Sunday, 8 November 2009

Tough love 'is good for children'

Children brought up according to "tough love" principles are more successful in life, according to a study.

The think tank Demos says a balance of warmth and discipline improved social skills more than an laissez-faire, authoritarian or disengaged upbringing.

It says children aged five with "tough love" parents were twice as likely to show good character capabilities.

Report author Jen Lexmond said: "It is confidence, warmth and consistent discipline that matter most." Read more
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1 comment:

Gary M Unruh MSW LCSW said...

Confidence, warmth, and consistent discipline. Thanks Jen Lexmond for nailing down the three most critical parenting aspects. According to your research, when parents provide consistent discipline and warmth, their child will develop self-confidence, good character and experience a successful life. Based upon nearly forty years as a child mental health counselor, I can attest to the findings of this most important research. Here’s some addition straight-from-the-therapist-office information about confidence, warmth, and consistent discipline.
Here’s a central parenting rule that has emerged after seeing over 2500 clients:
Warmth and discipline need to happen at the same time, with warmth being the context of discipline, not the other way around. In my practice, I’ve witnessed a child’s self-confidence always being the result when parental warmth is the continual context of discipline.
-Warmth is fully developed parental love. And fully developed love means focusing on the good within a child during good times as well as difficult times. A child’s life essential need is to feel and believe “I’m good.” The central ingredient to establish this belief: A parent focusing on the good at the center of the child. (It’s a parenting skill that needs to be learned, but with practice warmth happens consistently.)
-Discipline is teaching and training from the perspective that the child is fundamentally good and that unacceptable behavior needs to be continually improved. And the training is best if it is consistent and firm within the context of warmth. Key point: the child is more than his or her behavior. The child must believe: “My behavior is only a part of who I am. I am fundamentally good even when I make a mistake.” With this belief the child will develop self-confidence.
For more details on this approach refer to the new book Unleashing the Power of Parental Love and the web site: