TV’s Influence On Children-2

Do You Use TV as a Reward, or to Punish Bad Behavior? This is ultimately not a good idea either way. Rewards and punishments need to relate to the behavior as closely as possible.

For example, if your child fails to come inside from playing with the neighbors after you repeatedly call for them, an appropriate punishment would be to not allow them to play with neighbor kids or outside for "x" number of days. Punishing your child by taking away a TV program would not be relevant to the situation.

On the other hand, if you offer TV as a reward for a certain evening, what if the programs on TV that evening are all inappropriate for your child? Do you take back your offer, disappointing your child? If so, your child may learn they cannot trust you as their parent to keep promises for good behavior.

At the same time, using TV as a reward and punishment system puts too much importance and value on television. Use rewards and punishments that relate to the behaviors at hand. Instead, choose rewards and punishments based on the values of the family and what your family finds important.

*Source: Parent Group Counseling by Frieda A. Lang, Ed. D.

Written by: Tamara Wilhelm MA, LMHC, LCAC

*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling  at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.