants to associate with a disobedient or indisciplined child.


This is why parents put in their best to ensure that all the necessary virtues are inculcated into the children.


Inspite of this ‘best’ done by the parents, some children still turn out to be the opposite of the parents’ desires, causing great pain to those who love them especially the parents who feel a sense of guilt for failing in their responsibility.


What should be the parent’s next line of action at this instance? Some of them resort to threatening, severe punishment and other harsh measures to handle the situation.


Some ever resign to fate and simply grumble, complain and ask God, why me? What have l done to deserve this? Where have l gone wrong?


Research and personal investigation have shown that threatening and severe punishment in most cases do not correct a wayward child, instead they make him more hardened and daring.


This is why you hear parents today complain that their wards are getting worse by the day inspite of the punishment meted out to them.


What the adults do not understand is that most rebellious actions exhibited by children have a psychical or emotional undertone.


Majority of the children who are stubborn and disobedient are simply calling for attention. They are in need of love and special care.


The love they need may have nothing to do with money or putting them in good schools. It could just be for a moment of discussion with the parents, or the parents’ simple show of concern about their personal lives.


If you ask these children, some of them will tell you that all they desire is to hear their parents tell them “I love you”, or a simple hug of attention, although peer influence can be another major cause.


As a parent, you need to come down to your child’s level and discuss issues with him, let him know that you truly care about him and that you desire to see him succeed in life, but do not make the mistake of comparing him with either his siblings or other children because that can ruin all your efforts. He is unique, and should be treated so. Do not join other people in calling him names, or using abusive language.


Try to find out why he is behaving the way he does. Ask him and be patient enough to listen to him no matter how ‘insignificant’ his reasons may seem.


You must understand that children have their own expectations of their parents. Find out from him if you as a parent is living to his expectation.


This may sound absurd to some parents, but it is the truth. Children have their expectations of their parents just as parents have for their children.


The problem today is that parents are quick to shout when the children fail them, without finding out if they themselves have failed the children.

It may be a difficult task, but do not give up. Prayerfully do your part and leave the rest to God.

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