Parents often ask me what the Raise Responsibility System is all about. While this website has much information about the system, here are a few key points to help explain it:
- As the name states, the Raise Responsibility System aims at promoting responsibility. This is in contrast to approaches that aim at fostering obedience. When parents aim toward obedience with young people today, they often get resistance, resentment, and even rebellion. The result is stress for both parent and child. As children grow, the more we try to force obedience the more they resist. However, when responsibility is promoted, obedience becomes a natural by-product.
- The Raise Responsibility System is proactive rather than reactive. Instead of waiting until an undesirable behavior occurs and then reacting to it, this approach starts by having young people learn four words referred to as the Hierarchy of Social Development. In this way, they continually have something specific (the four words and their meanings) as their base.
- The Raise Responsibility System shows you how to handle disruptive and irresponsible behavior simply and easily. Use the system and you will find your children developing self-discipline, developing respect for self and others, and becoming more responsible. As you implement the system, you will quickly see how stress and adversarial relationships are significantly reduced. Young people really want to behave appropriately, and the system induces them to do so.
Remember, reacting to irresponsible behavior by aiming at obedience is a primary cause of stress in parent-child relationships—whether we are telling them to do something, using threats and punishments, or attempting to manipulate their behavior with rewards. But with the Raise Responsibility System, you can influence your children to make better choices because they WANT to. And when challenges do occur, you have an approach of placing the responsibility for self-correction on the youngster. I urge all parents and teachers to give it a try.