I have read this chapter summary from the Moral Foundations chapter of Babywise Two several times. I just love it...so I decided to post it:)
"Children first learn how to act morally, and then they learn how to think morally."
"As a parent, you are obligated to produce a responsible human being, and that challenge should not be left up to chance. Accept the challenges of parenting, realizing that the process of training your child starts with you. Belonging to your family is not an option for your child, but a mandate. That means moral conformity is required. There are certain virtues worth acquiring, such as kindness, goodness, gentleness, charity, honesty, honor and respect. Since these qualities are not naturally found in a childs life, they must be instilled and nurtured into his or her heart."
"You are the governors of your childs life. Be proud of the fact. Don't shy away from your responsibility, though it is great. You are to govern until your child develops within his or her heart the self-control and moral precepts necessary for self governance. Self legislative freedoms come gradually. In an appropriate amount of time, your child will be allowed to advance from the playpen to the backyard to the neighborhood. As your child demonstrates age responsible behavior and sound judgment, he or she will earn another level of freedom. This type of training results in a developmentally healthy child who is a joy to everyone."
So immediate gratification-not the answer? Correct.
The book goes way more in depth about how boundaries also produce a more academic mind, because it improves attention spans and the ability to think logically, morally.
We've got some work to do with our little tantrum throwing Hutch. It's amazing though, how he does thrive when given boundaries. He's happier. Without them he's a whiny, snotty mess, wandering around looking for trouble.
We are also finding the same is true with Reagan-in a different way because she is older.
We are learning that when given too many choices, she's a wreck. You can see the "unsure" on her face. She's not yet able to make choices for herself in a lot of areas....i.e. meals, clothing, school, even when to potty sometimes....
She's much happier when it just "is what it is" and that, at present, is what mommy and daddy have chosen for her.
That's a different kind of boundary, but the same idea.
In that boundary she is required by us to choose respectful, compliant (moral) behavior.
This may all be a jumbled mess....what I'm saying is....my kids are SO much happier when there are boundaries and structure in place for them. It's a security thing, I guess.
So-it's a challenge for me-to get my day together. To not let the day run me, but to provide structure and schedules and boundaries for my kids. They need it. We are all happier when mommy and daddy are consistent.
So let's teach the correct response, provide structure and pray God saves their little hearts and gives them the "want to do right" desire in their conscience later.