Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Brats without bribes? Nah, more like bribes without brats

I was worried about the latest instalment of my parenting column, The Mom Scene, because I know parents can get really uppitty about bribing -- rewards, incentives, whatever you want to call it.

I didn't want people to think my kids were little brats who only behaved with the promise of a sucker. That's just not the case. I'm one of the most strict parents I know. My kids are damn well-behaved!


Before publishing it, several friends told me they really disagreed with bribery, so I wondered if I was totaaaaally off-base.

So far, though, I've only heard from parents who totally get it. They're just like me, doing what they need to do to get through the errands unscathed.

My mom was an expect briber when we were kids — dangling exactly the right reward in front of us when it was time to buck up for vaccinations, or if she needed us to behave for a babysitter we didn’t like.
I don’t consider it any different from offering M&Ms during the potty-training process: it’s about encouraging good behaviour until it become a habit.
But if you say, out loud in 2014, that you have no problem bribing your kids? Hoo boy! I’ve had friends whisper that they bribed their kids in order to leave a store without a fuss, and they say it like they’re the worst parent in the world. When did bribing become so shameful?

Read the full column over here at the brand-new HailfaxCitizen.ca. I'd love to have you!

1 comment:

Megan S said...

so glad to hear I'm not the only one who does this! I agree, it doesn't always have to be something expensive or even candy. We do a lot of we can bake something when we get home, or play something special that we don't always get to do. But suckers and kinder eggs are always fun too :)