3 thoughts on “On Disciplining Children

  1. Well, there are so many methods out there. I found parenting easy with my eldest child. Then the second child, it seemed that nothing worked. I read lots of books, and tried many methods. Even today, we have trouble finding what will work with him. My little one is not doing well, and it's because of the second child's issues with me. So, This is a vast topic. I keep hoping for something better, some big change, praying to God for help.

  2. When my first two children were little, our priest recommended reading Aletha Solter's books, and she came to our parish for a workshop. Those books were a God-send! I don't know her religious background- her books are written from a developmental psychologist's perspective. But she does NOT support the idea that children are born sinful like many of the Protestant parenting authors do because of the misunderstanding of Original Sin. (Orthodox parents need to be aware of this when reading religious parenting books!) She believes children are born innocent into a broken world, and that difference in belief can really affect how people parent. As Orthodox Christians, we know that children are born good, made in God's image, but they are given to parents to protect them and guide them to become Christ-like. They are not born knowing and understanding everything. But though God gives children parents to learn from, we should also keep in mind that children are given to parents for the parents to learn from too! Our children help us recognize and struggle through our own shortcomings and work towards becoming more Christ-like. Though I don't agree with every word, Dr. Solter's books really helped me know how to recognize what my children need even if they can't tell me and understand the reasons behind the difficult behavior so the root of the issue can be addressed. They also helped me recognize that sometimes my expectations were not realistic for their development level and that my Protestant upbringing sometimes caused me to believe my children's "misbehavior" was sinful or devious when it was not. I have an MS in Educational Psychology and am the mother of 4. The books I recommend the most to my friends are Children in the Church Today: An Orthodox Perspective by Sister Magdalen and Helping Young Children Flourish by Aletha Solter, PhD. Those are two of my favorites.

  3. Genevieve, Prayer is the most important thing. Our Gerondissa always says that a mother's prayers are the loudest to God. 🙂 Sophia,Thanks so much for these resources! I can't wait to check them out!

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