Being a parent is not an easy job. I have three children, and I still have not mastered the art of raising them properly. With our first child, Jesse, we did anything and everything we could to ensure that he was coddled and well-cared for. He had the best of the best, and our wallets took a hit. We thought that he had to have every gadget and gizmo out there. Of course, we were very young and had no clue about raising babies. I was only 20, and I had no clue what parents were all about.
Letting Them Stand on Their Own
One of the biggest mistakes that new parents make is rushing to the child every time they whimper. When he cried, we held him, which is a huge mistake. By the time I got to my second child, Madelyn, she pretty much could cry for about 5 five minutes before I would go to her. And, by the time the third one rolled around, Noah, well, he just kind of cried himself to sleep nightly.
Teaching children that they need to have ways to cope starts in the cradle. Parents who continuously rush to their child’s aid will never teach them anything in life, no matter how hard they try. Even though I am only 30 years old, I still have friends whose parents cater to their every whim. It really is a bad pattern to break.
They Don’t Need Stuff
I mentioned before that Jesse had all he could ever want. Now, when he came home from the hospital, his crib was a name brand that cost over $1,000. Do you honestly think that child slept any better in that crib than one from a discount store? The thing is that I tried to show my affection by purchasing things. Parents always get caught up in the latest toys, clothes, and technological gadgets. Again, this is another pattern that doesn’t seem to stop anywhere in life. Sometimes, less is more when it comes to kids.
With my first and second child, I was all snuggles and hugs. However, by the time my third one came around, I had to go back to work to pay for all the diapers and such. I didn’t get as much time with Noah as the other two. I regretted that because I don’t feel he and I are as close as I would like. I don’t have as many hours with him, and I have learned he doesn’t need so much stuff. What many parents don’t make a habit of is telling their children how much they love them. Hugs and kisses as well as “I love you” should be said and done every day. You can’t buy your child’s affections.
Thinking Bad Behavior is Cute
Wow, this topic really hits close to home. I already told you that I felt like Noah didn’t get much of my time. So to make up for my feelings of failure, I let him get by with way more than the others. Keep in mind, this is also common by the third or subsequent child too. Noah would say a dirty word every now and again. We would laugh at his little slip of the tongue. However, by the time he went to kindergarten, his dirty words landed me, and him, in the principal’s office. He also had a habit of yelling “shut up.” He had a small lisp, and it was so funny to hear him say the “s” sound. Once again, my husband and I laughed and thought it was funny. However, his teachers don’t take too kindly to being told such a thing.
Learning To Relax
What they say is true, kids don’t come with instruction manuals. Parents have to wing it. However, remembering that we are trying to mold them into upstanding citizens should always be in the back of our mind. We teach them bad habits from the cradle that can follow them through life. Most of the time, we overcompensate for our shortcomings and our childhoods, and we give them complexes and problems they don’t need. As a parent, I can honestly tell you, we need to relax. My third child, the one who didn’t get as much, is much more well-rounded, which only proves my theory. My first one, he still thinks the world should be handed to him. I guess when we get it right, they will be raised and gone.