PARENTING MYTHS

Giving Children what they want will make them happy

In the present era, one commonly observes parents desperately trying to ensure that their children get what (in fact whatever!) they want. They find it difficult to say ‘No’ ,try to avoid anything that might cause the child distress ,including discipline.

The irony of the situation is that this constant indulgence is likely to ensure long term unhappiness rather than happiness for the children.

What we need to consider is that ‘wants’ are unending,and the child has to learn to operate in the large world.

When these children step out into the world, they are in for a rude shock. They find that they cannot always get what they want something that they had started considering their fundamental right! They learn, in fact, that people do not like them because they are rude and selfish. As parents, we need to emphasize the children’s long-term good rather than short-term happiness. The old fashioned methods of parenting had distinct advantages, because children were brought-up as a  part of the family, kin group and society instead of making them the fulcrum of all activities and making them feel as if they were the center of the universe. Children were corrected without hesitation, and they still felt loved while viewing the parents and other elders in the family with a healthy awe. e need to reach children that one does not always get what one wants!This lesson needs to begin at home. Children need to be taught to accept a ‘No’; to accept an instruction they don’t like. Watching their parents handle similar situations cheerfully could help!

 

How I treat my spouse and other family members doesn’t matter as long as I am loving towards my child

In the present times, it is not an uncommon sight to observe a parent being highly indulgent and affectionate towards the child, and having no qualms about mishehaving with the spouse, the grandparents , or others in the family.

One forgets the saying: ”life is a boomerang- what you give comes back to you”. Larger issues notwithstanding , the fact is that this doesn’t do much good to the child. Children learn a lot by observing – regardless of whether the same is intended or not! Convicts and discord are best avoided . Rather, one should focus on being a good role-model for the child.

 

You should always explain the reason to the child

Giving explanations and elaborating on the rationale is deemed to help children understand ‘ why’ they have been asked to do something. However , the flip side is that the children grow up expecting justifications and explanations from their parents for every request and instruction! Imagine having to provide a reason to the child (and ensure its acceptability to the child!) for each and everything you want the child to do; from childhood through adolescence! Life may become a constant battle of wits. Further, at times it may be vital that the child follow the instantaneously ( say, when crossing the road ),with the parent being assured of the same.

 

You should be a friend to your Child

This statement should not be implemented in toto! While you would do well to always be available to your child, and inspire enough confidence that your child is able to share his/her wishes, dreams and worries with you, you need to basically remain a parent! Thus, you need to ensure that the child does the right thing; placing limits and drawing boundaries, and making clear that everything is not negotiable.A parent needs to have a certain degree of authority and provide clear responsibility of parents to raise decent, well- adjusted members of society, and fulfillment of this responsibility is not possible without setting limits. Friendships are based on casualness and equality. Yet, for parenting to be affective, children need to respect parental authority.

 

Parents should always praise children to motivate them to behave well

do not take children to be fools! They are able to make out when the praise is genuine and well- earned, and when it is not! Praise works best when it is well-deserved . Often a simple smile or look of approval, or a pat on the shoulder is enough to make the child glow. experts opine that both praise and criticism have a greater impact when they are used sparingly and in well-deserved instances.

 

 

 

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