One of the most common feature requests or changes we have heard since ChoreMonster started, and that we continue to hear, is one that we will not change. I know, that sounds a little stubborn, if there are enough people asking for a feature change, we should listen and maybe make an adjustment, right?
The request sounds simple enough, and can usually be boiled down to the following:
“If my child does something wrong, how can I take their ChoreMonster points away?”
In the past, I’ve written about Using ChoreMonster As A Bribe and When Chores Are The Law. Both of those posts touch on a theme that I’m going to tackle today as well. The importance of positive reinforcement. That is a big part of what ChoreMonster is about.
We want your home to function better as a result of ChoreMonster. We want tensions over household chores minimized and happiness maximized. None of us pretend that discipline isn’t a part of every home as well, but one of the reasons you won’t see the option to negate ChoreMonster points is because it really wasn’t intended to be part of the discipline in homes.
On one hand, it’s simple. Don’t take stuff away from your kids they already earned.
I know some would fire back at this and state that as adults we have things taken that we’ve earned all the time (taxes, fines and tickets, etc.) That’s true, but I don’t think it applies to your kids and ChoreMonster.
If you want to ground your child for bad behavior, or impose any other discipline that you think is appropriate, go for it. It’s your right and responsibility as a parent to use your best judgement, just don’t drag ChoreMonster and what has been set up to represent positive reinforcement into the mix.
Because remember, at some point you approved that chore that your child completed and gave them the points. If you did so negligently without checking if the chore was done right, that’s on you. If you did so on accident, it’s also on you. If you just want to take away points because Junior is being a pain in the butt, find another place to do it.
I say these things not to draw a line in the sand but rather to let you know, or remind you, why you started using ChoreMonster to begin with. Why was it? I doubt it was so you could have another way to discipline your kids, there are enough of those options already available.
Enough of the tough talk, but I wanted to take some time to address this issue and hope you. As ChoreMonster users, understand where we are coming from on this issue.