Nixon's Memoirs: Overnight revelations

Sunday, May 16, 2004

Overnight revelations

Bounced some ideas off my co-worker last night about our place of employment, and our expectations of the patients we serve.

Our biggest problem, we agreed, was not with the kids making "mistakes" (such as cursing, stealing, etc.) But the fact that they then refuse to accept responsibility or make any restitution.

It continues to baffle us that, when caught red-handed, the child, after already being consequented for their behavior, will continue to deny any involvement whatsoever, often lengthening their punishment in the process.

What is it about human nature that refuses to allow us to humble ourselves and admit our mistake, learn from it, and then do our best to make it right?

Instead we choose to blame anyone but ourselves, the elusive "society", our parents, our teachers (staff at a facility)the dog that bit us, politicians, postal delivery persons, whoever might be convenient.

Our children will react to a 15 minute "Time Out" with such impulse, that they often end up losing their privledges for an entire day or more because of it, lengthening their stay at the facility.

"In for a penny, in for a pound" comes to mind, I suppose, to explain this phenomenon.

I take solice in the fact that right now, I am about to climb into a warm bed that's in my own home, and that later I can watch any show I wish, surf the web, eat a snack, etc. These small freedoms that we take for granted are hard-earned privledges for the kids at my facility. And in my past experience as a corrections officer, I know that they are for the adults incarcerated as well.

With freedom comes responsibility.

Any negative choice we make must provide a benefit that outweighs the potential consequence of our action.


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