3 weeks ago

The teenage years can be a challenge and parents often struggle with appropriate punishments that truly teach a lesson. However, one dad of a 16-year-old daughter decided on a punishment that fit the offense. After she made fun of a classmate who’d lost her hair due to cancer treatments, the teen’s father decided she would have to shave her head.

Posting on an online forum, Dad says he gave his daughter a choice between punishments and she chose going bald over losing all her electronics and not getting any new ones from Dad — ever, he says.

“I gave my daughter two options,” Dad explained. “I will throw away every single piece of electronics she owns and never buy her another again (this was just to coerce her into choosing option 2); She will go to the hairdresser and get a cue ball haircut. As in completely shaved head, as bald as the hairdresser can do.”

And there won’t be any reprieve he added, “No wig. She has to go to school like that until it grows back.”

What led up to the ultimate punishment?

“Apparently there is some pre-existing bad blood between the two of them, but I don’t think that even begins to excuse her behavior,” Dad wrote, adding some context to what happened. “Not how I’ve raised my daughter to treat people and it truly disgusted me to hear how she acted.”

Some might think the punishment goes a bit too far, but it’s hair and it will grow back. It’s also neither physical nor verbal or emotional abuse which can be so damaging.

Most of all, it’s a punishment that fits the transgression. His daughter will hopefully learn about how uncomfortable, depressing, and annoying it is to be stared at for being bald…or different in general. As someone who is a double amputee (left arm, right leg) and gets around in a wheelchair, I often wish that the teens and adults who stare at me — and are old enough to know better — could experience for a week the discomfort of being stared at. Empathy is stronger than sympathy, after all.

As the 16-year-old’s dad wrote, “I came up with the punishment because I thought my daughter had an extreme lack of empathy for the girl she bullied.”

Indeed. And she will absolutely have some after walking around nearly bald for months.

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