"Dad Of The Year" Or Bully? Dad Made His 10-Year-Old Son Run To School In The Rain As A Punishment For Bullying

Date August 10, 2018

What do you think parents should do when they find out their kids are bullying others? How are parents supposed to teach their kids that this kind of behavior is wrong? One dad learned his 10-year-old son was bullying kids on the school bus and decided to teach him a lesson.

READ ALSO: 7 Not-So-Obvious Signs That Your Child Is Being Bullied

Dad made his son run to school in the rain for bullying

Bryan Thornhill, the dad, made his son, Hayden, run a mile from home to school for a week. He filmed a video of the boy running to school in the rain. Bryan followed his son in the car all the while. In the video, Bryan explains what his son was punished for, and why he thinks what he does is good parenting.

The dad noted Hayden’s behavior actually improved. He said in the video:

He hasn't got in trouble at school this week, whereas last week he was absolutely out of his mind. This right here is called parenting.

After Bryan shared the video (which he since deleted) on Facebook, it quickly became viral. The story was covered by a number of news outlets nationwide, and many people expressed their approval of this dad’s parenting ways:

WDBJ7, the local news station, followed up on the story. They asked the boy himself what he thought about the punishment, and he said he deserved it.

The dad doesn’t pay attention to people criticizing his parenting style. It seems to work, right?

READ ALSO: How To Motivate Children The Correct Way According To A Psychologist

Do any punishments work?

There’s been a debate surrounding the issue of physical punishment. Many experts argue that physical punishment is a form of abuse, and parents should never ever resort to it if they really want to teach their children a lesson.

What we see in the video above certainly can’t be described as physical punishment. The boy may be uncomfortable, but it doesn’t hurt to run a mile from home to school for a few days. Moreover, his dad says his behavior improved as a result. But is this effect short-lived?

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Psychologist Michael Karson argues that punishment in general doesn’t deter children from engaging in undesired behaviors. According to Karson, parents should reinforce positive behavior instead of punishing kids for bad behavior.

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In one of his articles on Psychology Today, Karson wrote why he thinks punishment doesn't work:

As soon as the child thinks it’s not being watched (as soon as the situation seems different in some way), the tendency to engage in the behavior will reassert itself. Punished children do what was punished behind their parents’ backs, or as soon as they get to college. Sure, I suppose you could arrange for a totalitarian state to ensure that the person is always feeling watched and thereby inhibit the behavior permanently under an umbrella of anxiety, numbness, and hate (the emotions that punishment produces). But even then, the tendency (or desire) to engage in the punished behavior will not change.

Anyway, most parents say the carrot and stick method is what works best. And what do you think?

READ ALSO: 5 Useful Tips For Parents To Help Children In Managing Anger