Is public humiliation an acceptable punishment for children?

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  1. ChristinS profile image51
    ChristinSposted 3 years ago

    Is public humiliation an acceptable punishment for children?

    was a story of a guy who caught his son being a bully, then made his kid hold a sign listing his punishments and posted it on Facebook - it went viral.  People are justifying this saying it will teach his son a lesson.  Yes, perhaps - but at what cost? Do we teach kids not be bullies by bullying them back with public humiliation? Why do these things go viral and why do people think these parents are "brilliant" in their approach to discipline?  A kid who is a bully is already damaged - how is damaging them more publicly supposed to help? I was both bullied & abused and I can't see the logic.

  2. fpherj48 profile image79
    fpherj48posted 3 years ago

    Christin....This made me cringe.  I did not actually SEE it, but your description is enough for me.  I find the method these parents chose to be "cruel & inhuman."  Simply put, I agree with your comment about this being an irrational choice of punishment.  I strongly disagree that "this will teach the child a lesson."   It MAY teach him/her a lesson, but it will not be the lesson parents should be aiming at. If this child gave another child a bloody nose, would these same parents harm their child physically until it caused his nose to bleed?......(That question is NOT exaggerated! THINK, people.)
    Replace the word, "punishment" with "discipline," which refers to a teaching moment.  Then in an opposite and more appropriate effort, you may wish to have this child wear a sign that says, "I want to share kindness with my peers....FREE smiles & lollipops!"......then allow him to walk in a park or other busy area, smiling and passing out lollipops.  He/she may hate doing this, but THIS will teach them a positive lesson in an appropriate light.  There's also a good possibility the experience will teach them that being kind, feels good.

    1. ChristinS profile image51
      ChristinSposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Paula, I couldn't agree more and I like your approach better - to teach that kindness feels good, as opposed to adding more shame and misery to an already obviously struggling person.

  3. profile image67
    win-winresourcesposted 3 years ago


    If the son in question is a child (say, 15 or less) then this sort of public shaming is likely to be counter productive.  If, however, the person involved is old enough to understand and be fully responsible for his/her actions, then the sting of public disapproval may not be wasted.

    Wearing the scarlet letter ('B' in this case) at least alerts those around to the danger of associating with such a person.

    1. ChristinS profile image51
      ChristinSposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I agree there should be consequences for actions. In this particular case, the boy was 15 - old enough to know better certainly. There are numerous "public shaming" things viral on the internet though and I think it is counterproductive.

  4. profile image0
    TheBizWhizposted 3 years ago

    I haven't seen this, but I agree with you that it is not a good idea. I am not a psychologist, but I just don't see how any good can come from it; only resentment.

    1. ChristinS profile image51
      ChristinSposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I'm with you. This is not a situation where "fighting fire with fire" is going to work - at least I don't see how. I can see it reinforcing more bad behavior though.

    2. profile image0
      TheBizWhizposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      That's right. The bullying usually starts at home, so now we know where the kid gets it from.

  5. peachpurple profile image82
    peachpurpleposted 3 years ago

    his dad is being a big bully too. He is using the wrong method to teach his son about rectifying mistakes. His son will take this public humiliation a big issue and become worse instead.

    1. ChristinS profile image51
      ChristinSposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I totally agree that it's likely to make the bullying behavior escalate ultimately.

  6. Ali Dawn R profile image60
    Ali Dawn Rposted 3 years ago

    I agree with you. Psychologically, these children have been damaged in some way and humiliating them in public only compounds that. Granted, I was corporally punished as a child in public but that taught me respect for my family and parents and to represent the image of my family dutifully in social situations. I've been raised to be polite and help other people. Kids who are humiliated will only see this as an educational tool.

    1. ChristinS profile image51
      ChristinSposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Agreed. I think people mistake discipline and punishment. Discipline is positive and instills lessons and morals.  Punishment is demeaning and devalues the target. Discipline teaches respect - not humiliation.

  7. Ericdierker profile image47
    Ericdierkerposted 3 years ago

    Christin, your example is a very stark example of the cycle of abuse that is too prevalent in our society today. It seems rather clear that the parent was "showing off" as to how he is such a smart punisher. Clearly this child's bullying is home grown and we can only hope that somehow the child stops the cycle of abuse. Holding someone up to public ridicule is bullying, at least by any reasonable interpretation. So this guy is bullying to prevent bullying - good luck with that nonsensical approach.
    I would bet ten to one that this guy was bullied by his father.

    1. Ali Dawn R profile image60
      Ali Dawn Rposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I appreciate your candor and on-par analysis of the situation with the child.

    2. ChristinS profile image51
      ChristinSposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Totally agree.  Narcissism on part of the father to have to do this publicly for praise from the public. In stark contrast to the reasonable answers here - people on that page were praising his "amazing" parenting skills and I was astonished!


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