Was sitting with someone today and as is prone when any two parents sit together, the discussion veered towards young kids. The person I was sitting with happened to have a young child at home, a child of about 06, and it seemed to be a big reason of concern to this man who was the grandfather – of seeing an unruly child at home and not being able to do anything to discipline the child. There was a lot of reason for concern – for one, the child was already at an age when most basic discipline issues are already part of a routine, when the child is alreay aware of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ behaviour, of basic etiquettes, of how to behave in front of ‘outsiders’, and in general, how to be a well-mannered child.
Having an indisciplined child can be a real problem, one that poses the threat of embarassment for you, while making your child the subject of ridicule and potential rejection by other kids and parents. There may be instances where your child may be conveniently left out of play dates and birthdays, when you see a decrease in the number of friends coming home to play with your child, while instances of your baby being invited to friends’ house goes down visibly. You may wring your hands in despair, talking stern to your child, and sometimes even resorting to means of punishment and hitting. But once you sit down and actually think about it – who is to blame for this situation? Is it really your child, or is it you, the parent, who failed to inculcate the basics of discipline and manners in the little one?