Is it just me, or are parents getting a little extreme with their punishments lately? First there was the whole public shaming/sign holding trend, then there were the parents who had their kids arrested for having a party, then there was the dad who called the cops on his 19-year-old son for "stealing his truck" to buy cigarettes (the young man was tragically shot dead by police). Now we have the story of yet another mom enlisting the help of law enforcement officials to reprimand her child -- except this kid didn't steal a truck or throw a party, she stole candy. Oh yeah, and did I mention she's 5 YEARS OLD?? Uh, yup.
Apparently when one Puyallup, Washington, mother found out her 5-year-old daughter snagged some candy from the store, instead of making her shame-facedly return the treats or simply going back to pay for it herself and then taking away the kid's TV time or whatever, she decided that the best way to make sure her child never stole again would be to take her straight to the police station.
Now, luckily for everyone involved, the police officer on duty played along like a champ and was super sweet -- even giving the little girl a hug after she promised him she'd never steal again. So maybe all's well that ends well? Except I just can't for the life of me imagine taking the "scared straight" approach with my 8- or 12-year-old children, let alone a kid who's still in kindergarten! Honestly, just try and picture walking your tiny little 5-year-old into a police station. What sort of horrifying images must have been running through that little girl's head? Was she envisioning spending the rest of her life behind bars? All the while knowing it was mom who ratted her out??
I guess, hey, whatever works for you. And who knows, maybe someday my kids will be career criminals and then that mom will have the last laugh, but until then, I still can't get behind this particular disciplinary tactic.
Would you take your candy-stealing 5-year-old to the police station?
Image via rumpleteaser/Flickr