Tag Archives: violence

Forgiveness

Forgiveness

In my course “A New School Approach to Anger in the Family,” I have concentrated a great deal on the dynamics of anger, how our own thoughts cause our anger, how our own thoughts create the pain that underlies our anger, and how we need to be able to communicate with those we are angry at or who are angry at us. Bruised and hurt ego, the “little me,” and the thought patterns it identifies with, are the source of both our anger and the underlying pain, since we take things personally that are said and done to us.

I have stressed in this course that we cause our own pain and our own anger at others, and that these are rooted in our expectations and our interpretations of others’ behavior toward us. Although I realize this is not a position that is easily adopted by everyone, I am convinced that there is real self-empowerment in this position. In his book The Four Agreements, Don Miguel Ruiz urges us (as one of the agreements) to take nothing personally. I wholeheartedly subscribe to this counsel, and I encourage all of you to give this wonderful little book your serious consideration.

At the same time, I also recognize that it is true that we have all been hurt by others in very real ways that are not simply insults that we have taken personally when we didn’t need to do that. The hurt inflicted may have been intentional or not intentional, recent or long ago, physical, emotional, or financial, or any number of other possibilities. For this reason, it is imperative that in any course on anger we consider the mysterious and perhaps scary topic of forgiveness. Continue reading

Violence in the Home Encourages Violence in the Street

Violence in the Home Encourages Violence in the Street

How can physical punishment or beating my child now result in his/her bullying, beating, attacking, or killing someone on the street 10, 15 or 20 years from now?

1. Physically punishing (spanking, beating, whipping) a child teaches him that violence is how you solve problems with someone smaller or weaker than you are.

  • The parent: “I’m hurting you because I love you.”
  • The child: “If you can hurt someone you love, I can hurt someone I love, too.”
  • If it’s okay to hit/hurt someone you love, it’s surely okay to hit/hurt someone you dislike or hate.
  • If it’s okay to teach a child a lesson by hitting, s/he learns it’s okay to teach someone a lesson by hitting.
  • If it’s okay to punish disrespect by hitting/hurting, s/he learns it’s okay to punish disrespect by hitting/hurting.
  • What goes around, comes around. You get back what you give out.

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The Problems with Punishment

The Problems with Punishment

Punishing children creates a number of problems, which, when taken together, can be both serious and counterproductive. In general, punishments are an invitation to trouble, and often carry with them significant, unintended, negative consequences. Punishments should therefore be avoided with all children, no matter their age. There are better ways than punishments for dealing with children’s unacceptable behavior. More about that later. First, let’s consider some of the problems with punishments.

Let Me Count the Ways

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