Parenthood - A Learning Curve
Do as I say not as I do
It is all very well to tell your child they can’t do something, but if they then see you doing the exact thing they have been forbiddon from, they are going to start asking questions. When your child is shooed away from the biscuit tin and then finds you in it a few hours later, they are going to wonder how this works. By following your own rules, your children will have no reason to doubt any of your authority. If you are caught out, fess up, admit you are wrong and make sure you don’t do it again or your kids will start to take you less seriously.
Not saying no
The problem with giving in to everything to avoid conflict is that you end up raising children who are spoiled and selfish. They have no concept of being told they can’t have or do something, so when they reach school and are refused something, they will become very upset and even confused that they are being treated this way. By setting boundaries and saying no when you feel it is appropriate, your child will start to realise that sometimes in life, they have to cope without doing or getting what they want at that moment. It will help them in the long run and help them learn to respect and enjoy privileges and gifts when they are allowed.
Trying to be their friend
The last thing your child needs is for you to try and be their friend first and their parent second. Children and teenagers need an authoritative figure in their lives to keep them on the straight and narrow and one which they feel they can go and seek advice from. They will have many friends through the years and don’t need one more in the form of their mother or father. Your role and the relationship that you have with your child need to be clear from the outset and they need to know that it is very different from any other that they have, especially with their friends.
Having unrealistic expectations
Every parent needs to realise that their child isn’t a perfect person who can do no wrong. Kids will make mistakes, they will fail a test or two and they may not be as good at English as you would like them to be. That’s life and you should nurture and encourage the talents your child does have, rather than focusing on unrealistic goals that they may never reach. It puts a huge amount of pressure on a child and can damage their self esteem to fail at something you told them they were guaranteed to do well at.
Conflicting parenting methods
You need to make sure you are in agreeance with your partner from the word go when it comes to bringing up your kids. If one parent says yes to something and the other says no, this is a recipe for a very confused kid. Both parents need to appear as one and a strong unit when it comes to disciplining and raising kids or your children will start to play up or fail to take you seriously anymore. Have a plan of action in place for any eventualities which may arise and make sure you and your partner are on the same page about everything. Discuss all of this before your baby is even born and you should have no problems.