How To Stop The Progression of Bad Parenting

All of us want to be good parents, and want to do our best to raise our kids properly. However, if you look around today you can see the progression of  bad parenting has grown.


This  progression is  the opposite of what we want as Christian parents. However, it is easy to fall into some of these habits in our parenting.


A common progression is:

1. Laugh at what your little ones do; it’s just SO cute!

2. Tolerate their behavior when it no longer seems so cute.                                                                      .

3. Correct and scold them because the behavior now is irritating you.

4. Berate and humiliate them when you can no longer  tolerate the irritation from that “cute behavior.”

5. Lose their heart because of how you now respond to their wrong behavior, and your lack of acceptance of them.

How To Stop the Progression of Bad Parenting:

1. Even if it’s cute when they do something wrong, don’t laugh at them.

That just encourages them to continue or repeat the behavior. If it’s not something you want them doing when they are two or even ten years older, then don’t laugh at it now!

2. Rather than tolerate their behavior, train them in what is acceptable and what is not.

Don’t just expect them to know what behavior you are looking for. They need training and practice in doing what is right. Set clear standards and rules, as well as consequences for not following them.

You need to be intentional in your parenting, to be sure you are teaching them what is acceptable behavior.

3. After training them, correct consistently when they aren’t obeying the family rules that  have been taught. 

Consistency keeps you calm, and teaches them that it’s not worth taking chances.

4. Never humiliate them for their wrong behavior.

That will not make them sorry for their sin, but will make them angry and resentful of you. Let them know we all struggle, and we need God’s help to do what is right.

Using God’s Word as we train and correct our kids is the best way to reach their hearts, because God’s Word has power that our words don’t have. 

Using God’s Word also keeps you from getting angry as you train and  correct wrong behavior.

Overcoming anger God's Way

5. Remember that the goal of discipline and correction is to change their heart, not their behavior.
In the book, Passionate Parenting, author Cary Schmidt asks the question,

“If you had to quantify your parenting focus with following words, which two would be most accurate: Managing Behavior or Mentoring Hearts?

In the big picture, all discipline is about bringing our children into a right relationship with their Heavenly Father that He might bless their lives. It’s not about controlling behavior, modifying behavior, or minimizing embarrassment. Biblically correcting your child is one of the greatest ways to win their heart to you and to God forever.” (Passionate Parenting)

This is such an important truth to remember! If we focus on the heart issue, when that is taken care of, the behavior will be better.

What are some parenting tips that you would add to this list?

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6 Responses

  1. So glad that this was encouraging to you. It is easy to forget that our children are little people sometimes, isn’t it, and forget to give them the love and training they need, rather than getting frustrated at their behavior. It is hard to parent differently than the way you were brought up, but with God’s grace and help you can do it!

  2. Wow, thank you for this. Number 5 spoke volumes to me because I’m constantly reminding myself that I’m raising little human beings. They are people, my little peeps that need love, guidance and direction. Not behavior modification. (It certainly is a process though when you’re raised one way and you then have to learn and unlearn everything.) But….grace.

  3. I grew up feeling shamed and tolerated when I did something ‘wrong’ – or what my parents viewed as ‘wrong’ – like if I embarrassed them or made them look bad. So, I really know how important it is to NOT do the things you mentioned above.
    I love this quote: If we focus on the heart issue, when that is taken care of, the behavior will be better.
    I am adding your link to my blog round-up 7 – probably will post it next Friday.

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