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Gordon Family Discipline Mantra

The following is a collection of some of the discipline sayings Maggie and I repeat to ourselves and each other:

1.) Tell the truth even when it hurts. Our hope is that by being honest about little things when young, that we will establish a foundation of honesty that will pay off when the child is older. Examples of little lies, “Mommy doesn’t have any more money to buy you candy”. It is much better to tell the child the truth, “ I do not want to buy you any more candy as it is not good for you”. This honesty should be age appropriate. There is little benefit in explaining the “birds and bees” to a 3 year old when she asks “Where do babies come from?”.

2.) When you are struggling with your toddler ask yourself, “What am I teaching my child?”. Often parents realize they are the basis for the problem. With our first child we brought a lollipop to church to pacify her during the service. When she made noise we gave it to her. She is smart and learned the lesson well: scream at church and you will get candy.

3.) When discipline is “black and white” your must act. By “black and white” we mean when the child knows they are doing the wrong thing and understands the consequences. There are a lot of times as a parent where the situation is unclear and you do not know if you should discipline your child. As parents we often pass up discipline opportunities, because we are too busy or frankly don’t like to punish our children. When the situation is clear (it is black and white) you must follow through with discipline.

4.) Train your children to answer when spoken to. A simple “Yes Mom” or “Yes Ma’am” works well. By responding the child acknowledges they heard and is the first step of obedience.

5.) Use the golden rule. Treat others as you would want to be treated. Sure this applies from brother to sister, but it also applies between parent to child. We often remind our children of this rule, but need to remind ourselves of it more often.


Written February 2011 by
Dr. Gordon, Orlando Pediatrician






gregorygordonmd.com is intended to help parents understand the needs and behaviors of children. The information presented in the site is the opinion of Gregory Gordon, M.D.and does not reflect the opinion of his partners. This website is owned exclusively by Doctors insights LLC. The advice in this site does not apply to all children. Always consult your healthcare provider for your individual needs.

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