Bribing children is a common tactic of today’s parents, reports Martha Irvine of AP.
Call it a reward, or just “bribery.”
Whichever it is, many parents today readily admit to buying off their children, who get goodies for anything from behaving in a restaurant to sleeping all night in their own beds.
Often, the rewards are for behaviors their own parents would have simply expected, just because they said so. The new dynamic — sometimes seen as a backlash to that strictness — has some parenting experts wondering if today’s parents have gone too soft.
My parents never bribed us — except when my father offered me a car if I promised never to start smoking. I told him I had no intention of smoking and my self-respect wouldn’t permit me to accept a bribe.
I didn’t offer my daughter anything but the choice of a “pleasant, cheerful mother” if she did what I wanted or a “mean, grumpy mother” if she did not. Sensibly, she took the first option.