Parenting is defined as the process of being a ‘parent’. It involves taking care of a child’s overall developmental and psychological needs. With holistic development, a child will eventually and ideally be on the right path to becoming a responsible individual and citizen.
Parenting cannot be taught, it comes naturally and involves different kinds of parental behaviors or styles which directly impact the growth and personality of a child.
Parenting styles have evolved through decades. These days what is being noticed and becoming a matter of concern is that parents practice a lot of direct supervision and control, which at the end of the day is not good for a child’s individual development.
Parenting Styles that affect a child’s ability to be independent
These parenting styles are called ‘Attachment’ and ‘Helicopter’ parenting, where parents are always there for a child.
The Attachment Parenting Style
He gets so attached to them, and their decisions. Hence, when he grows up, he is unable to make up his own mind and decisions, and fails to ne self-reliant or exist, independently.
As soon as such children come across adverse situation, they fall apart. They are unable to handle normal pressure and become fragile and vulnerable.
“The end result is rise cases of depression and suicides.”
The Helicopter Parenting Style
Parents these days are overprotective and think that if their kids go out of sight, something bad will happen to them. Reality is, we cannot be there with them at all times. When they grow up they have to move out and face the world and all kinds of adverse and difficult situations and people on their own. They will have to handle their relations with peers, seniors, teachers and friends, and the public, in general.
So parents need to be there for our children, but please avoid hovering over them all the time like a helicopter. They also need their individual space.
Kids also need to make mistakes and even fail so that they can learn to recover and become strong.
What is happening these days is alarming. When they face the real world and something goes wrong, they are unable to handle the situation and fail to cope up with difficult situations.
How to parent a child?
An important aspect of parenting is teaching our kids the value of hard work. This can be done by assigning them with day to day household tasks and this can be started at an early age as well.
We need to make them learn the art of balancing study and play time. After all, all work and no play doesn’t work so it has to be balanced. And yes my dear parents, it also can not be all play and no work.
And a very important point, where most of us go wrong is forcing our expectations on them, on what they want to become in life. They need to evolve and explore their interest areas. We should definitely make them aware of various choices and their pros and cons. Of course, these days kids are well aware and have a lot of exposure. Here we also need to ensure that we are more of friends to them and share that bond with our kids, where they feel free to discuss any sort of problem they are facing and are able to confide in us without any hesitation.
So what we understand now is parenting not only involves fulfilling practical needs of our child, but also his or her emotional and physiological needs. And there is nothing like being perfect parents. We have to be real and let them be what they are, let them learn from their mistakes and nurture them with right beliefs and values.
The preparation of becoming a parent begins from the day your child is conceived. This day gives birth to a lifelong commitment to be the guardian angel of the new life. There are no specific dos and don’ts of parenting, just trust your instincts. Here are some parenting basics that you can keep in mind.
1. Own the responsibility of bringing up your child.
Being a parent helps in nurturing the relationship between you both. Spending quality time with children, monitoring what they do, and knowing what their preferences are, roots a healthy kinship. However, there is a catch here. Don’t get too carried away in governing all actions of your child. A perfect balance is needed to give the child enough space to grow as an independent individual with a sense of self-direction.
Set limits that are good for the overall development of the child. Communicate openly and clearly, but make sure that you listen to the child’s point of view as well. Children do try to push for liberty, which as parents we may equate as being rebellious or disobedient. However, many child psychologists say that this is a perfectly normal behavior. Instead of trying to take control in such situations, giving choices to the child helps to develop a sense of ownership of the action undertaken and to fester the feeling of good bonhomie.
Good parents explain their actions to their child and treat them respectfully. Speak to your child politely and pay attention to what he/she has to say. Children often treat others the way they are treated by their parents.
2. Observe your child.
Don’t ignore any visual cues that might give away if something is bothering your child. See if the child is behaving irritably or is unusually quiet. Have plenty of conversations with your child to make them comfortable in your company and give them the sense of trust that they can approach you when they need to share.
Being involved in your child’s life means keeping pace with the child’s age and development. This lets you adapt your parenting to match the emotional and psychological needs of the child.
3. Understand the temperament of your child.
All children are different and so are their parents. Do not compare them with other children of their age or adopt specific parenting techniques that might have worked for another parents. Love your child unconditionally and praise good behavior. When we talk about a child’s actions, it is easier to deal with and doesn’t instills harmful self-image issues. This helps develop their individual traits and not force them to become a personality they really are not. Encourage your children and be vocal about your appreciation of their good deeds to boost their self-confidence.
4. Raise your child to be human.
Parents should lead their children by example to foster in them self-discipline, cheer, forgiveness, honesty, and cooperation. Begin your actions with the end in mind and avoid the ‘old-school’ parenting of harsh disciplining by hitting or spanking, which can cause the child to be aggressive. There are times when we inadvertently pass on to our kids the pressures of exceling in all that they do. So, it’s important to keep a check on your anxieties too.
5. Prepare your child for success.
When we talk about success, it is not just in terms of academics, but also in social spheres. To help your child in preparing for a successful community life,
- Develop sensitivity towards the people they interact with. Make them compassionate and appreciate efforts of even their helpers in daily routine.
- Teach your child the nuances essential for survival when they will eventually stand on their own feet.
- Expose them to the realities of life, where they know all their wishes won’t be fulfilled always. Life is complete when it has its own share of lows that will make them appreciate the highs.