So this is one of my biggest parenting pet peeves. Why are so many parents out there more concerned with being their childs best friend instead of their actual parent?! You can definitely be both, but you cannot JUST be their best friend. Are these parents afraid of their children? Are they afraid of conflict? Or the almighty temper tantrum? Or is it just what’s easier?
I get it. If there’s a way to avoid the overly dramatic temper tantrum, I’m sure we’d all jump on that bandwagon. I know I would if it didn’t come with a pretty hefty price to pay…aka a pretty out of control child. Some parents would rather give their child whatever they want, whenever they want it, to avoid being the bad guy & having to deal with the screaming and crying, and arguing & fighting. It’s easier to not punish your kid. But here’s what happens when a parent does that.
Children are like sponges, they absorb everything they see & hear almost immediately. And their memories are freaking amazing. My 3 ½ year old reminds me of things I said months ago on a daily basis. But when a parent is constantly giving into their kids, allowing them to get away with murder, they are very quickly going to adapt to that lifestyle & expect it all the time. So in no time at all, you’ve got a very demanding, ill-mannered, & downright rude kid on your hands. And it won’t be just their parents they’re like this for. It’ll eventually become the siblings, the grandparents, the teachers, etc that have to put up with their uncontrolled ways. And then it’s a problem for everyone. It’s a problem for everyone BUT the parents because they are the ones that let it get to this point.
But here’s the part that really drives me nuts…somehow in all this “just do whatever you want” attitude, the people around them are thinking Mom & Dad have their hands full & SOMEHOW take pity on them. So then it becomes “Aww poor So & So. They really have their hands full with that one. Poor things deserve a break.” A break? A break from what? They’ve clearly been on a break This. Whole. Time! But the parents that actually take the time & effort (and it takes A LOT of both) to make sure their kids are behaved, well mannered & polite get no credit what so ever because everyone just thinks we have it easy. We may have it easy now, but it wasn’t smooth sailing to get here.
For me personally, I make absolute sure both my children are well behaved, have manners & know right from wrong. Don’t get me wrong, my kids have had their fair share of melt downs & yes, I’ve given in a few times…but they both know there will be consequences. And a fun filled lecture from me as well. But my kids’ first words, aside from “Dada” (it’s always Dada first, right?) were please & thank you. They know to say please when they ask for something, to say thank you once they’ve gotten something & they know better than to act up in a store, restaurant or someone’s house. They’re kids, so of course they have their slip ups, but I make certain to correct it right away. I will punish them or send them to their room…and when I send them to their room, they do not get to bring an IPad, or video games with them. I have no problem taking away their toys, or turning off their cartoons. We’ve left stores & restaurants abruptly because the girls were misbehaving. Sure, the crying breaks my heart, but in the long run, it’ll so be worth it.
Children are a reflection of their parents. They know what you teach them. They follow your lead. If we don’t teach them to respect us as their parents, how can we expect them to have respect for anyone else? No one wants to play with the “mean kid” on the playground. You don’t want your kid known as the “mean one” right? Parents need to take back their role of disciplinarian so that their kids can grow up to be responsible, respectful adults.
Don’t be afraid to say no, they won’t bite…ok maybe some will, both my kids went through a horrible biting phase, but you catch my drift. Let them throw a fit because in 10 minutes they won’t even remember what they’re mad about.
And with that said, I have to end this rant because my oldest is not sharing her toys with her baby sister…it’s a work in progress, people. A work in progress!!
(They were discussing this on the radio this morning & that’s how I got the blog idea. This blog is not intended for any specific person)