- Family and Parenting
Poor Parenting and Poor Parenting Skills result in Children Acting Badly
Before Reading This Hub
If you are the parent of an adolescent who is acting out my heart goes out to you. As parents we can only teach our children how they should act, we can't make them do anything. When a child reaches adolescence they and they alone choose their behavior good or bad. The best parents in the world can do the greatest job imaginable, but ultimately the consequences for an adolescents behavior lies at their feet and their feet alone. This hub in NO WAY is directed to parents of adolescents-it is directed at the parents of the uncontrollable elementary school children who deserve the care and guidance a GOOD parent provides.
I recently read an article from my hometown paper about a seven year old boy who had been ticketed for assaulting a younger boy. The older child told police he hit and choked the younger boy because he wouldn't give him a toy. Turns out this isn't the first time the little darling has physically attacked another child, he has a history of bullying younger children in the neighborhood, and his father has a history of not doing anything about it. The boy's own mother told police that the youngster has been terrorizing his brothers and sisters when he comes to visit (The boy lives with his father next door to mom). When neighborhood parents finally had enough of his behavior and the uncaring attitude of his father they called police, and after speaking to Dad the police decided to give the bugger a ticket. Now Dad gets to take junior to court and explain to a judge why his son is a bully and why he hasn't done anything to correct the boy's bad behavior.
When a young child is bad-the blame for his behavior rest squarely on the shoulders of the parents. Don't get me wrong, I'm not talking about adolescent children in this hub-teenagers naturally act out and do stupid things when they get into junior high and high school. Even teens from good homes who have caring parents may become brain dead and make bad decisions and choices when their hormones kick into overdrive.
I'm talking about young children. The ones that are in daycare, preschool, and elementary school. The ones who blindly follow the examples set by the adults in their lives who are entrusted with their care. The ones who can't make decisions for themselves and rely on their caretakers for everything from food to shelter to clothing to medical attention, and love. These are the troubled kids that I am talking about in this hub. When these kids act out the responsibility for their actions lies directly with the parents. The parents have either done something to damage the child, are neglecting to do something for the child, or are doing something to encourage or reinforce the child's negative behavior.
Parents Who Knowingly Damage Their Children
With the wealth of information that is available today regarding the negative effects that alcohol, smoking, and illegal drugs have on the development of babies in utero you would think that expecting mothers would refrain from knowingly exposing their unborn children to the risks. Unfortunately, many expecting mothers not only expose their unborn children to these vices, they actually get their babies addicted to them and create lifelong physical, learning, and behavior issues for their youngsters.
Women who drink alcohol during pregnancy put their child at risk of being born with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. You can easily spot kids with this issue, they have smaller eye openings, their faces are flat, they have thin upper lips, and the groove between their nose and lip is undeveloped. These children suffer from brain damage which manifests itself in a myriad of different health issues including but not limited to: hyperactivity, poor impulse control, reactive detachment disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, anxiety disorders, and mental retardation. The child and all those around him will suffer for years-just because his/her selfish mother couldn't abstain from drinking while she was pregnant.
The use of illegal drugs has devastating effects on the developing fetus which leads to children with serious health, behavioral, academic, and social problems. Children who's mother used methamphetamine during pregnancy suffer from a myriad of problems including: mental retardation, attention deficit disorder, severe muscle stiffness and tremors, low speech abilities, and poor academic performance. These children may appear normal on the outside, they have all 10 finger and toes, but they are damaged none the less. I knew a little boy named River who had been born to a meth addicted mother in prison. He was a beautiful little blond hair blue eyed boy, but he suffered from a myriad of issues including adhd, aspergers syndrome, and oppositional defiant disorder. He had severe social issues and was unable to make friends. He had an inability to empathise with anyone and could not understand why a child would hit him after he himself had attacked the other child. River killed his household pets and liked to go to the local Walmart, remove fish from the tanks, and carry them around for days in his pocket. I don't know what happened to River or where he is today, but I do know that he was given a life sentence of misery due to the selfish actions of his birth mother.
Abuse and Neglect
Abuse is self explanatory and comes in many forms. It is absolutely never acceptable to abuse a child in any manner. Recently a teacher in my school reported a child being abused by her father. He had beaten her so severely with a belt her body was covered with bruises and there was a distinct buckle shaped bruise on her shoulder. Her older brother said that she was beaten because her father told her to clean the house an she fell asleep instead. He explained the belt shaped welt simply by saying, "she sat down while my daddy was whooping her." DHS finally interviewed the child 5 DAYS LATER and determined that it was safe to leave her in the home.
This child lives with a father who brings her and her brother to school on an average of 2 days a week. He always has an excuse for why he doesn't get the kids to school-yet the children have told school officials that they don't come because "Daddy wouldn't get up." Her first grade brother is in my class and other children in the class have reported seeing him and his little sister dressed for school and sitting on the front porch-waiting for Pops to get his lazy ass out of bed. When good old dad does finally bring them to school he has the nerve to ask me why his son can't read and is having behavior issues in my class! I tried to reach out to the father numerous times during the year and he always talked a good game about helping his son be successful, but his uncaring, unhelpful actions have succeeded in causing his son's failure. This is the dad that blames other people for his son's poor behavior, points his finger at everyone but himself for his sons academic shortcomings, and will ultimately blame society when his son drops out of school and gets incarcerated.
When parents neglect to set rules and boundaries for their children at home and those children come to school and display unacceptable behavior it is absolutely the fault of the parents. It is the job of the parents to teach their child right from wrong and what is appropriate and what isn't-not societies. When these bad children go into social settings and victimize others it is absolutely the fault of the neglectful parents. Jails all over the country are filled with men and women who were brought up in homes where the adults neglected their basic responsibilities as parents and left it up to society to teach their children right from wrong.
It is unbelievable to me that parents will actually encourage their young children's bad behavior. Sure you may think it's funny the first time your toddler utters "damn", but it isn't ok to encourage the child to do it over and over again. Equally as frustrating to me is the parent who thinks his/her child can do no wrong and actually expects other people to indulge their spoiled brat the way they do. When their child does something wrong these parents want to know what the other children, or teacher, or adult did to make their child act this way. The answer to their query is that THEY are the ones who caused their child to act inappropriately by their bad parenting. It is their fault when their children get into trouble or get hurt for refusing to follow the established rules of society. I'll never forget an incident that happened at one of our local stores. Two children who looked to be about 7 or 8 were zipping up and down the checkout isles while their mother looked on without saying a word. She ignored them as they pulled things off of the shelves and slammed the cooler doors over and over again. Finally when one of the little darlings slipped and ran face first into another shopper's cart the clueless mother spoke up and demanded to know why the other shopper had RUN HER CART into the now bleeding youngster!! ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Mom was finally asked to leave the store with her little hellions when she became verbally abusive with not only the employees of the store but with the customers as well.
The blame for the behavior of bad children of young children can be laid directly at the feet of their parents. Whether they did something to damage the child, didn't provide what the child needed, or encouraged the child's bad behavior the failure of the child to assimilate into becoming a productive member of society is theirs and theirs alone. Being a parent is not easy-it is the toughest job that anyone on this Earth will ever do, and a job that some people should absolutely not be permitted to perform..