WE LOVE TO SCOLD!
The study on Family Structure in Turkey, co-conducted by Turkish Statistical Institute (TURKSTAT) and the Ministry of Family and Social Policies, revealed that families preferred “scolding” their children as a means of punishment. Fathers with children aged 7 – 13 scold their children at 13.2% frequently. 46.2% of the fathers, however, prefer to scold their children occasionally. Mothers, on the other hand, scold their children at 21.8% frequently and 48.6% sometimes.
The experts state that many parents experience difficulties in trying to cope with problems regarding their children, and even though punishments work in the short-run, they don’t prove to be effective when it comes to creating behavior change in children in the long-run. Songül Özgün, Lecturer, Child Development Program, Vocational School of Health Services, Izmir University of Economics, who commented on the study results, said, “Young children especially are in conflict with their parents about eating, paying attention, and studying. Parents choose to deal with these issues via punishment. However, even though punishments work in the short-run, they don’t prove to be effective when it comes to creating behavior change in children in the long-run.”
Scolding would result in reinforcing the unwanted behavior, said Özgün and she stated the following:
“If we want to avoid causing unwanted behaviors in children, we need to establish a good communication with them to begin with. Parents usually tell their children what not to do in order to change an inappropriate behavior. Since young children process concrete thinking, they tend to do the unwanted behavior. For example, if you tell the child ‘not to jump on the couch’, next thing he/she will do will be jumping on the bed instead of the couch. Therefore, you need to be clear about what you want your children to do instead of what not to do. Please note that there will not be immediate change in child’s behaviors. Allow him/her time to do the appropriate behavior.”
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