Doctor Love: Toddler Mom

Sunday, November 22nd, 2015

Readers, please send your letters. They can be emails, formal letters or handwritten notes. They are edited solely for grammar and spelling. Also, they are sometimes edited for length.Dr-Love

Dear Doctor Love
I am twenty years old and my sister is twenty-nine. She got pregnant when she was fifteen and her oldest son is now fourteen years old. Her son has always been pretty much of a brat because he has always gotten away with anything he does. She does not punish him or reprimand him. In the last two years he has gotten even worse. His grades in school have steadily gone down. He has been kicked out of school for fighting and stealing. Now, he has reached the last straw. He did not come home last Saturday until two o’clock in the morning and my sister was going crazy with fear. She called me to help her look for him but we did not see him until he came home at two a.m. They got into an argument and he hit her. I tried to call the police but she begged me not to. That’s when I decided to leave them alone to sort it out between them.
My son is two years old and I do not want him to grow up like this. Please give me some advice.
/s/ Toddler Mom

Dear Mom,
Parents who do not control their children are as guilty of child abuse as those who beat them unmercifully. Perhaps even more. Right now your sister is locked in a struggle for control with her son. This struggle for control has been going on since the child was born.
The secret to turning children into productive adults is a matter of just rewards. If the child is good, reward him. If he is bad, punish him. However, this must start when the child is as small as yours and continue until it is no longer necessary. Spanking is a tool that should be used if needed as long as it is not excessive. If you start the punishment at an early age by the time he is seven or eight he knows all the rules and will usually obey them instinctively. This is where character and good breeding come from.
A child who gets away with anything they do is in the position of having to raise himself. There is no one to say, “That is wrong,” when it obviously is. The child has no moral compass for guidance. The moral compass is something the parent provides as the most important part of child-rearing. The alternative is to acquire the moral compass in jail or having it beat into him by his peers.

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