The Permissive Style of Teaching Discipline

Experts say none of the parents use pure form of teaching discipline, most fathers and mothers vary in some degree as a result of conflict.

Parents given to an overly permissive style of discipline, by contrast to the authoritarian, are child centered, warm and indulged to the point of rarely exercising any discipline at all on their youngsters.

They believe that the child’s impulses and desire are good because they are natural, and they hope that in allowing the child to express her instincts she will eventually modify her behavior out of her own freewill over a period of time.

They fear that the assertion of parental values will thwart the youngster’s emotional development. They prefer to avoid even mild punishments which are necessary sometimes, out of concern that it will undermine the bond of love in the little one. They tend to see themselves as exemplars of the behavior that they would like their children to adopt.

There is no doubt that the love of such parents for their children is real and that the youngsters revel in it. But mothers and fathers who let their indulgence get out of hand often wind up with the classic spoiled brat- a child who is unable to get on with people outside the family circle. Having never had limits put upon her at home, she can hardly be expected to impose them on herself when she ventures into the outside world.

In cases where parents are too busy or too preoccupied to do anything but give in to their child, a youngster often becomes emotionally insecure. Without the external restraints she needs to give some structure to her life, she feels very vulnerable- an anything-goes policy simply gives your  young child more freedom and power than she can handle. Sometimes when her uncontrolled emotions erupt into tantrums and bouts of destructiveness, the youngster can actually frighten herself.

Some children respond to a lack of parental involvement by running wild and becoming aggressive, self centered and irresponsible, as if to force their parents to pay attention to them. Others deal with their vulnerability by becoming extremely timid or clinging.

geeta krishnan