How to Raise a Juvenile Delinquent
by W. Clement Stone
Very often, it is possible to use a negative approach to achieve a positive action.
One of the finest examples of this technique is the following set of rules from The Presbyterian Journal. Negative and shocking in their context, they were written to provoke every parent into taking one or more positive steps. How many of these rules for the raising of a juvenile delinquent are you following?
1. Begin from infancy to give the child everything he wants. This way he will grow up to believe that they world owes him a living.
2. When he picks up bad words, laugh at him. It will encourage him to pick up "cuter" phrases that will blow the top off your head later.
3. Never give him any spiritual training. Wait until he is twenty-one and then let him decide for himself.
4. Avoid the use of the word "wrong". It may develop a guilt complex. This will condition him to believe later, when he is arrested for stealing a car, that society is against him and he is being persecuted.
5. Pick up anything he leaves lying around-books, shoes, clothing. Do everything for him so he will be experienced in throwing the responsibility onto others.
6. Let him read any printed matter he can get his hands on. Be careful the silverware and drinking glasses are sterilized, but let his mind feed on garbage.
7. Quarrel frequently in the presence of the children. Then they won’t be too shocked when the home is broken up.
8. Give the child all the spending money he wants. Never let him earn his own. Why should he have things as tough as you had them?
9. Satisfy his every craving for food, drink, and comfort. See that every desire is gratified. Denial may lead to harmful frustrations.
10. Take his part against the neighbors, teachers, and policemen. They are all prejudiced against your child.
11. When he gets into real trouble, apologize for yourself by saying, "I never could do anything with him."
12. Prepare for a life of grief-you will have it.
Source: Success Unlimited. June, 1970, pgs. 10 & 11.