Discipline is a natural part of being a father. Like it or not. I don’t know of a father that doesn’t struggle with this reality. As fathers we want to teach our children right from wrong but at the same time we don’t want to be “big fat meanies” Add to that, the natural feeling men have that they might be acting too hard on people they love and you have a collection of emotions that can lead any caring father astray.
So what is a dad to do? Well first off you need to start thinking of discipline as a guide or an educational act rather than a form of punishment and realize it is your job to be the overall teacher for your child. Teachers at school can teach our kids about the 3 R’s but it is up to us to teach our kids about life.
Children want structure and rules in their lives, it is part of what makes them feel safe and secure and children have a need to feel safe and secure. Oh sure, they aren’t going to like being disciplined and they will cry and whine, you might even get the occasional “I hate you” but you can’t take it personal. Just like you say things in the heat of the moment that you may not really mean, or you feel sorry for later, children do the same thing just they don’t have the experience and restraint we do to control it most of the time.
Some helpful tips are:
- Explain to your child why they are in trouble and why they are being punished
- Make sure the punishment fits the crime
- After the punishment is served make sure you let them know how much you love them
- Make sure you and mom agree on the discipline and are on the same page, sharing the burden of discipline
If you just keep these few suggestions in mind you will be able to teach your children the difference between right and wrong and be able to hand out punishment, when its needed, in a fair and loving way.
Good Luck Super Daddy!