Tuesday Tip for Parenting: Children need to understand consequences – Kick them out the car!

This is our regular guest post by Beckie Whitehouse from Be Confident Coaching.

Road Safety - where would it be safe to let a child walk if we did decide to let them our as a consequence of bed behaviour?
Road Safety – where would it be safe to let a child walk if we did decide to let them our as a consequence of bad behaviour?

Last night, I was out for a drink at the pub for a friend’s birthday. It was all Mums, so naturally we did get to chatting about the kids and consequences from behaviour.

Someone had heard a suggestion that if the children misbehave in the car; you should pull over let them out to walk whilst you had a friend in another car behind who can keep an eye on them.

We quite liked the idea in principle!

It would make driving simpler and reduce headaches, but the practicalities are bit more complex – we would never get anything done if we were all following each other around; that’s us parents I mean. Plus what road is safe where we could do this?

Maybe older children, but my 4 year old?

And would we all have to go on holiday together?

The older two could do it on the roads around our village or even home from school, but  we tend to walk anyway.

Plus -maybe its just us- a lot of the car squabbling (or where it really grates) is on longer journeys, simply as we are in the car for longer or the traffics bad and these trips involve motorways!!

We laugh…

…but we do have to teach our children their actions have consequences.

We work on the positives and reward those, but occasionally for continued misbehaviour and rudeness the older two have to miss Cubs or Brownies – their favourite activities – they hate it – I don’t like to do it, but sometimes it happens.

Traffic jams - can we really chuck our kids out the car?
Traffic jams – can we really chuck our kids out the car?

Not very often, but sometimes it does.

Whatever we decide a consequence is, we must mean it whether its’ a loss of a privileges or a reward. Children will very quickly pick up whether a parent will carry something through and know whether to change the way they are behaving or not. Think carefully or have a back up plan.

We have all done it.

I once said no to Brownies a week I was helping, which was all a bit ridiculous, so now we have an earning back programme just in case I speak again before I have engaged my brain!!!

How do you teach your children consequences – do tell us below.

7 Comments

  • I must admit I am just starting to watch what I say and making sure that i never threaten anything that I actually then have to go through anyway!
    Scamp was told that weekend that if she wasn’t nice to her brother then she wouldn’t be allowed to sleep over in Ozzys room for a treat. She persisted in her tormenting of him and now she’s in bed in her own room and I stuck to my guns and the sleepover was cancelled. We have a similar scenario this evening and I threated the cancel it again and she was as gold as gold after!

  • I remember our mother pulling in and saying we’d be walking home – not sure if she’d carry through but I believed she would which was enough. I’m guilty of making empty threats but have recently made much less and followed through with what I’ve said. Children are shocked and it’s very hard and upsetting sticking to punishment but it really works in the long run. I’ve never threatened to kick them out the car though and there’s no way I’d do it, mine wouldn’t walk anywhere they’d sit by the side of the road and sob.

    • Well done! It can be really hard to follow up on the threats we make but you are so right it works in the long run.

  • I have always followed through and never threatened anything I’m not prepared to follow through on – I think it’s ridiculous in Tesco or somewhere where I’ve heard parents threaten they’ll call the Police if the child doesn’t stop mis-behaving. Well, maybe that’s why the child is misbehaving in the first place – because they know the threat won’t be carried through…
    I know it’s easy to say and we certainly have our fair share of tantrums/strops/etc. but see the comment I posted about DD2’s strop on your post the other day! ;-)
    They have missed Brownies/ballet/swimming, etc. sometimes (not when I was helping, though! ;-) ) – and they also know that if I threaten I’d cancel their birthday party for serious misdemeanours, if necessary, I will!! (Would take a lot for that, though, but I would, regardless of how many people were coming or how much I’d spent…!)

    I did hear of someone who threatened that Father Christmas wouldn’t come… and then he didn’t! Good for her for following through – but must have been some misbehavin’!

  • Funny this post should come today! I pulled over at the weekend cos my kids were arguing in the car and told the main perpetrator that if they carried on, they would be getting out and walking! I hate nothing more than hearing arguments in the car when I am driving, it is so distracting …….

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