Encouragement Can Be Cruel

spoiled-kidA couple days ago I went into Sports Clips to get my hair cut (my new favorite place).  As I arrived I sat down and patiently waited my turn to sit in the stylist’s chair.  As I sat there I couldn’t help but notice the three or four year old child currently getting his hair cut.

I cringed as he squealed to the top of his lungs.  Apparently he wasn’t a fan of getting his hair cut.  I looked around the corner and saw the little blond boy sitting in his mother’s lap who was the one actually sitting in the stylist chair.  The boy was in her lap facing her, latched on to her with both hands as the lady was trying to trim the back of his hair.




For more get:

The Jerk Whisperer


The Jerk Whisperer – How to Keep Adults Acting Like Adults

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24 thoughts on “Encouragement Can Be Cruel

  1. eadavisblog says:

    I agree, and I am glad you said it.

  2. ekurie says:

    Wow, that’s what I call negative reinforcement. What is the matter with parents these days?? They all seem afraid of their children. It’s pathetic. And as you say, they aren’t doing those kids a bit of good.

  3. Andrea says:

    I normally don’t comment on things like this, especially since I used to be the same way. But what if that child has some kind of sensory issue or other problem that may not be visible. We shouldn’t judge others before we take a walk in their shoes.

    • I agree with you on it not being another’s place to judge someone. But lets keep in perspective what I said. I didn’t say they parents should be thrown in jail for the way they acted. I simply said it was wrong. And if the child has a disability or doesn’t (which I pray is the case), what he is being taught is not good for him either way.

  4. Rajiv says:

    Yes. This is something that I have seen very often. We encourage bad behaviour for various reasons, and this leads to long term problems. This is often due to the weakness of the person giving the encouragement

  5. aquene7 says:

    This made me laugh because as a parent I recognise those moments. The truth is barbers can be traumatic like dentists. I learnt to cut my son’s hair until he became older and less frightened:-) However, I do agree with you:-)

  6. I’m positive I’ve been that parent upon occasion! I think that sometimes it is just easier as a parent, and a boss, to reinforce the negative behavior in order to try and get through the experience. Doesn’t make it right, and I think it’s a good reminder that we should keep our minds and hearts open to those experiences in the future so that we don’t end up hindering someone else’s progress. I had, what I thought was, a productive discussion with an employee the other day, only to discover that she ended up in tears and wondering if she needed to be looking for another job. That’s her go-to “do I need to look for another job?” And in the future, I’ll answer “yes, because if you feel that was an offense that should result in your termination, then you probably do need to be elsewhere.” It sounds harsh, but if that is the question they are always asking, then there is something going on and I don’t think coddling and continuing to tell them that they are doing a good job is the proper way to make them stand up and be able to handle it on their own.

  7. Absolutely agree…now multiply this situation across this country…add some time…watch the deterioration happen. Sad.

  8. witzshared says:

    Spot on as usual. Let’s check on him in a few years when he starts getting trophies just for participation in team sports.

  9. vicbriggs says:

    Wow. I can’t believe that they actually did that. It sounds like they’ve been doing a bad job of it for quite a while…

  10. The Simple Italians says:

    Very well put. Sad but far too prevalent reality. We see this happening all the time, so unfortunately it’s not just limited to the USA, but also here in Italy. We need to pray for parents everywhere to have wisdom to know when the child needs comfort and when he needs discipline, and to meet the need of the moment. Love sometimes has to be tough!

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