top of page
Glancer Magazine

PARENTING | Parenting without Shame: 3 Ways to Break the Cycle


Parenting without shame can be tricky, especially for those of us who were raised without positive discipline. Even now, with parenting resources seemingly everywhere, many of us struggle to address our kids' behavior in ways that set boundaries while also modeling respect for our children.

Still, we know we want better for our kids than the shame-based methods that were common when we were growing up.

Parenting without shame is a radical act of cycle breaking.

Many of us remember firsthand what it felt like to feel ashamed of our behavior as kids--and not exactly supported in the ways we needed.

...children believe they deserve whatever treatment we give them—not because of what they’ve done but because of who they are...Therefore, if [a child is punished], they may think it’s because they are bad..."

We know that shaming kids isn't effective parenting. Rather, we want our children to feel our unconditional love as being actually unconditional, even in the ways we discipline them (remembering that to discipline means to teach).

We know from the research that when the child feels emotionally safe without shaming, they're more likely to thrive.

Three ways to break the cycle

How to parent from a place of peace:

  1. Forgive ourselves for our past mistakes. Shaming ourselves isn't any better than shaming kids. Exhale and release.

  2. Be gentle with ourselves while we're learning. Conscious parenting takes practice.

  3. Repair. It's never too late to apologize and make things right.

Celebrate your wins

When we catch ourselves doing things "right" and celebrate, we strengthen our neural connections that make shame-free parenting easier next time.


A Chicago-area native, Sarah R. Moore is the author of Peaceful Discipline: Story Teaching, Brain Science & Better Behavior and founder of Dandelion Seeds Positive Parenting. Follow her on Instagram,Facebook,YouTube,TikTok &Twitter.


Commenting has been turned off.

Trending Now Locally

Featured Partners

Shop, Dine and Support Local