Are we raising killer kids?
Violent teen attacks on the DC Metro transit , fatal and savage stabbings among teenagers and young adults (namely the Henri Pratt incident) on our streets and in homes, increased gang activity, bullying, increased suicide due to cyberbullying and sexuality conflict, kids killing their parents, teenagers murdering their classmates out of spite or jealousy, increased drug use, teen drunk drivers, beating elders….WHAT IS GOING ON within our society that children and youth feel that they have to go to these lengths to “resolve” issues?
Written by: Deltonia N. Shropshire, MA
Engage in productive activities with your children
• Get away from the TV , hand helds and computers
• Read to infants and toddlers.
• Hide the Wii and get outside and ACTIVELY engage with family and friends. Manipulated video games will never replace one on one interactive social skill development.
*Get involved with school meetings, functions and activities.
*Participate in Parent Education courses, classes and workshops that will help retool your parenting toolbox.
Properly Socialize The Young
SAY NO! It is more than acceptable to tell your children “NO”. As a matter of fact it is necessary in building ethics within children. “No you cannot have this right now, you have to earn it” is in fact the message that kids need to receive to prepare them for a world filled with rejection. When told “NO” by someone else the resolve on behalf of the child will be: “ok, so how can I find a way to get what I need without impacting someone else?”.
Parents are too willing to give children and youth whatever they want without any negotiation. Young people must learn the value of work ethic through demonstrated, tried and true examples of emotionally, and yes even physically WORKING through situations.
Rejection is not a bad thing, if proven in small increments throughout a child’s life that they can find practical solutions then they can inevitably build a resistance and learn to fend for themselves rather than resort to criminal behaviors to get what they think they ought to have in the time that they think they ought to have it.
The world does not revolve around the demands of children, nor should we be unintentionally conveying that non-verbal message to our young.
As babies-it is vital that parents speak to their children in a loving manner. It is also equally important to establish behavioral boundaries as early as two-three months old.
Create an environment that cultivates trust and encourages the respectful, free spirited child to navigate the world without fear. Imparting an awareness of certain dangers establishes trust between the parent and the child. For example, if the parent keeps dropping the child and causing pain, then the child will be less likely to attach with that parent or care giver and less likely to trust the careprovider and the rest of the biosphere from which the child draws social skill development.
Discipline The Children
Children must have discipline, guidance and correction. Letting children and youth do whatever they want to do is not an option.
The arguement that “not killing the spirit” of a child nor “creating resentment” have immobilized modern parents. The heads of households have opted to take a hands off approach when raising their children.
Granted many parents are working several jobs to keep the household afloat. Many parents are often working without a partner or in a situation where the partner is not a viable contributor to the home, which in turn causes stress on the single provider. The stress then causes irritability and in many cases depression. The lack of interest is then projected onto the child or children in the home who still need their nurture, guidance and attention.
It has not helped matters that municipalities have inserted themselves into the child rearing practices of most American families.
The debate as to whether corporal punishment within households continues to be a case by case matter-largely contingent upon whether judges agree or disagree with the force a parent uses on their children or other youngsters when exacting discipline.
The arguement among leading child care agencies is that spanking a child is a temporary fix to a problem and that striking a child out of anger and frustration is sending a bad message to the developing child. The point is well made; however, there is disagreement in whether or not the discipline strategy is more effective in certain cultures. There is also reason to challenge the notion that it is a “temporary solution to the problem”, when learned conditioning is the particular methodology.
A child who receives a spanking/discipline/correction for an undesired behavior is far less likely to revisit the same behavior in a manner consistent with the last “unsuccessful” effort. The child will in most cases, formulate a new way to revisit the same situation to achieve a different account, in most cases the desired end result that is more conducive to the socializers requirements.
At its most basic level- reasonable corporal punishment is a very strong behavior modification tool, used to cause children to THINK about their actions and the consequences that the action may cause before they cause damage or an unfavorable outcome. This method is a last resort and is not the ONLY form of discipline.
The discipline technique selected for every household is different. Historically-corporal punishment was not an issue in homes that were headed by persons of color.
Children and Youth need Positive Outlets
Sports, music, drama, technical skill development (cooking, mechanics, gardening, etc.) are all viable considerations when selecting extra curricular activities for children and youth.
Having children and youth participate in these types of engaging activities teach them how to cultivate and utilize strong social skills with others, as well as help shapes strong character. Unfortunately with the insurgence of technology, kids are less active and less socially intelligent. The person to person interface has been significantly reduced and therefore kids are being hindered from learning proper human development.
Engage in Effective Communication with your Children.
Stop talking at them and speak with them. Make a solid effort to understand their concerns, and future. Sit down, turn off all things that would distract and provide them with the attention that they deserve.
Children and youth need us to reinsert ourselves back into their existence. The parents, guardians and care-providers must reclaim their roles as household leaders and stop letting children assume their duties. The youngest members of our society are not able to have a childhood because they are being forced to grow up faster than they ought. There are images conveying that increased sexuality is popular. Girls and boys being raised without fathers are engaging in activities that are sexually recreational rather than fundamentally rooted in anything that will sustain a lasting relationship later.
Go to church. Find “safe harbors” where communal raising is common place. Church often offers other activities such as choir, youth ministry, and other service opportunities that would afford bonding.
Train the children in the way that they should go, so that when they get old enough to appreciate the lessons, they will not depart from them!
The adults must do alot of soul searching and put some love back into their homes in order to see any marked improvement in the behavioral displays of those set to run this world.
Special Guests included: Mr. Worthy, Esquire and Mr. Mark Sturdivant- Vice Principal at Ceasar Chavez Public Charter School
INSPIRED BY THESE HEADLINES (to name a few):
HENRI PRATT, fatally stabbed 27 times
Florida boy kills parents and then throws a party
Twins murder their mother in ATL
Boy commits suicide because he was bullied at school
Teens violently attack man in the metro station
Teens violently attack on the metrobus
Pack of teens jailed in the murder of their classmate because the victim was dating the killers “crush”; decapitated and burned the body
UVA attack; Boy brutally kills girlfriend
Boy kills girlfriend over Facebook status