It is becoming increasingly difficult to be a parent in today’s society. The challenges that our parents faced are multiplied today, because the world is changing at a faster pace than ever before. Communication has become faster, superficial, and that means our children are influenced today by a lot of things that were just not there a couple of decades ago. All of this factors come together to create a more complex environment and it is becoming increasingly difficult to know what is the correct way of raising your child.
The first question that you have to ask yourself when you start to tackle this problem is what type of child you want to have. And before you can do that, you have to think rationally about what type of parent you are, and more importantly, about what type of parent you can be. Because yes, we all think we are special, we all think we can face any problem head on and solve it, but unfortunately, each and every one of us is only a human being, thus plagued with his or her own insecurities and idiosyncrasies.
Before thinking about what type of child we want to have, think about what type of child we can handle. It may seem a nice and good idea to give your child absolute freedom, but can you handle that? Can you handle the consequences of a certain type of parenting? Because if you can’t, than it is more than obvious that that certain type of parenting is not for you. Every style has advantages and disadvantages, every style can lead to good or bad things, and you have to figure if you can accept those different possible outcomes before you take the first step on that certain path.
There are a lot of types of parents out there, but for the purpose of this article we will analyze them based on the freedom they give their children and nothing more. So, you have two options. The first one is to give your child information and let him decide for himself and then respect his decisions, even if they come against your own beliefs. The second one is to try to instill those beliefs in your child and make him behave in a certain way, the way you figure gives him the best chances of succeeding in life.
Now, don’t get me wrong, you will influence your child even if you try not to, because that is the way the human mind works. Our children will inevitably pick stuff up from us, good or bad habits alike. We can’t stop that, but we can decide if the process is done in the subconscious mind or if we assume it and do it on purpose. Either way, before thinking about teaching your child something, always remember that you are already teaching him things every single day through your actions and words spoken.
If you do not want your child to swear, do not swear in front of him. And that goes for any bad habit that you want to keep him away from. You can’t be a hypocrite when raising children, because they pick up on that very fast. If you are doing something that is not good for you and the child sees it, telling him to not do it while you are still doing it is wrong, because it is an absurd rule that he will most definitely not follow. So be careful what you do when you are around your children and always accept that they will want to mimic you in almost everything that you do. You are responsible for them, so act responsible when you are around them.
And in conclusion, think about what type of person you are, think about what you can accept and what you can’t. I know, you want your child to be completely free, everybody is telling you that is the way, but if you realize that you will not be able to accept that freedom, it is better to impose structure early on. Do not raise your child to be independent if you will later try to squash that independence. Pick one type of parenting and go with it, because you will have to stick with it for the rest of your life. So before you do pick, try to realize what you really want from your children and from yourself. You would be surprised how many of us have no clue about those things…