Tag: discipline

Child Whispering

The writer as a child with her mother and brother.

“Experience has taught us that we have only one enduring weapon in our struggle against mental illness:  the emotional discovery of the truth about the unique history of our childhood.” 

So begins Alice Miller’s The Drama of the Gifted Child, a book that’s been kicking around for the better part of four decades.  Strangely, no fewer than four people have mentioned to me in recent weeks.  Finally, I got a copy.

Kid Discrimination at a Baltimore Restaurant?


We’ve read nationally that hot restaurants are trending away from customer coddling. One Baltimore restaurant seems to echo this rhythm, but is it actually symptomatic of a larger happening? Local diners, please weigh in below. – The Eds.

The world of a work-at-home mom almost always has one of two things going: either a juggling act or a balancing act, but typically it’s a circus. I don’t think the majority of people realize the sacrifices moms makes in order to maintain a daily presence with their children. That’s a topic for another column. My own juggling act brought me to a cozy, upscale urban bistro at lunchtime, with my tween, my toddler, and meeting notes.

Spanking Is Down. Supervision Is Up. But Are Kids Better off?


Today, parents are far less likely to use spanking to discipline their children than were parents of previous generations. Megan McArdle of The Atlantic links the decline in corporal punishment as a parenting technique to a general increase in parental supervision, which facilitated a move from the belt (which delivers “swift punishment for detected wrongdoings”) to the gold star (which requires being constantly on the look-out for good behavior).

But is this new, intensive form of parenting (with an emphasis on greater monitoring and incentivized behaviors) actually better for our kids? McArdle notes parenthetically that employers complain that young workers are too entitled, and struggle in the absence of structure. But what if we have moral issues with corporal punishment? Is there a way to effectively parent with neither the belt nor the gold star?