I grew up in a household where we were all afraid of my father. Whenever any of us did anything naughty we often saw The BELT. That is what he uses to punish us kids. Although I am the only female child (I have and older and a younger brother), I saw that belt more often growing up than my both my siblings combined. I was one VERY naughty child. Because of this I was never tried to get close to my father, because he welded THE BELT.
I would like to think that I turned out relatively normal, (not a psychopath) and that my father is a good person in spite of the corporal punishment but I always thought that sort of discipline was “alright” because it was the common practice as far as I know. That is until I got the invitation from PETA.
I received the invitation on my Dragon Chatter page for Go Positive! Celebrity Advocates Media Launch about Positive Discipline.
Positive Discipline is an approach to guiding children`s behavior without using any form of violence like spanking, pinching, humiliation and verbal abuse. It is about instilling values of non-violence, empathy, self-respect, human rights and respect for others. Advocates champion positive discipline as a disciplinary method that involves open communication with a child, making sure that the parent-child relationship is rooted on mutual love and respect. It ensures that the child, making sure that the understands the consequences of his action and allows him to make his own decisions, making discipline a matter of deep understanding and going beyond blind obedience.
This is a relatively new concept at least in the Philippine setting, with almost every household considers spanking the “norm”.
So with my son Jarod in tow, we headed to Quezon City Sports Club to attend the Media Launch/ Press Conference.
During the event they posed this question to us. “Does love have to hurt?”
In a culture where people who hit and threaten their children in public, positive discipline is an entirely new concept. How a parent discipline is child is usually seen as a “private matter” where we often look the other way whenever something like this happens before our eyes.
According to PETA and DAKILA, Children who misbehave constantly learn their lessons accompanied by the usual spanking and beating, and through time, these children grow up to be parents themselves and treat their children the same way they were treated by their parents. In a nutshell, it is only a cycle of obedience out of fear.
A child would only do what he is told not because he understands the reason but because he does`t want to be “punished”.
Panelist sat down to discuss not only Positive Discipline but also share their experiences about corporal punishment and how they deal and rear their own children.
How often have we heard the phrase “I did this for his own good, and because I love him.” by parents who try to justify their form of discipline unusual physical punishment.
The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child defines corporal or physical punishment as any punishment that is used and intended to cause some degree of pain or discomfort that is used and intended to cause some degree of pain or discomfort, however light. These are disciplining methods that are cruel and degrading to children.
Love need not hurt… parents just need to know how to go about it.
The Positive and Non-violent Discipline Approach does nut have a rigid set of child discipline techniques because it anchors on the idea that disciplining methods should vary depending on the situation and child`s development stage. Instead, the approach is guided by principles that should be considered in designing the appropriate disciplining method for the child.
Celebrity Moms actresses Lotlot de Leon and Cherry Pie Picache along with Reema Chanco program host and sports enthusiast (she was out of the country during the media launch) shared their experiences in support for this advocacy.
Lotlot de Leon shares that for her the best way to discipline children is to explain to them their mistakes, to sit down and talk with them. “In the future, when out children become parents, they will do the same kind of parenting we did to them to our grand children.”
“The biggest challenge in inspiring and encouraging other parents to embrace positive discipline is to enable them to veer away with the beliefs, customs and values they grew up with, the kind of discipline that harm, embarrass and instill fear to children.” according to Cherry Pie Picache
Child Right Network advocates Positive Discipline has been lobbying for the passage of a law that will institutionalize positive discipline and non-violent methods of disciplining children. Congress already passed HB #4907 or Positive and Non-violent Discipline of Children Act which explicitly prohibits corporal punishment,and provides a comprehensive program to promote positive and non-violent discipline authored separately by several Senadors but alas they are still pending.
As part of the Media Kit, I received a copy of their of PETA play called RATED:PG written by Liza Magtoto and Directed by Maribel Legarda. Stage Directed by Mae Quesada-Medina
The story revolves around a low-income couple and how they faced the challenges of raising their children while practicing positive discipline.
The handbook To Spank or not to Spank: A Primer on the Proposed Positive and Non-violent Discipline of Children Act a Publication by the Philippine Legislator`s Committee on Population and Development Foundation, Inc
A copy of the latest campaign Go Positive! Discipline without Harm because Love Does not Hurt (AVP)
Go Positive! Disciple without Harm because Love Does Not Hurt video
As Parents, we are given the responsibility in raising good outstanding individuals, The practice of Positive Discipline would instill the culture of love, understanding and empathy for future generations.
Globally Parenting styles have changed, it’s about time the Philippines catch up to these changes. Violence and harshness when dealing with children and young people is the antiquated way the non-violent and non-corporal ways of disciplining children is the way to lead them to the straight path. We as just have to open our eyes and hearts to see and of course to practice it.
I must admit, as a parent of teenagers (I have two) I am still a work in progress. I pray everyday that my patience increase, I grow stronger and become the parent they deserve. Like every parent all we want is what`s best for our beasties.
Go Positive! is in partnership with Plan International, Child Rights Network (CRN) and Dakila supported by terre des homes-Germany, German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), and EU European Union
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Until next time!