An article by Bonnie Foshee Parenting
the Strong-Willed Child and Keeping the Upper Hand
our previous newsletter #81 has definitely struck the nerve of many
frustrated by their adoptive child's behavior parents. No wonder: post-orphanage
behavior, typical child's desire to control the situation, lack of experience
on the parent's side, the consequences of various daily stresses, the
lack of understanding of each other's language and culture are just
a few triggers of family battles that are present and greatly amplified
for the families with the internationally adopted children. The article
received high marks (4.8 out of 5 - average) from some readers and strong
disapproval from the others. Here are some messages we received right
after its publication:
I am really upset
about the discussion (or lack thereof ) about spanking. There are many
know harmful effects of spanking to the spirit and most of all to the
relationship between parent and child. And I can't emphasize enough
the negative impact of spanking on a child adopted from elsewhere who
is older than an infant, and spent time in a possibly abusive setting
before coming here. Please, reconsider those articles you print (and
seem to support) that form of so-called discipline or punishment. Think
of the cartoon of the father spanking his son with a hairbrush, while
intoning, "this will teach you to hit someone smaller than yourself";
let alone, "this hurts me more than it hurts you". I have
recommended your site to my clients, and am having second thoughts now.
Hope you give this topic another look.
Co-Director, After Adoption
As a professional
working for a private, nonprofit international adoption agency I was
a little taken aback by some of the statements in Bonnie Foshee's article
regarding the "benefits" of spanking. While indeed, it is
a disciplinary practice that many families continue to use, there are
not many adoption professionals who would advocate the use of such a
model in disciplining children. In fact, home study reports of adoptive
parents must address the issue of discipline and document that the family
will not use physical methods of discipline in raising their child.
for the opportunity to comment.
Nancy R. Thompson
We see our goal in publishing articles about
children and parenting in challenging minds and sharing experiences
of parents and professionals in search of the right way to approach
issues - not in dispensing ready-made advice which would never be adequate
for each and every situation.
Bringing up an orphanage child
is no simple task; and, given a terrible statistic of a dozen of children
being killed by their adoptive parents in the US (significantly more
than in any other adoptive country - why is that?), it is very important
that current and potential parents would really think hard on their
own and be honest in estimating their abilities of parenting an orphanage
Thus, we do not necessarily agree or disagree with the
authors of published articles: we choose them for the ability to give
readers the impulse to think, to argue, to consider their own positions
and come to their conclusions. Below are several articles from our database
with different approaches to the same issue-managing your child's behavior.
Direnfeld, MSW, RSW
In the course of normal
childhood behaviour and misdeeds, while there is nothing necessarily
wrong with helping a child to understand simple motivations and rules
through discussion, dont be mistaken that this alone will deter
misdeeds. Further, seeking understanding alone may actually precipitate
a cascade of more troublesome behaviour as shown above. To really manage
your childs behaviour, hold your child accountable to reasonable
expectations and provide a consequence. The consequence may be as simple
as your clearly voiced disapproval, a brief loss of privilege or time
away from a preferred activity. Think of being caught for speeding.
The officer may discuss with you the wrong of your offense, but will
surely still give you the ticket. Its a short discussion. Lesson
learned, now on your way.
Dr. Noel Swanson
is the key to eliminate child behavior problems
want to achieve success in child discipline, they must inculcate the
virtue of consistency. It is the most important thing especially for
parents that have issues regarding child discipline. It is true that
it is not easy to remain consistent all the time. After all, you are
human beings with normal human failings. And, children can be absolutely
exasperating at times. So, you can only aim at achieving consistency,
but it is worth making all the effort because it has good effect on
your children and you can teach them the basic norms of good behavior
with good results.
Direnfeld, MSW, RSW
of Control and Pseudomature Teens
the parents hold their teen accountable to reasonable parental expectations,
change is unlikely. However, parents feel like they are held hostage.
As the teen protests against newly imposed expectations, in the face
of prior freedom, they at best complain and at worse fight back. Their
protesting behaviour can be verbal and even physical. They will try
to argue, guilt their parents, threaten their property or person and
threaten to run away. In the face of the teens escalation, many
parents again acquiesce and the teen says, Ive got em.
And they do.
an Angry Kid: The Secret to Getting the Respect You Deserve
answer to a parent's question: The challenge we have is with our 12
year old. When corrected she will argue her point of view until the
bitter end. Our point is never taken into account and it usually ends
in a long drawn out yelling match. If you don't agree with her point
of view, she doesn't feel heard nor understood and then becomes defensive
and does not even listen to our side. We say black, she says white.
My parenting question is how can we prevent family yelling matches and
resolve issues with control and authority?)