Five Common Parenting Pitfalls

At one point in their child’s young life, a man and woman threw their hands up in the air and a parenting book with it.  They read every hot “how to raise your child” book on the market, but they still weren’t getting the results they wanted.  So many people were telling them so many things they need to do as parents, but very few told them what not to do.

Human beings have been on this earth for, it’s disputable, but a long time.  Therefore, so have children.  We know for a fact that the written word didn’t exist at the dawn of man.  There were no experts telling us how to raise our child, yet here we are.  In other words, our humanity has been saved by someone figuring it out.  We all do.  Each parent has to figure out just what it is that works for the parents and the child, and we do, but there are those moments in our parenting lives on which we wish we could get a do-over.  With some quick research and the help of some experts (mostly parents), these are five common mistakes we make as parents-

1-      Being your child’s friend- They don’t want a friend, they want a parent.  A parent will love them unconditionally, feed them, care for them.  They’ll find friends in school.

2-      Giving in after saying “N0”- When we say no, we have to mean it.  There is nothing that a child figures out faster than “When I have a fit, I tend to get it.”  We need to bend and be flexible, but breaking will only hurt us and our child in the future.  Be true to your word, even if you’ve changed your mind after promising a treat.

3-      Failing to give responsibilities- a child thrives on making you happy and pleased with him, so make sure to give even the littlest toddler something he can be responsible for.  It gives them a sense of purpose and self-esteem to complete tasks.  Don’t take that away by doing everything for them.  Being too helpful sometimes breeds helplessness.

4-      “Do as I say, not as I do”- Sometimes we parents forget that a child learns so much more by watching.  We forget that a frown on our face while cleaning up spilled milk will be noticed more than a few choice words.  Whistle while you work, show how fun a task can be.  Be the person that you want your child to become and she will follow.

5-      Not spending quality time- Don’t finish a presentation before playing with your child.  You can finish when he goes to bed.  Don’t wait to stop playtime to answer the phone or send a text.  Be there for your child, every moment possible.  You won’t create a dependent baby, rather you will instill in your child your love for him, and confidence that everything will be all right.  Your child will grow up more secure in life the more time you spend with them as a child.

“In spite of the six thousand manuals on child raising in the bookstores, child raising is still a dark continent and no one really knows anything. You just need a lot of love and luck – and, of course, courage.”
Bill Cosby, Fatherhood

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