Sunday, July 27, 2008
Is bribery, when used to discipline children - Okay?
I'm pretty sure that bribery is not mentioned as an appropriate technique to discipline children ... in any Good Parenting books or magazines.
I DON'T CARE!
I have been known to use bribery - MANY, MANY TIMES, over the course of the past 16 years in the raising of my kids.
"If you be really good at Aunt Ruth's house - I'll get you some candy."
"If you and your brother go all day without fighting - I'll pay each of you $5.00."
"If you go tinkle on the potty - I'll get you some candy."
I've used candy A LOT over the years!
I'm not against bribery.
Kids eventually KNOW you are bribing them - eventually, they get it! And ... they play you.
But ... I still use it.
I try different tactics.
"Every time you scream at your brother, I am going to go into your room and take one of your toys."
That day - I had a pile of Alexis' toys in my bedroom that would have filled a pretty large toy box. Guess who had to put all those toys back - ME. I don't use this one much. As long as there are still toys left in their room - they are happy! They assume you couldn't possibly take all of their toys. This one doesn't work so well, unless you resort to taking IPODs or X-Boxes - which I HAVE DONE!
I have found that bribery works about 1/2 the time.
Any tool that has a success rate of 50% is a GOOD TOOL - in my book. That means I've got a 50/5o shot of getting the result I want.
I'm okay with that.
I guess people could argue that you shouldn't teach your children that they can get something through bribery, and you know what - they'd be right. I don't ever want to see any of my kids using bribery with one of their friends to get something they want.
I prefer to think of it as ... negotiating.
Alexis says, "I'll play on the trampoline with you if you swim with me after."
Yes - I prefer thinking of it as NEGOTIATING!
This is one tool that works often enough to ... keep it in my arsenal - whether you call it bribery or not.
This is JUST how I raise my children - what do you think? Do you use bribery when it comes to disciplining your kids or ... are you On The Flipside?
Give me your most honest opinion - whether you agree with me or have a FLIPSIDE view. But, please make sure you follow the comment rules and be nice to me and other commenter's. And please go over to my sidebar and answer the survey question on this topic.
Edited: Poll results - 21 took poll. 9 (39%) Yes. 14 (60%) Sometimes. 0 voted No.