As parents, we all like to believe that we are doing our best for our children. These days, parenting has become serious business. We read up extensively, take advice from all possible sources and Google everything possible for the better upbringing of our kids. However, sometimes, unknowingly, we end up doing certain things that may cause more harm than good in the long run. Here is a list of things that you could avoid doing, no matter how good your intentions may be.
Every child has their own individuality. Respect that. It is important for you to appreciate the things he is good at and make your peace with his shortcomings. Do not compare his capabilities or the lack of them, either in his presence or otherwise. In your mind, you might be doing it to motivate him to do better, but it usually works in a negative manner.
2. Being Pushy
If your daughter wants to attend dance classes and not the violin classes you have planned out for her, so be it. Do not force her to do something towards which she doesn’t have an aptitude. It is wrong to live our dreams through our kids. Even if there is one activity that they enjoy, let them pursue it with all their heart, instead of dabbling in multiple activities that they have no interest in. One child may be able to pack four activities into their day apart from studies and another may not. Let your child take up whatever she is comfortable with. Remember, extra-curricular activities are meant to reduce stress, not to add to it.
3. Being Overprotective
Childhood is filled with some unpleasant things too. Grazed knees, runny noses and stomach aches are all part of growing up. It is only when they fall that they learn to pick themselves up and walk again. Let them make their own mistakes and learn from them. Cosseting them beyond reason will only inhibit their survival skills and make them unduly dependent.
4. Being Over Critical
Dr. Benjamin Spock, the global authority on child rearing, says that it is more effective to let your child, especially a teen, know that you are concerned about something before you just start criticizing and laying down rules. For example, if you don’t approve of your daughter’s new friend, you could probably say, “You don’t seem to be yourself ever since you met this friend” instead of “I forbid you to see this friend again.”
5. Being Over Indulgent
In today’s age of inflation and a constantly increasing cost of living, both parents are invariably forced to have full-time jobs, out of the home. Juggling work stress and pressure along with family responsibilities are no small feat. Many parents feel that they are not doing enough for their children, and try to compensate by satisfying their material demands. This, however, can never be a good thing in the long run. Presents can never compensate for presence on one hand while on the other they give rise to unreasonable expectations on the part of kids.
These may seem like small issues, but they do make a lot of difference in the character of your kids as they grow. Children very often model their behavior on those that they spend maximum time with. Try and make every moment you spend with them count. They are small but once—make their childhood memorable so they can treasure it for a lifetime!