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Shaming Kids

Unfortunately, many parents discipline their children with shame.

Shaming takes many forms – screaming, name calling, even humiliation. Shaming may produce an immediate change in behavior, but it results in long-term damage to the child. Shame teaches children that their mistakes lead to condemnation instead of support. They learn to avoid embarrassment and humiliation by hiding rather than seeking help. The parent, instead of being a resource for the child to learn and grow, becomes the cause of the child’s pain and isolation.

Whereas effective parenting teaches children that they make mistakes, shame teaches children that they are mistakes. A child who believes they make mistakes will grow and mature. A child who believes they are a mistake will question their value as a person. And when a child doesn’t feel like they’re worth much, their behavior will get worse, not better.

The best approach to parenting is not belittling a child, speaking harshly, or pushing them to do better but coming alongside them in grace and love and helping them to grow.

If you need help in this area of your parenting, our counselors can offer help. Call at 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459) for help.

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