Correction That Corrects: Chapter XIV, part VII

PERSISTENCY IN SPITE OF AUTHORATATIVE DECISION. Perseverance and determination are very desirable qualities in the child as well as in the adult, but persistency in having one’s own way regardless of a higher decision is not commendable and, in the case of a child, should not be tolerated. The mother or governess should not permit a child to “fairly annoy,” by its insisting on gaining a different decision. I have in mind the case of a boy now of about fourteen, and it is little less than disgusting to hear him “bound” his mother if he fails to gain such permission as caprice suggests. I have been informed that this boy, as a mere baby, just would not give up, but usually won out in his desires.

Here, again, I say that the one in authority does an injustice to the child, to the future man, to give in unless the child is right and the one in authority wrong. The mother or governess should sufficiently weigh the question, but, once a decision has been reached and acted on, no persuasion of the child should have any effect. By no means does this suppose that the older child should not be permitted to reason with parent or governess, but in the case of a baby or very young child, no woman can consider herself of character if she cannot decide just what is right and proper to dictate to the baby or child. When I am sure that my dictation or command is right and just I demand that there be no further “teasing” or persistence. To the child who starts to persist, I say, “I have spoken, I know what is best and I will not permit any further talk. If you bother me further, I will spank you.”

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