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They say "spare the rod and spoil the child", and since days our grandparents and parents have followed the same logic in growing us up.. Since we are the next generation - gen-x having kids that belong to gen-z I thought I should always be different in the way I approach my child when he's growing up.. So I chose "Carrots and sticks" approach. This basically is a motivation approach used in international or labour relations, but believe me, it works wonders when used in real life too, be it with anyone. For those of you who don't know what exactly this approach is, the name explains, "the carrot or the stick." Deciding whether a desired behaviour would be better induced via the enhancement of benefits or the threat of punishments. So in short, if you're good you get carrots (sweet) and if you're bad you get sticks (whacks). So when applied to children, they get rewards when they are sweet and well behaved, and punished when its the other way round. This logic I implemented with my son, and it just works wonders. But how, when and how far should one go while implementing this approach is a matter of debate.
Coming to my case, my son, he's 7.5 years old now, he's a very vibrant, full of energy and curious minded boy. He has an eye for detail, especially for the ones which are unwanted for the kids of his age. Like they say curiosity kills the cat, he kills me if I don't answer to any of his curious questions. Till the age of about 5 he was a very obedient child (not to brand him disobedient now ). Later on with a lot of peer influence and T.V influence, his tantrums kept on worsening day by day, but I was very much grounded to my rules of raising him up since beginning. May be he was too young to understand all that at 5 years of age. But as he grew he was able to understand, so what did he resort to, defence mechanisms - the grandparents. Since he was the only child in the family, he received a lot of attention and love to spoil him at times when grandparents were around. He was so manipulative that he made sure he would get it from them, what he didn't get from me.. I mean from where do they end up learning such things. At this age, we as kids were so innocent and scared to even ask our parents something or cross question them.
So I had to get a few things right from my side, explained everyone in the family. I did receive some resistance from most of them, they said he'll start hating you if you're a control freak mother. But one thing I still dislike is that they just don't accept the fact, today's kids are way beyond, they can just control and manipulate anyone. Lots of arguments followed, and even today we haven't come to the conclusion if the kids need to be given both carrots and stick only just carrots. In this age of fast digitisation, T.V, mobile, tabs and iPad, media and internet has a huge influence on the way the kids are growing up. Its completely in our hands to regulate and mediate, communicate with the child for a pleasant experience of up bringing of the child. I feel, the family as a whole should always stick to just one logic and have the same rules put forward. But, all this doesn't happen in reality. This brings in a lot of conflict in the child's mind, and ultimately the mother ends up being the villain.
Many time even I might have failed, but I'm also learning and growing up as a mother with my child. I might have over done a few things, I might have given too many sticks at a time or may be too many carrots. But I need to see what works best and how things turn out to be. Nobody is perfect in life. I also need to explore, fall and then learn.