255 votes
Accepted

Should I punish my teenage sister, whom I have full custody of, for lying to me in order to secretly see her boyfriend?

Your sister got herself into a situation that she felt she needed to lie about. She could have continued doing that in the hope that she never got caught out, or until some crisis point where she was ...
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206 votes

My 13-year-old son made a foolish and wasteful donation. How can I teach him he was wrong?

Donate the left shoes in the same donation box. Whether or not they are able to get single shoes to those who need them, having a half-pair sit in your son's closet does nobody any good. Might as well ...
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206 votes

What to do with my pre-teen daughter who has been out of control since a severe accident?

I've tried and tried to get her to go to counseling but only response I get you can make me go but don't expect me to say a word. So, make her go. Therapists have a way of getting people to talk, and ...
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158 votes

My 16 year old daughter got a speeding ticket

I'm late to the discussion here, but... I believe firmly in making the punishment fit the crime. If she wasn't on the phone while speeding, I don't understand what her phone has to do with it. ...
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  • 66.8k
150 votes

My 13-year-old son made a foolish and wasteful donation. How can I teach him he was wrong?

Hehe, that is pretty funny. Eh, don't worry about it. Kids do silly things, this isn't one that's going to get him killed. Sometimes people just need to do something that goes against the normal ...
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  • 1,345
149 votes
Accepted

My 16 year old daughter got a speeding ticket

I drive fast...too fast...and am working on breaking that habit now. Both parents drove fast and aggressive and therefore I picked up those traits, still I am the one driving and choosing to drive in ...
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  • 1,869
139 votes

How to answer my 5 year old why I can tell her what she has to do, and why she can't tell me what to do

Try to go along this line: There are rules that exist for everyone. I have to go to work. You have to go to school. I tell you about the rules because I know them; I don't just make them up to ...
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  • 1,882
133 votes
Accepted

What are the legal, emotional, and/or behavioral repercussions of confiscating money as a punishment?

I would be concerned that this form of punishment might end up teaching the wrong associations, because it artificially connects money to behavior which is not naturally about money. For example, I ...
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  • 1,244
128 votes
Accepted

18-month-old kicked out of church nursery

Since you're talking about church, I take it religious beliefs should be on topic here. There are two commandments that supersede (and contain) all the others. One of them is You shall love your ...
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125 votes

How to deal with a 6 year old who was "caught" cheating?

You may not like this answer, but bear with me for a moment, please. So first, let’s recap what happened. Your son checked the answers for a test, during the test, in order to correct possible ...
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98 votes

How to deal with my 12 year old son being allegedly caught cheating at school

First, I would (as Becuzz mentioned) sit down with him and hear his side of the story. It may be that he was cheating, and in this case, if he seems properly repentant and embarrassed, you might work ...
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95 votes

My 16 year old daughter got a speeding ticket

I'm going to go a different route than many of the other answers, in that you could do what my parents did for me. It not only forced me to take responsibility for my actions, but also to cover the ...
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  • 1,374
92 votes

How should I handle an 8 year old lawyering and quibbling?

I am glad you used the term "lawyering". I have been on both sides of this situation. As the child, I distinctly recall the fun in "outsmarting" my parents. I considered them as incapable of ...
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90 votes

What to do with my pre-teen daughter who has been out of control since a severe accident?

My daughter...was only one in our vehicle that didn't sustain any life threatening injuries (only a broken foot) Your daughter suffered a severe trauma. Such events don't necessarily leave physical ...
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  • 1,502
84 votes

5yrs old being bossy... Is this too much or tolerable at this age?

By tolerating the behavior, you're validating the behavior. Her age doesn't matter - it only make the problem your responsibility. Let's call things as they are: your daughter bullied another girl to ...
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  • 1,882
80 votes
Accepted

How can I undo the bad behavior my 2.5 year old daughter learned from 5 year old children?

For your first question: no, and no. Don't cut off other parents, and don't micromanage things. For your second question: yes, and yes. You can educate her; that's what her life is at this point ...
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79 votes
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Is it too late to read for my baby?

It is not too late at all. Please do try to limit TV, and of course you are tired after working all day. However, this is also your job. Reading, playing, walking to the park -- all of these things ...
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  • 17.4k
65 votes

My 13-year-old son made a foolish and wasteful donation. How can I teach him he was wrong?

First off, I strongly recommend taking the money out of your thinking. Teenagers can do foolish things that can be expensive, but it just doesn't help to dwell on the cost of the shoes. Remember: your ...
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  • 2,280
58 votes

My 2 year old is a bully!

Welcome to the "Terrible Two's"! Your son behaves typically for his age. At 2 he starts to assert himself and express his demands. It's likely that he has also learned that he gets his way when he ...
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  • 17.6k
58 votes

Should I punish my teenage sister, whom I have full custody of, for lying to me in order to secretly see her boyfriend?

I train dogs as a hobby. This situation reminds me of a cardinal rule of dog training - if your dog is off leash and does something you don’t like, never call him back to you and punish him. Why? He ...
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  • 709
57 votes

How to answer my 5 year old why I can tell her what she has to do, and why she can't tell me what to do

Seems to me this is something where the truth is a good answer. You are responsible for her, because of her lack of experience and lack of maturity. The more she can show maturity, the less you need ...
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57 votes
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8 year old is breaking the rules, and not understanding consequences

Your relationship with your oldest child appears to be in a downward spiral. You seem to describe a power contest, where the only resort you have is to continuously up the punishments. This is never ...
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54 votes
Accepted

Making the child finish their food even if they are already full

Advantages.... None Disadvantages... It creates unnecessary conflict with the child, and it compromises the child's natural ability to self-regulate food intake based on nutrition requirements. As ...
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54 votes

I think my 11 month old is afraid of his dad

You are in a tough situation. Having to share parenting with someone you hate is very difficult. And whenever anyone upsets your child, it's natural to want to prevent that. Let me make some ...
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  • 13.2k
54 votes

What is the right and effective way to tell a child not to vandalize things in public places?

Of all your suggestions, only one really says “it’s not ok to kick the dinosaurs”. The other are sending a different message, which can be summed up as Don’t do it when [some else with more power] ...
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  • 17.6k
53 votes
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How to deal with my 2-year-old daughter crying and getting angry when we don't give her what she asks for?

This is a difficult problem for parents because we hate making our children cry, but it seems to me that you use 'the naughty place' / timeout and that can be effective. I don't call it 'the naughty ...
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  • 17.4k
52 votes

Making the child finish their food even if they are already full

This is what my mother did with us (it wouldn't work with very young children; I can't recall what she did then): We were never served food. It came to the table in whatever pot it was cooked in, and ...
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  • 747
51 votes

8 year old is breaking the rules, and not understanding consequences

First: do not, under any circumstances, try to "trigger" them. That's a great way to end up in a reddit thread a decade or so down the line complaining about the child's mentally abusive ...
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