As parents, my wife and I struggle to understand what it is that motivates our children to rebel against us, and the law. There are several local and nationwide programs and support groups parents can turn to for issues with juvenile delinquency such as Somos Familia. Parents try to relate to the issues their children encounter and their struggle with everyday life, and it is not easy but there is help for children and parents with issues in juvenile delinquency.
Parents always seem to blame the problems their children face on someone else such as the schools or even the juvenile justice system and we were no exception. However, as parents we know our kids better than anyone else. Children have to make decisions throughout their childhood that will affect them either negatively or positively, with hope for the latter. What children do not understand is that they are not alone in dealing with the consequences for the poor decisions they make. Dr. Wright and Dr. James explain that, responses have consequences. It is more important to know the effect of the consequences on the response than to know the original motivation for the act. A child "operates" on his environment. A child decides to engage in "crossing the street behavior." If this behavior is followed by a "large hand on a small behind," the behavior has been punished, and the likelihood of reoccurrence has been weakened. If "crossing the street behavior" is followed by an ice cream cone, the possibility of this operation being repeated is greatly strengthened. Life is full of trial and error random responses and the consequences of these acts influence whether or not the acts will be repeated. Dr. Wright and James state that, "When an individual has acquired a functional connection between an environmental stimulus and a response on his or her part, learning has taken place. Learning continues from birth to death." (Wright and James 26-28).