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„Mommy, how come these little ones get away with things many didn’t
when they were that age?„ is the usual complaint of the eldest children. They
were referring – not to their first brother, who was just a few years younger — but
to the next „batch„ of siblings – a boy or a girl who came about ten years later.
As parents, you do try not to play favorites and be consistent as possible.
However, that eldest child, indeed, had reason to complain. „Well son, it’s
because your parents have learned a few things as you were growing up. You
must understand. Your parents never had any kids before you so they made a
few mistakes with you„ is probably the usual explanation.
„So I am the guinea pig! Why was I born first?„ will probably be exclaimed,
with a smile.
If you read Dr. Spock from cover to cover, you will probably be
unconvinced about sparing the rod. Didn’t that generation produce the juvenile
delinquents? You didn’t follow the „wait `til your father gets home„ practice either.
Very young children tend to forget what they are being punished for when you
postpone it. Besides, it is assured that you do not want them to have an image of
a father as „the executioner„ just as you dislike the sermons of the old about
mortal sin and hell-fire.
That doesn’t mean you should spank them for every little thing. If talking to
them or sending them to their room doesn’t work, then the slippers will convince