To say that trying to get kids to do the right thing by scaring them is “common place” is like saying Christmas is a holiday. In fact, it’s EVERYWHERE.
We try to scare kids about the dangers of drugs, about the dangers of gangs, about what will happen if htey don’t get an education, about what could happen if they talk to strangers, about drinking, about driving, about drinking and driving … you’d almost think we enjoy scaring kids, we do it so much.
But it’s effective, right?
At The New Existentialists, Saybrook psychology student Makenna Berry has gone over some of the evidence — and it turns out that “scared straight” style interventions do little to no short-term good and negative long term impacts.
Fortunately, there are better approaches we can take to help children navigate a world full of pitfalls.