Week 12: Transitions in Marriage: Power Relations and Children

So I know you have heard of vitamin D, C, B, B12, but have you every heard of vitamin N? You probably haven’t and did you know that many children and some adults lack this very crucial vitamin. So now you are trying to Google this and see what good this vitamin will do for you. Well what if I told you this vitamin is not something that you take, it is a very special vitamin that will help you with your physical, mental and emotional health, now you think I am crazy and you want to get your hands on this new miracle vitamin. What if I told you I already have an abundance of vitamin N that you can start utilizing right now! Now you really want to know what this vitamin really is, well this vitamin is the word no. Yes, that is right, No!

In Dr. Richard B. Millar paper, “Who is the boss? Power Relationships in Families”, he speaks about how parents are the leaders in the family. Dr. Millar states that, “Discipline is probably one of the most important elements in which a mother and father can lead and guide and direct their children” (Millar, 2008, p.1). I think in these times, many parents are afraid to say “no” to their children, but this is not what their children really need. Most children, though they do not show it, thrive from the word no. “No” allows you to set boundaries and rules, it also lets children know that they are cared and loved. “No” allows you to make sure that your children are ready for the real world, they understand that there are consequences to their actions and they are able to understand right from wrong. When we are able to discipline our children, we are raising children who are respect authority, who are prepared for the real world, who are able to full fledge adults and who do not just sit around waiting for their life to be handed to them.

“No” can be such a powerful word, it can be used for both good and evil. When used for evil, “no” can turn into something that stops a child from growing, or being able to explore the world. “No” as an evil, does not allow a child to use their agency to make their own decisions, it does not allow them to learn the law of natural consequences. When you use the word “no” for good, you allow your child to be able to explore the world, but with guide lines and rules. You allow your children to use their agency to learn about the world around them. You allow them to understand consequences and you allow them to be able to learn that when they make mistakes, the world does not end it continues and everyone goes about their day.  When we empower our children with the word “no, we allow them to be able to see the world in such a great light. We let them conquer their fears, we let them explore, and we let them learn. The word “no” might be one of the greatest gifts that we can give our children.


Miller, R.B. Who is the boss? Power relationships in Families. BYU Conference on Family, March 28,2008.


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