What are some creative punishments for teenagers

Consistent and without anger: meaningful punishments

When defiant toddlers use the shovel to defend the sandpit or rebellious teenagers say "no" on principle and ignore all the rules, parents often reach their limits. But what are meaningful punishments?

It is not so long ago that physical violence was a common, recognized means of education and a cane, unfortunately, a tried and tested instrument to instill absolute obedience in children or to punish them. The point of view "a slap in the face has never harmed anyone" still haunts many people's minds.

Fortunately, such or similar drastic measures no longer belong in the educational repertoire of most parents, but are now considered taboo. By law, children have the right to a non-violent upbringing. Paragraph 1631, Section II of the Civil Code states that corporal punishment, emotional injury and other degrading measures are prohibited.

No magic formula for meaningful penalties

Education based on intimidation and obedience is no longer appropriate. Today, more than ever, parents have to show a sure instinct to teach their children the rules of living together and at the same time to show them their limits. Misconduct and conflicts are inevitable.

But which sanctions are "educationally valuable"? It is hardly possible to answer this across the board with appropriate "punishment recipes" at any time. Because the children are too different and the situations in which something can get out of hand are too diverse.

Show of power and humiliation are taboo

So that educational consequences are actually meaningful and have a learning effect, parents can heed certain principles in advance: First of all, the legal guardians must be clear that punishment is not about demonstrating power or humiliating the child. It's all about behavior and not about the person.

The goal should be to prevent a child from making a particular mistake a second time. In spite of the conflict, the child should never have the feeling that they are not loved and that they are being punished for vindictiveness. That would trigger fears and self-doubt.

Rules have to be familiar

It is also important that a child knows what is allowed and what is not. Only then can it assess when it is breaking a rule. It also has to be informed in advance what happens if certain rules are disregarded. Parents can point out agreements and impose sensible sanctions.

It also plays a role whether a child intentionally disregards a prohibition. Anyone who punishes misconduct that happened accidentally seriously disrupts the mutual trust.

Dose the consequences appropriately

A punishment should also be appropriate. Small mistakes or rule violations do not justify excessive measures, such as being banished to the room for hours because of a cheeky answer. Such exaggerated sanctions create incomprehension and aggression in the children.

In addition, it is counterproductive if every little thing has consequences. Punishments should be dosed and used sparingly. If there is constant tension in the expectation of a new sanction - according to the motto "what have I done wrong again" - this not only affects the family atmosphere, but also makes the child insensitive to the educational measures at some point. It dulls.

Tolerant, measured and without anger

In their approach, parents must not rush forward too quickly. It is fair not to enforce the punishment immediately, but rather to give the child the chance to change their behavior voluntarily. It is important that the adults try to remain calm in the conflict situation. Those who impose do's and don'ts with anger in their stomach are in the wrong. Because punishments that result from a whim are mostly inappropriate and arbitrary.

No empty threats

So that announced sanctions have a lasting effect, they should be implemented as consistently as possible. Parents also need to consider beforehand whether a punishment is realistic. Threats that cannot be implemented make legal guardians unbelievable in front of their children.

For this reason, sentences such as "I'll never take you again" or "That was the last time you were allowed to use the computer" are guaranteed to come to nothing and lead to the child not taking their parents seriously because they are them not make the announced consequences come true.

Sometimes you turn a blind eye

Despite all the pedagogical straightforwardness strived for: every now and then parents are allowed to turn a blind eye - especially if you are tired, exhausted or just in a bad mood after a long day. With such emotional imbalance, there is a risk of overreacting in a conflict with your child and pronouncing unjust punishments.

Therefore, it is not necessarily harmful for parents to sometimes "let go of fives" and overlook certain inappropriate behaviors. This shows that they themselves are not flawless and that mildness is just as important for their upbringing as consistent action.

Punishment must match the offense

In order for the children to learn from their misconduct, the punishments should always be clearly related to the stumbling block. A logical consequence, for example, is that a toddler will no longer be taken to the grocery store as long as it continues to whine for sweets and has tantrums at the supermarket checkout.

And you can make it clear to children who don't tidy their room that it is so difficult to vacuum. A suitable lesson would be if the offspring maneuvers the vacuum cleaner through the chaos and realizes how annoying its disorder is. In such a case, threatening to withdraw pocket money, for example, makes little sense because the offense and the punishment are not logically related.

For children up to school age, it is also important that the punishment is always closely related to the "offense". A five-year-old only understands his wrongdoing if it is clearly conveyed to him immediately after the incident. An evening lecture is of little use if, for example, the culprit bit his little brother at noon.

The sound makes the music

Packaging is also crucial for an effective punishment strategy. That is, parents should be careful about how they verbally "sell" sanctions.

Anyone who says in an accusatory tone, "Because you dragged out your homework so endlessly, you have to stay at home now," can be fairly certain that your offspring will be stubborn and unapologetic. Better is an honestly meant "What a shame, it has become so late that you no longer have time for your friends."

In this way, the child realizes that they can control the situation themselves and avoid the unpleasant consequences of their actions next time.

If your hand slips

No matter how hard you try to remain disciplined in conflict situations, at some point it can still happen that your hand slips during an argument and lands on your bottom. Usually, remorse and guilt feelings quickly set in afterwards.

Then parents should not be afraid to admit their mistake in front of the child and at the same time make it clear to him that his behavior was still wrong. Parents who react in this way show that nobody is infallible and that it is important to take responsibility for what you do.

Do not deprive of basic needs

What parents should never threaten as punishment is deprivation of love. Ignoring for hours or sentences like "Now I don't love you anymore" scare you and make you feel insecure. Sending children to bed without a meal is also an absolute no-go. In this way, one abuses basic needs such as sleeping and eating and brings them into a negative context.

With the classic house arrest, which can never last more than one to three days, parents also have to weigh up very carefully. This consequence only makes sense if the wrongdoing is related to being late or running away.

When parents issue sanctions, they should not only see what has happened negatively and above all not take it personally. Because mistakes are milestones in child development and are among the most effective learning methods of all on the way to adulthood.

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