Here’s your sign…

I’m sure some people will take issue with this post, but frankly I don’t care. I’m very sick; I have slept very poorly for the past 5 nights; I’m stuck in a stupid airport with a billion other cranky travelers, and therefore I have the implicit right to be offensive today.

This morning as Sam and I were getting ready to leave the warmth and comfort of our hotel, we flipped on the tube for some background noise. At that particular time of day (o’dark thirty) all that was on was news. Normally I’d find news to be boring and offensive, but this morning as I was stumbling around in a cold medicine stupor a headline caught my ears – “Mother punishes her son with a sign”

I’m not sure where in America it happened, but a woman who was at her wits end with her defiant 12 year old son made him stand on a street corner for two hours holding a sign that said “I’m a liar and a thief.”

As the story goes, the kid was caught smoking behind the school. Now just about every kid I know has been caught smoking a cigarette before, but this one actually stole the money for the cigarettes from his mother’s purse, and then lied about it when he was confronted on it. His mother has tried other forms of punishment – spanking, grounding, taking away privileges, etc. but apparently she’s had little success with the standard forms of punishment. So, like any woman on the brink of desperation, she got creative and decided to try humiliation.

When asked why she did this to her son, she matter-of-factly stated that she’d rather take these kinds of drastic measures now and have him learn the lesson, instead of visiting him in jail or at the cemetery.

Quite frankly I think she was brilliant. This is obviously a mother who loves her son very much and doesn’t want to see him take the easy path of self-destruction. She should be commended, and I truly hope her son has learned his lesson.

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One thought on “Here’s your sign…

  1. Niecey

    Unfortunately I don’t think the shame tactic works and often has long term implications for the kids into adulthood. And I don’t believe that making kids feel worse necessarily makes them behave better. But I completely agree that this woman loves her son and is trying to help him have the best chances in life and to raise him well, and deserves a pat on the back for that. I hope you guys get home soon. So sorry to hear of the trouble being stuck there.

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