One of the most primary tasks of any parent is to facilitate the development of the Adapted Child ego state in their son or daughter.
When a child is born it is all Free Child ego state. The parents must do something to the child such that the Adapted Child ego state increases and is used by the son or daughter when necessary. The child learns how to conform when necessary such that it can exist in a society. It learns how to behave appropriately when necessary. So over time the FC must decrease and the AC must increase. How much the AC must develop is a matter of debate. However that is not the topic of discussion here. What is to be discussed is how parents can go about doing that with their son or daughter.
In this diagram CC has been used instead of AC
There are many ways it can be done and most are well known. The parents can use techniques like time out, consequences of behaviour or simply talking with the child such that it understands why it needs to conform in a particular situation.
There is another way to get a child to conform that is particularly effective. It involves using emotions. These are quite powerful at getting a child to behave in a way the parents want and hence they are used because they do work. There are three emotions that can be used in this way and they are fear, guilt and shame.
These are obviously painful emotions that people do not like feeling. As a result people, including children will modify their behaviour in order not too feel them.
If things go wrong here she could end up feeling shame.
Parents can use the fear of abandonment to get a child to conform.
“Unless you go to bed now mummy will get a policeman to come and take you away.”
A child at a playground is not following mother’s directive to leave now to go home. Mother just starts to walk away in the direction of home. Most children will begin to squeal loudly in protest (and fear) at mother walking away. Eventually however most will succumb, leave the playground and follow mother. It works.
“Mummy felt upset and really sad that you did not behave properly at nana's house.”
“You promised mummy you would clean up your room and you haven’t done it.”
The child feels guilt and it works so next time the child will behave in the way mother wants it to.
“You should be ashamed of yourself for...”
The parent in some way derides or humiliates the child in front of its peers or siblings.
The child feels shame and it works so next time the child will behave in the way mother wants it to.
These two children are being compliant. How has that been achieved?
These are usually quite effective ways of getting a child to modify its behaviour to do what mother wants. They work.
But there is a problem. They have unwanted long term side effects. The boy who has been threatened with abandonment by mother may grow up and have dysfunctional relationships with women because of it.
He may constantly feel the threat of abandonment and become pathologically jealous. He may habitually pick women who do cheat on him and leave.
He may forever remain single because he fears the abandonment that might one day happen.
If shaming is used as a way to get a son to conform then he will grow up and develop what is called a shame prone personality. In adulthood he will experience the feeling of shame more often than others do. Shame is a very unpleasant emotion and can have devastating consequences on the self esteem. Many a social phobia can have some kind of shame component as can happen with chronic shyness or a sense of just feeling worthless.