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Hi All,

I have 2 different friends who within approx the last 2 months posted pictures online of their children being punished. The punishment in both photos was the child scrubbing a floor.

Why the hell would a parent want to post a "punishment photo" of their kid? I really don't get it.

While these 2 different friends live in the same area, I don't know if they know each other. Neither is overtly religious. And they both have large support systems.

I don't understand the reason why someone would post such pictures of their children?

db

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I see no good reason for doing this DB. It's just humiliating the child and I don't think that's what a punishment should be.

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I can't imagine why anyone would need or want to do this.

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The only context my little brain can think of is an instance on something like Facebook, and the intent behind it is "look at what a good parent I'm being by punishing my kid!" They're doing the whole "sharing too much" thing (probably because they feel insecure) and not enough of the "hey, what the hell am I doing?" thing. That doesn't make it right, but I do think it might circumnavigate the malicious intent part. Personally, if it were me, I'd think of something really snarky to say in response to kind of redirect their attention back to what they're actually doing which is posting pictures of their child being punished on the internet for practically anyone to see. I always go the snarky route first though. I would hope someone would say SOMETHING to these people.

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I can't say that posting pictures of children performing punishment online is a way that any type of positive parenting csn be performed. I mean, what is the goal, and how is it being accomplished? If its by Facebook or other such forums, then you are most likely only showing your friends and family this photo. Not exactly the best way of getting your child to learn a lesson. And besides that, who wants to see a picture of a high school or college buddy posting a picture like that? It's really a case of too much personal information being distributed online.

I think that positive parenting comes from disciplining your children appropriately when they need to learn the consequences of their actions, and then talking to them about the situation. And for crying out loud, not inviting every person on the Internet to know what is going on!

I'd definitely leave a comment in the "I think this should be kept private" area.

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I'm hesitant of putting any photos of kids in a public online arena, once you publish a picture online you lose control of where it will go and who will use it. I also think that shaming kids is a poor kind of discipline, developing their conscience and sense of duty is different from humiliating them.

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Potential triggers in entry, for adults humiliating a child.

As a child I often had bed/pantswetting issues (likely the ADHD,) and I was often punished by my grandmother for it (when I lived with her) via humiliation, like wearing rubber panties.

No FB back then but one time they took me out front of the house (small town) in the rubber panties and then videotaped me trying to hide behind their vehicle, and they pretended people were in the alley, walking around to the front, now to the back again, etc.

Lots of my immediate family got copies. Though by that point I think it was 'cute' and 'funny' rather than the humiliating traumatic experience I always remember it being. I was under the age of five but yeah.

So it follows that I find such humiliating behaviour rather abhorrent. Really, really messed up. But I may be biased.

Some adults though seem to think humiliation in front of others is or should be part of the punishment, IME. Not saying these friends think that, but to me it isn't out of the realm of possibility.

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Miron, that made my heart hurt. It makes me mad tha you ever had to go through that.

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My mother used to hit me hard. All I can remember is the hitting and not why. So what good did that do? My older siblings (8 and 10 years older) used to talk it out with me and I still remember some of those talks. It was more helpful in modifying my behaviour. My dad hit me once and I remember why because he didn't do it all of the time. I still don't agree with hitting or any punishment that is inappropriate to the naughtiness. Gee, bed wetting. How could one punish that?

I said to my mother when I was much older? "When does the parent stop the hitting? Is it when the child is old enough to hit back?" Okay, I've ranted. I will now pull my head in. ;- |

Sigh.

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Without seeing the post, it's really hard to say what the intent of the parent was. While I don't post pictures of my kids in any case, I do post comments on their behavior on occasion. Usually it's a bragging type of post, but sometimes it's a "pulling my hair out, what do I do here" kind of post. With the second kind I've gotten some good, positive parenting tips in response that proved beneficial. But I guess you could say even those kind of posts are humiliating to the child. (lynch me now if you agree)

As for the scrubbing floors pic, although I don't see the harm in the actual punishment itself, I personally don't see how posting a pic of it would do any good, unless it was accompanied by a "did I handle this Ok?" question requesting legitimate responses. Even then, I don't see why a pic would be necessary for that kind of request, but then again, I'm not a posting pic kind of person.

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I think asking for help is something else entirely, you know? Posting pics just all too easily leads to humiliation -- a family member or family friend on FB could easily be over one day and comment on the 'cute' photo of the kid's punishment. Like how family members in my experience all thought the video was cute and funny, and they would comment on it years later.

Asking for help, okay someone could still come by and coment on the kid giving their parents trouble maybe, I just think it is in a whole 'nother field than posting a photo.

I admit I am viewig this heavily through the lens of my experience though.

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All I can remember is the hitting and not why. So what good did that do?

Ditto.

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Only two reasons:

-Humiliating the child

-Self aggrandizement, "See what a good parent I am, I punish my child"

Both are pathetic reasons. Inappropriate.

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I had a coworker that bragged about making her kids kneel on the ground with their hands behind their head for time out, like they were on an episode of COPS. Isn't she such a great parent? She has such good control of them. (sarcasm)

Edited by wj74

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I'll second the idea that theyre just trying to show everyone what a great parent they are. It reminds me of the dad who posted that video on fb of him ranting how much of a brat his daughter is then shooting her laptop. It makes me think at that point you obviously have dropped the ball in the first place and are only worried what others thInk about your parenting, not so much concerned about your daughter.

Miron, that's awful. I have a cousin who has dealt with a lifetime of issues because her dad would hang the sheets out the window for all to see when she'd wet the bed. It makes my heart hurt for you both also. Humiliating a child is never a good way to teach, especially about something so uncontrollable like bedwetting.

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My daughter had a time when she was wetting the bed after having stayed dry for years. I talked to a few people because I wasn't sure why and they told me to have her take part in the cleaning and changing the sheets. I took her to her pediatrician to make sure she wasn't ill. She wasn't, but he said not to pay attention to it or make a big deal if she stayed dry or not. That she had no more control over it than her eye color. She did grow out of it not long afterwards.

I can't imagine the purpose of posting punishments except looking for approval of your parenting.

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I would never do this to one of my kids. How shameful and embarassing!

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That is horrible. I am on FB and I do post pictures of my kids but they're more the "look how adorable my kids are!" And I post cute things they say and I sometimes post semi-negative things (like Odetta said), like, "Today my kids are driving me crazy," but my friends who have kids often do the same thing. Being a mother is exhausting and sometimes connecting with your friends through FB by saying, "These kids!" is helpful because you get some empathy and it kind of brings you back from the edge so that you DON'T end up doing something stupid (like spanking them because you're stuck in the house with them day after day and can't take it anymore). I find sometimes just posting on FB that they're driving me crazy and making it kind of funny can pull me back from the edge. I'm not going to deny that I've done bad things before as a mother, said awful things to my children--I'm crazy after all and I didn't always have the support system I have now--but all in all I'm a good mother and if anything, I am more likely to be ashamed myself for punishing my children inappropriately than I am likely to shame them.

Children aren't fragile but at the same time, it's just...to me the most dangerous parents are the ones who never doubt that they're right.

Edited by Teddy

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Another possibility to consider: some people honestly seem to have no sense of privacy or boundaries when it comes to their online activities. It could very well be self aggrandizing behavior or a deliberate attempt to humiliate the child(ren), but it is also possible that if these are the same sort of people who post pictures on FB of everything else they do as well and update their statuses every time they sneeze that they just have absolutely no filter.

Of course, if the people in question are like that, odds are you'd have them blocked anyway due to their sheer obnoxiousness, but I still thought I'd throw that one out there ; )

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It sounds like public shaming.

Reminds me of the "I eat trash" photos people are taking of their dogs lately.

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