Friday, September 20, 2013

Avoid Name Calling

                                       Avoid Name Calling
                                       by Grandma Jeddah
If your child’s misbehavior leads to your feeling hurt or angry, it’s possible your child is trying to get back at you for mistreating him.  This situation often results in a vicious cycle.  Your child gets angry and acts out rebelliously.   Mother gets back at the child for his vengeful behavior and the child responds back again.  Keep in mind that infants do not seek revenge, and toddlers may not realize this is what they are doing. 
Acting out your frustration or anger when disciplining your child is completely counterproductive to developing a loving and understating relationship.  It can lead to unintended physical harm that causes your child to become resentful and even develop feelings of hate towards parents.  Your child has been enjoined by Allah to be kind to you, not to even say a simple disrespectful word to you.  Acting out your anger toward him makes obeying this command from Allah difficult for your child. 
Don’t be deluded--Muslim parents are not immune from the frustrations which lead to child maltreatment.  Neither are they protected from the resultant unfavorable ramifications that can result from their own uncontrolled emotions getting out of hand.  This is one significant reason why it’s imperative parents seek alternative methods of discipline to physically hitting their child.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا يَسْخَرْ قَومٌ مِّن قَوْمٍ عَسَى أَن يَكُونُوا خَيْرًا مِّنْهُمْ وَلَا نِسَاء مِّن نِّسَاء عَسَى أَن يَكُنَّ
خَيْرًا مِّنْهُنَّ وَلَا تَلْمِزُوا أَنفُسَكُمْ وَلَا تَنَابَزُوا بِالْأَلْقَابِ بِئْسَ الاِسْمُ الْفُسُوقُ بَعْدَ الْإِيمَانِ وَمَن لَّمْ يَتُبْ
فَأُوْلَئِكَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ
O ye who believe! Let not some men among you laugh at others: It may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): Nor let some women laugh at others: It may be that the (latter are better than the (former): Nor defame nor be sarcastic to each other, nor call each other by (offensive) nicknames: Ill-seeming is a name connoting wickedness, (to be used of one) after he has believed: And those who do not desist are (indeed) doing wrong.
 (Quran 49:11)
Another way parents hurt their children’s feelings is by calling them hurtful names.  Telling your child he is bad, stupid, crazy, and other hurtful words can humiliate your child.  Some parents use words such as these lightly and don’t consider them anything serious.  No one likes to be called names, even in jest. It lowers a person’s self-esteem and causes one to resent the speaker.

Using words such as these can break down the relationship between you and your child.  Your child is more willing to cooperate with you--even when it’s against his wishes-- when you two have a respectful, understanding and cooperative relationship. 

Grandma Jeddah is the mother of 11 children and 13 grandchildren. She has taught hundreds of students for over 30 years at an Islamic school in Los Angeles, California.This is an excerpt from her book, Discipline without Disrespecting: Discover the Hidden Secrets of How to Effectively Discipline Your Muslim Child--And Keep Your Peace of Mind while at It.  Subscribe to her free newsletter at --

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