Parenting

5 Differences between bribes and rewards for your child

Sugandha Tiwari
3 to 7 years

Created by Sugandha Tiwari
Updated on Oct 09, 2017

5 Differences between bribes and rewards for your child

Many a times in the process of parenting and doing behaviour management of our children, we use different techniques for different set of expectations and demands. Some of the techniques work and some don't. But often knowingly or unknowingly we are unable to differentiate between what is an appropriate reward and how it can become a bribe.

Is Bribing Your Child Right Or Wrong?

So what if we bribe our children? Is there anything wrong in it? Well, nothing wrong on the face of it however the very nature of bribes is manipulative which can have its own consequences in the future. Also the tricky part about bribes is that they serve the purpose in the moment. Bribe will not help you solve your purpose of teaching responsibility and respect.

There are quite subtle signs of bribe and once your child learn to identify these signs and catches the trigger behind them, he/she will then use it to every time have his/her way. Let's read further to understand the difference between the two.

Understanding The Differences Between Reward And Bribe

  1. In simple words we reward our children for good behaviour or target behaviour for eg. Cleaning the space and keeping back toys in place after playing or finishing the food and then going out for play. Bribes on the other hand are given for the purpose of avoiding a particular behaviour for eg. To avoid the behaviour of your child when he makes a complete mess of the house with other sibling or friends in your absence
  2. If you are calm, composed and rather happy and offering a token of appreciation then for sure it's a reward, but if you are like really stressed out, upset and freaked out and then giving something then undoubtedly it is a bribe. For eg. You have guests at home or you are just having fun with your friends and your child begins doing things around deliberately to seek attention and you offer him an ipad so that he gets occupied with that. Wherein the time for ipad usage was fixed but to get rid of attention seeking you offered a bribe to him/her
  3. Whenever your child asks you for something before completing a task which he/she should have anyway done at the first place is a bribe whereas if you give something without any set expectation from the child then it is a reward. Reward will motivate your child; bribe will give them undue power. For eg. Talking politely with the grandparent is an obvious expectation, if your child asks you for something in return if he/she has displayed expected behaviour then it's a bribe
  4. Parenting is not done only when children are young, it goes forever. If your child learn to bargain for everything, then it will be very tough for you to break this pattern. Rewards will always make your child proud and will give you a dominant position
  5. Last but not the least, your children don't know what is appropriate and what is not, so they will try every possible thing that they are observing in the environment orhave learnt during the developmental stage where they were checking your reactions. If you can understand this fine difference between rewards and bribes, then you will make your own life easier and your child's life more fulfilling and rewarding and your relationship more positive

In a nutshell, dear parents be kind to yourself.There will be times when you may not be able to fulfil on all their demands, start preparing them now.

Did you like the blog on bribes and rewards for your child? Do you think bribing sometimes to get your child do what you want them to do is right or is it wrong? Please do share your views below in the comments section with us, as we would love to hear from you.

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| Nov 01, 2017

thank u ......... its very helpful to understand and fulfil my baby's need

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| Oct 11, 2017

very nice

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| Oct 11, 2017

thank u its really helpful

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| Oct 11, 2017

very nice.

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| Oct 11, 2017

nice blog.. very often we fail to differentiate between the two and unknowingly do the wrong thing.

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| Oct 11, 2017

really appreciating

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| Oct 09, 2017

In my opinion bribing is incorrect no matter what the situation is. once child gets used to it, he/she will not budge until bribed. he /she would do a task to fulfill his greed and not because he wants to do it or its the right thing to do .we as parents need to understand that thin line between rewarding and bribing and act appropriately. thanks Sugandha Tiwari for sharing this useful blog.

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| Oct 09, 2017

Thanks for differenciating between reward and bribe as we often mingle these two and unknowingly bribe our children instead of rewarding.

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