Safe House discusses how you can parent from a place of emotional safety. Now, for some of you, this may sound like "hogwash." But its a powerful truth. As Mr. Straub states in chapter 7:
"Punishment and discipline are different. Simply put, punishment isn't safe; discipline is. In punishment, we react to misbehavior; in discipline, we respond to it. The short-term outcome of punishment may be obedience, but the long-term outcome of discipline is self-discipline."
I don't know about about you, but I want children who are emotionally healthy and self-disciplined, rather than kids that don't understand how to control their emotions and just blindly obey whatever they're told.
Mr. Straub gives a lot of personal examples in his book - from his childhood, his time as a parent, and other parents and children he knows. I like parenting books that give personal examples like these. It really helps bring home the point the author is trying to make when you see it in a personal story.
I also like Mr. Straub's suggestion on how to handle consequences for a misbehaving child:
"Consequences should be age appropriate, fair, and not overly harsh. We cannot ground our six-year-old for a month or take away television time for the rest of the year. Consequences should also be as natural as possible. Let a child who doesn't do her homework experience the consequences of a poor grade. Let a child who doesn't eat her dinner experience the consequence of being hungry until the next meal. And so forth."
It seems to simple, but we often overcomplicate consequences. We either want to make them harsher than they need to be or we want to rescue our child from them (like making an extra trip to the school to bring them the homework they forgot or giving them cereal at 9pm because they refused to eat dinner).
If you are looking for a book to challenge how you're currently disciplining, check this one out. Its very thought provoking. I definitely will be rethinking some of my parenting strategies.
I received a copy of this book, free of charge, from Blogging For Books, in exchange for my honest review.