The idea that punishment teaches a kid not to misbehave is a myth, pure and simple. Here are three steps for actually changing your kid’s unpleasant behavior.
Punishment–mild, severe, abusive–changes behavior only at the moment it is delivered. It doesn’t change the overall level or rate of the behavior. So if you have a child that is doing something horrible and you smack them, it’ll stop it for the moment, but it won’t decrease the number of times they do the horrible thing.
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