How many times have you heard a parent say “if you do that one more time, we are going to leave” but when their child does the offending behavior ten more times without punishment, that child learns that threats don’t matter and he or she can behave badly without facing any consequences.
If you tell your daughter that if she hits the wall with her ride-in car once more that you will take the car away, when she hits the wall again deliberately, you must take action by following through with the consequence – by taking away her car.
If you let her repeat the bad behavior without discipline, she learns that she can continue to do the bad behavior without being punished, she learns that she can do whatever she chooses, and that you won’t follow through with the punishment you claim she will get if she repeats the bad behavior.
The longer you continue to threaten your child with discipline, the worse the behavior will become, and the harder it will be to enforce discipline.
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