Contrary to popular belief, parenting is not about making your child’s life easier. Most parents know what their children are capable of, but try to manage every single aspect just so that their children don’t take too much trouble.
While it is a strong protective parenting instinct to fix every problem in your child’s life, you are effectively setting them up for failure and unhappiness when they will face the real world on their own.
Let’s take a look at some of the common mistakes parents make.
I’m your best friend
This is perhaps the most common misconception of millennial parents. Friendship means there is an equal level of authority between both parties. What distinguishes it from parenting is that only one person is in charge. While it is important to have a healthy, friendly relationship with your child, there are many situations where you clearly have to exert authority; like routine, bedtime, hygiene, school work etc. If you try to be a friend, you will not get desired results and the child will take advantage of your leniency.
Never say NO policy
Millennial parents think they need the stamp of approval of their children to make them good parents. The worse scenario in the household is when their precious little one is upset, so they leave no stone un-turned to make sure their child is happy and satisfied with everything. Saying ‘NO’ to the child is never an option because they feel their kids would hate them. As a result, the parents end up spoiling the kids into believing that he or she is entitled to whatever they want.
Making our children happy most of the time is a good feeling or thought for a parent to entertain. However happiness is mostly self-driven. If parents go out of the way to entertain their children and wipe off all their frowns with fun, laughter and games, children will never learn to combat difficult situations on their own. There are things in life that bring joy and happiness and we should guide kids to optimize their lives for those things. And when sad situations come, they should be empowered to face them as well.
Quick Fix Solutions
This is another common trend. If the child comes home after a bad day, you take him or her out for an extra big ice cream sundae to wash off the disappointment. While it is a good gesture to give children some time out from their troubles, it should not be a constant scenario. What they need from the parent is a patient ear to sound off their problems and the practical counsel to face the problem. Letting children deal with disappointments on their own is the only way to train them to deal with disappointing events that are sure to come their way as adults.
Most mothers end up picking after their children, making their beds, clearing up their plates, folding their laundry and so on. By the age of 10, a child is capable enough to do all the things mentioned above and then some more. As parents, we all love our children and make sure to give our children the best. However our kids need to know, nothing in this universe is going to be provided for free and If they want to carve their niche, they need to be more self-dependent in times ahead.