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The Rules of Parenting, 2nd Edition by Richard Templar

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RULE 40

Be consistent

When I was a kid, I could answer my mum back one day and she’d laugh and tell me she was pleased I could stand up for myself. Next day I could say the same thing and get walloped for it. And there was never any clue to which way she’d go. This applied not only to giving her backchat, but to most other things too. It meant I spent a lot of my time walking on eggshells.

It also meant I had no idea what was and wasn’t allowed – it seemed to be decided on some kind of secret lottery basis which I wasn’t privy to. So there was little point in regulating my behaviour. After all, I might get into trouble, but then again I might not. It generally seemed worth the risk – certainly to me.

Your kids are just the same. They need to ...

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