Interesting conversation with an eleven old.
My son is easily distracted. I had taken him to the local pool as a treat and was trying to get his attention. The decision had to be made: do we meet mum for lunch or stay and swim?
The answer was obvious. Clearly there was a lot more fun to be had at the pool. A youngster nearby noticed my struggle to attract and hold my son’s attention. “It’s a lack of discipline” the boy advises.
I consider the comment for a moment. “Yes. It could be. ”
“My dad disciplines me all the time. It’s normal you know. You need to give him plenty of discipline. ”
I’m not sure where this is going but sure this unknown boy could be right. Maybe my son does need more discipline.
“Good discipline involves punishment. You need to hit them. ”
There is much heated debate over whether it is alright to physically punish children. I’m on whatever side the evidence is on. Right now the evidence is pretty clearly on the side of a child’s right to live free from fear of violence. (Remember that your anecdotes are not reliable evidence). Besides a man hitting a defenceless child just isn’t right!
I decide to inform the boy that I will never hit my child. Violence against children is never necessary.
“My dad tells me it’s okay. It’s normal to hit a child. It says so in the Bible”