No. 1061 - YOU DON'T LOVE ME!

No. 1061



If you are a parent, grandparent, guardian or someone else who is responsible for rearing a child, have you ever heard these words, “You don’t love me.” Now, I am sure in a few cases, this is actually true. There are some people who have never felt loved so it is impossible for them to give love. But in most cases, the child who says “You don’t love me” is actually using these words as a tool to get what he or she wants -- or in other words, to get their own way.
What prompted these thoughts is something an attorney friend who works in our juvenile court system told me the other day. He said, “The kids in our court system today are completely out of control. They have had no love, no discipline and no structure in their home life and now we have to deal with it.” Because discipline has become such a problem in our schools and also in millions of homes across America, this is a topic that may be of interest. To be brutally honest, and I don’t know your situation, the reason our schools are having such a problem is because parents are not doing the job at home, where it should be done.
Today we have another element in the equation that was not around when I was growing up, and that is our court system. In many cases the judges have tied the hands of those in authority who could do something about the problem. In a nearby community a few weeks ago, a student was in class smoking a cigarette. He went up the teacher in the front of the room and blew smoke in his face, not once but twice, while the teacher just stood there and took it. Of course the outcome is usually to expel the student from the school, but what this does is turn an out-of-control kid loose on society.
What is the answer? While it is a complex issue, I believe the best approach is for all of us to work together to solve the problem, for judges to use some common sense in making rulings, for school administrators to be given the authority to deal with problems as they come along and, above all, for parents to love their kids enough to administer discipline in the right way. I hope you understand that the purpose of what I am saying is not to condemn or criticize but rather to offer some positive suggestions and guidelines to deal with the problem or the need.
In administering discipline and punishment to children, here are nine obvious principles that should be observed. No. 1 -- Do not discipline in anger. No. 2 – Do not let discipline be in retaliation. No. 3 – Do it in such a way as to not embarrass and humiliate the child. No. 4 – Let the discipline be reasonable and let discipline be an expression of love. No. 5 – Above all, ask God to give you divine wisdom in rearing that child. No. 6 – Keep your cool. Kids need the confidence that only a steady hand and settled soul can offer. No. 7 – Show your child that you are wise and strong enough to be the boss. No. 8 – Be honest with your children, tell them the truth. No. 9 – Be generous with praise, and when it comes time to criticize, your child will believe you and respect your judgment.
To be sure, rearing children in today’s times is not easy. There are just so many pressures and problems that are around today that were not around a few years ago, but don’t let that be an excuse for not trying. The next time you hear “You don’t love me” you can say, “I loved you enough to let you stumble, fall and fail so that you could learn to stand alone, but most of all I loved you enough to say ‘NO’ when you hated me for it. That was the hardest part of all.”
(Editor’s Note: Bookcase for Every Child – Changing Lives & Futures – ONE AT A TIME. Please visit our website: