Certain Consequences For Certain Behaviors2 min read

There is usually only one or two “regular” consequences for negative behaviors that we use, just to keep things predictable and consistent. However, there are some behaviors that needtheir own special consequence.

A blog reader wrote:

We don’t have a “rule” or certain consequence set up for every behavior in the book (nor do we want so many specific rules!) So, I’m wondering if “just-plain-not-doing-what-you-know-you-should” (be kind, be respectful, be responsible, be honest, don’t hit, tease, talk back, etc.) would be considered “not following instructions”, and would it then be followed up with the usual – an extra job, followed by SODAS, then major maintenance, and 24 hours without privileges…? Or is it better to assign certain consequences to certain behaviors? (Like your family’s consequence for taking things without asking – the missing brownies from the freezer story you told)

Being kind, respectful, responsible, and honest could all fall under following instructions unless your family has had a meeting about it and changed the consequence (- or +) to something else.

For instance, in our family, if someone doesn’t do an honest chore, lies, etc, that person earns 30 minutes of work time, because that’s what was decided in a family meeting.

Being responsible is part of Following Instructions already. “Do the task immediately, and check back.”

Being respectful is also already in Following Instructions. When someone is talking to you, you “look at the person and keep a calm voice and a calm face.” Being kind is an overall family feeling that should have been talked about a lot, so it has been given as an instruction already.

Hitting, teasing, and talking back are all either AcceptingNo, Accepting a Consequence, or Disagreeing Appropriately. So,isit better to assign certain consequences to certain behaviors?

We make some new consequences from time to time at family meetings etc, to teach the children self government and problem solving. We try not to do too many though, because having too many can make it hard to remember them all.

Great Question,