5.2 Describe how reflecting on own personal history increases self-awareness During my childhood, I was disciplined on a regular basis, sometimes for no apparent reason. I was not a naughty or unruly child but I was physically punished, in the form of being smacked with either my mother’s hand or the heel of a slipper. I was also verbally abused by my mother shouting at me all the time at everything I did. I was often left feeling very undervalued and useless and was always told that “You should have done better”. I did not agree with my mother administering physical violence towards me, I lost respect and any affection that I had left for her. I was scared of her at first but later in my teens I stood up to her taking the slipper out of her hand and telling her she would not be hitting me with it. The physical violence then ceased, but she still threatened me with it, but I would just walk out of the house returning when she had calmed down. As I grew up, I made the decision that if I had children then I would never physically or verbally punish/abuse them, that I would be firm, but fair and explain to them why I had to deal with them the way I did. Paul and I have one daughter, Emily, whom we have never physically or verbally abused. I would never make a child feel unloved and undervalued as my mother had made me feel. If Emily came in late from being out with her friends, we would explain that we had all agreed a time she was supposed to be out until and that if she had broken that agreement, she would have to face the consequences of her actions. I was aware how my mother had made me feel so negative with the way in which she punished me and I dealt with Emily with an increased awareness in a more positive manner. Usually, we would ground her or remove privileges ie. pocket money or not taking her to Army Cadets. She soon learnt that if she kept within the rules agreed that she could carry on her activities which she enjoyed.
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