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A child that misbehaved is sitting in the principal's office

Is "I'm Sorry" Enough?

Dr. Charles Fay


I'm asked quite often, "When my child misbehaves or causes a problem for someone, he's quick to say, 'I'm sorry.' Is that enough, or should he have a consequence?"

Common sense tells us that actions speak louder than words. That's why it's important that our kids do more than just apologize. Let's take a look at an example:

Parent:  This is so sad. You rode your bike right through Mrs. Wilson's flowers. What are you going to do?

Child:  Uh... say 'I'm sorry'?

Parent:  That's a great start! What can you do to show her that you are sorry?

Child:  I don't know.

Parent:  Would you like to hear some ideas?

Child:  What?

Parent:  Some kids decide to buy some new flowers and plant them for her. How would that work?

Child:  I don't have any money.

Parent:  Other kids ask their parents to buy some new flowers, and they pay their parents back by doing lots of extra chores. Let me know what you decide. Good luck.

That's Love and Logic.

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