The other day I saw some programs on TV about contrasts. In one family the daughter had nothing to do other than be beautiful and prepare herself for beauty pagent competitions. In another program a family had their three children to work hard in their parents restaurant.
The pagent girl, didn't had to lift one single finger. The parents did all the work. In a restaurant, she was rude to a waitress and this seemed normal to her. Writing simple sentence was not that simple, even though she was 16. In order to make some changes, she had to prepare something to eat for a change. Since this was the first time for her, it was not the perfect meal. But at least she did an effort. The person who was trying to help and change, complemented her on her effort and enjoyed the meal. The father however told his daughter this meal was not what he was used to. Instead of helping his daughter, he was crying her down.
On the other hand the parents did everything for their daughter. But is doing everything for her really helping her ?
The three children in the restaurant worked very hard and seemed to love it to a certain extend. Ufortunately, they had no time for fun. As soon as they came home,there again they had to help around the house. Their rooms was so empty, nothing on the walls. When trying to help here and give the children more time for themselves, the father did not appreciate this. His children received money for their work at the restaurant and he was about to give his children their last cheque.
The restaurant was their parents dream, a way to give their children a good home... And structure was important to them.
Here we have two extremes. It is good to give a child a certain freedom, however, a child does need bounderies. Children do need structure, without it, they are lost. It's not because you set bounderies and rules, children will hate you for that. Quite contrary.
When working for Club Med, I worked with the Mini Club. I remembered going to the beach with my group. I had them lined up two by two and I stood completely at the end, so I had a view over my group. They stopped at each point I indicated them to. A simple word was enough to make my point clear. However, I took my time when they were playing. A collegue told me I was way too hard on them. When going to the beach, his group was everywhere. In fact, it was the children going to the beach rather than him going with them.
As long as you respect children, they will respect you. There was a lot which was allowed, but when I said stop, they did. Didn't need much to say, they knew up front when I asked them to stop, I meant it and there was a reason for it.
Children need structure, you can still give them treats, as long as you don't spoil them.