“The ramblings and grumblings of author Ad Hudler”

Parenting 101: A word about "Modern Family"
Friday, October 22, 2010

... the funny TV show that I like. In this week's episode, Claire, the mother, is frustrated with her family's addiction to electronic devices, and she declares a week-long moratorium on anything electronic. No computers, no cell phones, nothing. Phil, her dim-witted husband, promises his oldest daughter that he will buy her a car if she can make it through the week, assuming that she won't be able to last that long.

Well, guess what? She does. And then, as they so often do, Claire and dim-witted husband don't follow through with their promise. They NEVER follow through with their promises or threats with their children.

In reality, kids with parents like this turn out to be big problems. I've seen it with friends of my daughter. The parents are all about threats and they are horrible on follow-through, so the children know no consequences. So they start pushing and testing, misbehaving in a big way to see if anything they do will have consequences. Children WANT consequences. They want to know parents are watching and that they will punish them if they do something wrong. It gives them a feeling of security.

Phil and Claire: Buy the girl her damned car. YOU PROMISED. If you don't, your words will be empty and meaningless to her, and she will cease listening to you.


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