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Child Discipline
And Parenting Style

You may find child discipline to be the most challenging aspect of raising your child.

Child discipline

But when you consider that disciplining your child is really teaching him self discipline or self control, you will often see your role as more of a teacher than as a police officer.

Discipline is teaching your child socially acceptable behaviour by setting limits and expectations for his behaviour and enforcing consequences when those behaviours aren't met.

As a parent you will often find the need to set discipline guidelines by the time your child reaches 2 years old. Child discipline typically fluctuates between reinforcement and punishment.

You can reinforce your child’s positive behaviour with rewards, which can be anything from a pat on the back to a new pony, depending on your parenting style.

A punishment is something your child finds unpleasant and might include taking away belongings or enjoyable activities, verbal punishments which cause your child to feel guilt or shame, or physical discipline such as spanking.

The degree and consistency to which you punish your child's negative behaviour and reinforce his positive behaviour illustrate your parenting style when it comes to child discipline.

Parenting styles can be divided into four different categories. The degree to which you discipline your child often determines which parenting style you are most likely to use.

Indulgent Parent

An indulgent parent, also called a permissive parent, is very responsive to their children’s needs and is not demanding in terms of discipline.

These parents are often described as lenient, and ignore or refuse to acknowledge when their child is acting inappropriately. Indulgent parents fail to enforce rules, give in to tantrums, and fail to follow through with consequences.

Children who are raised by indulgent parents often lack self control and self reliance and have difficulty getting along with their peers.

They also are not very achievement oriented, and typically grow up doing as they please.

Authoritarian Parent

An authoritarian parent is the opposite of an indulgent parent. They are highly demanding and directive but not responsive. Child discipline from an authoritarian parent is obedience oriented.

These parents place high demands on their children and give harsh consequences. Authoritarian parents frighten and intimidate their children and allow them little freedom.

Children of authoritarian parents can be hostile and uncooperative and generally unhappy.

Authoritative Parent

An authoritative parent is a little of both parenting styles. They set firm but reasonable limits on their child.

Their discipline techniques include setting realistic rules; making them clear and enforcing them consistently. Authoritative parents are affectionate and supportive and are involved in their child’s daily life.

A child raised by an authoritative parent is often friendly, cooperative, self-reliant and self-assertive. These children are highly achievement oriented.

Uninvolved Parent

Uninvolved parents are neither demanding nor responsive. They are uninvolved in their child’s daily life and set and enforce few rules.

Children of uninvolved parents are often left to their own devices, often appearing to raise themselves. These children are often aimless and are not very achievement oriented.

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