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Lynda Loveland: The punishment!

Posted November 7, 2012

Lynda Loveland

Once upon a time, there was a nine-year-old girl who was banned from trick-or-treating for bad behavior. But, since she felt she was more important than any old punishment, she snuck out anyway.

After her angry parents caught her red-handed at the door dressed as the big, bad wolf, they decided to wait to discipline her and give her punishment some thought. This girl was already under a month-long electronics ban and had her toys removed from her room. Grounding her never really worked and soccer was already over. What would truly make this girl “care” about what she did wrong?


Did I mention this young lady was a tomboy and girly stuff repulsed her?


“I know," said her father. “We can make her wear a dress every day to school for a week!”

At first her mother wasn’t on board, but the more she thought about it, the more she thought it might work.

After a quick shopping trip, the trick-or-treating tomboy showed up to school Monday in a skirt, a cute one even! Her father had already removed extra clothes from her backpack that she’d brought as a backup. But she still took off her skirt and wore just her leggings.

Lesson learned. Her parents picked out dresses for her to wear the rest of the week.

Some may think these parents are humiliating their daughter. I say they’re simply making her care about making bad choices when she didn’t care before. It is her parents job to raise her to be a well-mannered, productive member of society.

Lynda is the mom of three and co-host of Mix 101.5 WRAL-FM's Bill & Lynda in the Morning. Find her here on Thursdays. Click here to like her on Facebook.


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  • RandomCitizen Nov 9, 2012

    9 years old and snuck out. WOW! Let me tell you this, had she been brought up during my generation she would not have snuck out to begin with. If she had I can tell you without a doubt, she would never have even ventured a thought about doing it again. Today's parents and there timeouts or think tank discipline! What a joke!

  • kcastleberry Nov 9, 2012

    I promise I typed in chores not choirs! Darn that auto spell check!

  • SouthernChick Nov 9, 2012

    I think the dress idea is brilliant. Every child reacts and responds differently and sometimes you really have to get creative. But I do think you should go one step further. As a 9 year old, she possibly cannot fully grasp the concept of a 'bad' adult/predator. She may possibly have heard about some amber alerts where the kids get back to the parents/gaurdians within a few hours- but has she heard anything about the children who don't?
    You could probably get your hands on news footage of what can happen to a child out there by themselves. THAT would be a huge lesson for her to see that footage of those stories. Will definately scare the bejesus out of her- but you need to make sure she understands WHY she shouldn't be out alone. I'm in my 30's and I try not to be out by myself.
    Just a little food for thought. Keep up the good work and keep telling us stories about the kiddos. Their stories will be private when they are teenagers; as for now, they are beneficial to us all.

  • piknowles4 Nov 8, 2012

    By the sound of the comments, your daughter will be in reform school by the time she's 11. Lighten up everyone!

  • ncsualum09 Nov 8, 2012

    I understand the idea of public humiliation, my parents used that all the time, I am not sure if it worked or not, but that is for you to judge. It has become a popular style of parenting (posting on your child’s facebook, making them wear a sign, etc)

    I do have to comment on the other comments that discuss how you put your daughter’s life out for the internet and radio to read. I do have to agree with them, it is not fair to your daughter. Her friends’ parents will read this, they will mention it to her friends, who will mention it to her. I can promise you, she will pull away more and more, you will know less and less of her life as she does not want it advertised to the world. My mother is very open on facebook even about our families flaws/shortcomings now, and therefore no one tells her ANYTHING. I cannot imagine if she had a radio show or blog

  • NiceNSmooth Nov 8, 2012

    I say you and your spouse sit down with each other and figure out why a 9 year old disregards your directives as much as you suggest. Can you say 'serious issues of respect'?? Sneaking out at night without anyone's knowlege can be very dangerous for a nine year old child. Very un-cute!

    I have to agree!!! This type of disrespect is not new and if she is doing this at 9 just imagine what she will be doing at 16.

  • kcastleberry Nov 8, 2012

    I also want to mention that a friend of mine got expelled when he was in the 10th grade. Well, his parents went to the principal and asked to allow him to remain AT school doing choirs and let one of his parents oversee it. They wanted him to do choirs like scrubbing the floors with a toothbrush while all his friends walked by. He worked from the first bell to the last everyday of his suspension while one of his parents stood over him to make sure he did it. He was not only mortified, but he NEVER got in trouble again! He was a model student and son from then on out. Another friend snuck out and went joy riding with some kids his parents didn't approve of. He was brough home by a police officer so for the next week he was made to move a pile of bricks one by one from one area to another in his yard. Harsh punishment? Yes, but they wanted him alive to tell about it. He learned his lesson as well and was humbled by the experience. Also became a model kid.

  • kcastleberry Nov 8, 2012

    I was hardheaded as the day is long as a kid and not much worked for me either, but my Mom would ALWAYS advertise it to everyone (church, family, school, neighborhood, etc) whenever I did something to be severely punished for. It made a HUGE difference for me. It did embarrass me, but it made more of an impact on my future behavior than anything else did. She would often ground me for an entire 9 weeks and she NEVER let up on it. No earning points off for good behavior. It never hurt me, it was good for me. I applaud you for 'hitting her where it hurts'. Please ignore all the people that say otherwise. They can coddle their kids and baby them all they want to, but their kids will be the ones in jail as teens. You can not overlook this kind of behavior. She knows you are on the radio and you have a blog so more than likely she was looking forward to the notoriety this would get her with her friends. She thought it was cute. I think you nipped it in the bud. Good for you & your husband!

  • kvasaturo Nov 8, 2012

    Ok, now that I have gotten beyond the fact this is on the Internet...

    I would not make her wear dresses as a punishment. You've already taken away toys and electronics. I would give her additional chores and she would have to earn the those things back. I would also have a reward system to praise good behavior so she is not just getting attention from being punished. Acting out and defiance is usually about testing limits and craving attention. This is just my advice. I'm far from a perfect parent. When my children misbehave they have to write me a paper about their misbehavior - why it was wrong and dealing with the consequences of it. I find it to be much more effective than taking something away from them (Although I do that too!). When I take something away they find something to replace it -- even if it's a half broken crayon and a piece of scrap paper! Writing about their behavior really gets them thinking about their actions.

  • vjayd Nov 8, 2012

    so now she can associate wearing dresses as "punishment". smh