Welcome to another edition of focus on the family which deals with family issues in a humorous way. Be sure to read every article to the very end and drop your views and comments.
Sparing the Rod.
The proper way to train a child in the African setting is by proper use of the rod. When I say proper use, I mean proper use. Not to put the child on your knee and give the child a few smacks on the bottom and think you have done your duty. No, those are like love pats. I’m talking about a full-scale, no holds barred paddling. The one in which no particular part of the body is left out. You know, the whole body shares the punishment equally. The one in which your child is shrieking with tears streaming down his/her face and not knowing where the next whiplash is going to come from. One of the advantages of this form of discipline is that the instrument used as the rod doesn’t have to be restricted to the cane our headmasters used or the popular horsewhip. Here, you are allowed to improvise and use whatever is available. Like a shoe, slippers or the ever ready ‘omorogun.’( wooden spoon used in making food) If you have none of those, you can always give the child multiple slaps on the face. I heard it works just as well.
When you are carrying out this form of discipline, you need to make sure your voice is loud like several decibels higher than it is normally. You see the child has to know that you are very upset with him. It helps if you are good at using some of our traditional titles that we give children when we are beating them like ‘olosi,’ ‘oloriburuku’, ‘ori e o pe.’(Idiot, stupid, your head is not correct). This will reinforce in the child’s brain how not to misbehave next time.
The white folk say we need to sit the child down and tell him/her what they did wrong so they will realize it and not do that again. But, what do they know, right? After all, we have brought up well disciplined children for years. Our children are smart. They don’t need to be told what they’ve done wrong before they are given the beating they justly deserve.
Those white folk(silly them) also think a child does not need to be smacked for every misdemeanor. They want us to give them various punishments like grounding(such a silly word; abi na pepper we dey grind), taking away phone privileges, telling them to stand in the corner, then weird things like detention. All those are a waste of time. Besides we have more inventive punishments like the kneeling, raising up your hands and closing your eyes one commonly employed in our schools especially doing it in the sun, the frog jump, the manual labor of cutting grass, etc.
The weirdest thing those white folk do for their children is that after disciplining the child, you should hold the child close and tell him how much you love him/her. Are they serious? We will definitely spoil the child that way.
However, some child experts say, if you carry out whatever form of discipline on your child and do not do it in love, you might have a real problem as a parent. (What do they know, right?)
P.S: What do you think is the best form of discipline in our African setting? How should discipline be carried out? Express yourself.