I recently read a passage on education referring to John Holt's ideas about parenting. I thought it might be a good idea to capture this quote, in which Holt says:
"If I had to make a general rule for living and working with children, it might be this: be wary of saying or doing anything to a child that you would not do to another adult, whose good opinion and affection you valued."
This is the golden rule of reciprocity applied to parenting. I wanted to quote the above because it continues the theme from the compassion entry I wrote last week. Once you hold to this belief, it becomes extremely difficult to justify any kind of coerciveness over behaviors that simply do not harm the child or another person.