Disciplining the Nephew

August 27, 2009

Why is it that the hardest thing for me to do this week was to discipline my young nephew?

He committed some atrocious behavior, the details of which I won’t go into here.  But what I will say is that since I’m not the parent, I had no intention of acting like one.  Nevertheless, it did require discipline before the act was forgotten.

It actually bothered me more than I care to admit.  Not the deed.  But how to deal with it.  I reasoned that to be a good uncle, I ought to “talk” with my nephew.  And in the end, this proved to be a good thing.  But, despite my hope to listen more than talk,  it still turned out to be more of a lecture, mostly due to my nephew’s unwillingness to be open and let his feelings out.  Getting these kids to articulate their thoughts has always been tough.  I’m not sure if that’s more a function of who they are, or that they aren’t encouraged to speak about their thoughts and feelings at school or home.

What came of our “talk”, though, I’m hoping, is his understanding that what was done was not OK and will be avoided in the future.  That by not just punishing without listening, we may have actually learned something through communication, not by repetitive discipline.

I guess we’ll know that the next time around…  Hopefully, he’ll be the uncle by then.

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3 Responses to “Disciplining the Nephew”

  1. Liezl Says:

    That’s too cute. Glad you had a talk. I always also try to balance the cool aunt thing as well.

  2. Sealling Says:

    My Daddy always said, “I don’t know” is not an answer. So maybe you can tell that to them and they can learn to give more of a thorough answer or explanation.

  3. Min Says:

    Well, males in general have a difficulty articulating their feelings. My godson and I have conversations that are like a Diesel engine–it takes 15 to 20 minutes to get him going and then he never stops. But that first 15 minutes is like pulling teeth from a rabid goat who is on methamphetamines.


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