Nobody wants things to break, but it happens that things fall and break. Or something is treated incorrectly and breaks. Children are very prone to breaking things. They don't know how to handle little delicate things and are often clumsy.
When a child climbs on a chair, a parent can either say "Get down, the chair will break" or "Get down, you are going to hurt yourself". When a parent puts the object first, does that mean they care more about their furniture than the child? Or maybe the parent has faith in the child that they won't hurt themselves so then they only have to be concerned about the furniture which cannot protect itself and therefore needs the parent protecting it.
But then when a child falls on the floor, or a child's finger gets stuck in the door, some parents will tell the child to hit the floor or the door. This supposedly helps because the child is getting out its frustration on the thing that caused him to get hurt. The child will say "Bad door" and it makes them feel better. Though the door has no feelings to answer back, so they automatically win.
Now, what happens when a child has something important to them, a new toy and then it breaks. The parent can either scream at the child for breaking the toy that they just bought for x amount of dollars. In that case the child will feel guilty and get more upset and angry thinking that its not their fault. This takes away from the actual sadness of the child at the loss of their new toy. Or the parent can say "oy vey" and then the child feels the sadness and gets hysterical and wants a new toy right away.
Then today, I saw a different approach that I've never seen before. A child was oustide with a porcelain doll, which isn't made of plastic and therefore can break easily. So the child was holding the doll and coming out of a car and then "crash" the doll's foot broke and shattered to pieces. The mother didn't get upset at the child, neither did she make a big deal out of it. Instead she said "Mazel Tov!".
I thought this was such a good way to deal with it. The child didn't start crying. They just picked up the doll from outside and moved on, went inside the house, and that was the end of that. I'm sure the child felt a little regret that her doll was now broken, but there were no outbursts and the child was able to think rationally and the mother probably took care of the rest of it. Either to buy a new one, or to explain that she has other dolls, or that its not completely broken and so on.
Parshas Netzavim–Vayeilech - *Something to say* *Gather together the people – the men, the women, and the small children (31:12).* In this parshah we learn about the commandment of ...
6 years ago