How Can I Be a Better Parent
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I have often asked myself – how can I be a better parent, as being a good parent is easier said than done! We often take for granted that parenting comes naturally and there’s no need to learn how to be a better parent.
It sure does come naturally. We all do have our own parenting instincts, whether we are married, bachelors, biological parents, or even foster parents. However, the question is about the skills, the knowledge, and the use of methods and techniques to be a better parent.
In today’s post, I will be sharing the information about the various ways to be a good parent hoping that you can help any curious parent that comes to you with the question asking – How can I be a better parent?
“There is no such thing as a perfect parent so just be a real one.” ~ Sue Atkins.
I can understand a few readers who may not have children, and if you’re one of them then I’m sure this post will take you down the memory lane. You will be able to relive and relate how your parents went about the task of parenting, and the ways they adopted to be a better parent when they had you as a child in their lives!
So, let’s embark on this journey (because it’s a long post!!) of parenthood for those who are parents. And for those who are not married it sure is going to be a learning experience for you.
What does it mean to be a Better Parent?
As parents, we are always looking around for ways to get better as we want the best for our children.
Better parenting is all about striving to be become responsible parents and make improvements with the way you deal with your children. It’s not about being perfect, rather it’s about being a real parent, in the true sense.
It isn’t about being better than some other parent either, instead, being a better parent means to develop the parenting skills and grow as a parent yourself.
If you have come up with a question like – How can I be a better parent; you clearly demonstrate that you’ve the interest, aptitude, and the right attitude to be a better parent, now all you require is trying out some of the simplest of things.
For better parenting, try spending more quality time with your kids, spreading more joy, showing more patience, having fewer arguments in the house, and learn to appreciate, love, and understand your kids.
“To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today.” ~ Anonymous
I somehow never managed to ask my mother how she came up with ideas to be a responsible parent. But I learned her ways of parenting from what I experienced as a child, and now that I am a parent myself, being a better parent is what I am trying to be with my kids.
Ways to be a Better Parent
Preparing for parenthood is the most beautiful experience and moment in one’s life. Better parenting is all about watching your kids grow into well groomed adults and human beings.
Starting right from childhood, to getting them into school and then college, brings you many cherished and happy moments. But yes, better parenting is all about facing the difficulties also – that accompany these happy moments.
So, for those of you who wonder how to be a better parent; here are a few tired and tested ways to be a good parent:
1- Recognize your children
Being a good parent is all about recognizing and knowing your children, as you are the foremost person to know everything about them. However, you need to take the time to earn the title of knowing your children.
“Be supportive…You want to be a part of your kids’ lives.” ~ Apolo Anton Ohno
How to be a better parent is all about paying attention to everything that your children does or needs, including their interests, their behavior patterns, their likes- dislikes, and the smallest of things without them having to tell you.
Cherished memories: I remember the time when I was a child, my parents would just have to look into my eyes and they would know what I wanted. At times words are not needed, as the eyes say everything. Similarly, I can make out what my kids want, without them really having to say anything to me.
2-Love your children unconditionally
One of the most important ways to be a better parent is to love your children unconditionally by expressing your love and affection, and loving them for who they are and not what you want or expect them to be.
You can boost the confidence of your children by simple ways like showing a little encouragement, giving them a gentle hug, and appreciating them, either with a smile, nod, or just about anything that makes them feel loved!
“Children need love, especially when they “do not deserve” it.” ~ Harold Hulbert
Tell them how much you love them, every single day if you want to be a better parent, as they feel secure and loved this ways. Not to miss the much needed hugs and kisses that make a world of a difference to them.
Remember, they are still children and need to see signs of affection that could even be a simple pat on the back or a squeeze on the hand to show that you care. It has been scientifically proved that physical affection from those you trust reduces stress and elevates the mood.
“Parents need to fill a child’s bucket of self-esteem so high that the rest of the world can’t poke enough holes to drain it dry.” ~ Alvin Price
Being children they might make mistakes or do things you don’t like. In such cases, even though you are angry and upset, let them know you are disappointed and you dislike their action, but show that you still love them just as much.
Cherished memories: As far as I remember, I have always been kissed, hugged, pampered, and simply loved from the day I was born, right up till now. I can never forget those memories of me in my parent’s arms, nor can I forget their love for me even when I made so many mistakes in my life. Similarly, I try to love my kids for what they are and alongside I keep trying to make them better.
3- Appreciate and praise your children
If you are wondering about how to be a better parent, you need to remember that better parenting also includes learning to appreciate and praise your child for their smallest of efforts.
Being a good parent is also about learning to compliment your children when they do something good, or appreciating their efforts. They feel happy that their work is appreciated and this builds up their self-esteem and self-confidence, motivating and inspiring them to keep getting better.
“Praise the young and they will blossom.” ~ Irish Proverb
Better parenting is also about avoiding comparing your children to others, especially siblings, cousins, or friends. Remember, every child is unique and special and may have some positives and negatives.
Learn to celebrate their differences and teach them it’s alright to be different. Being a better parent includes encouraging them to pursue their dreams and appreciating them for taking decisions in their life.
“If you want your children to improve, let them overhear the nice things you say about them to others.” ~ Haim Ginott
How to be a better parent includes knowing that your child is not your extension, instead, your child is a separate individual under your care, so don’t expect the world out of them!
Instead, find simple ways to be happy by simply being with your children, loving and appreciating them in their journey towards life.
Cherished memories: Going down memory lane, I remember the time I scored an average grade in my class, yet my parents made me feel that I had topped and done extremely well. So much so, we went out to celebrate! Similarly, I try and boost the morale of my kids by appreciating their small deeds, actions, gestures, and efforts.
4- Never criticize your children
One of the important aspects about how to be a better parent is to avoid criticizing your children, and instead try learning to focus on their behavior.
The duty of being a good parent is to check your children when they go wrong, though there is a way of going about it. Be a better parent by avoiding humiliating them publicly, instead taking them aside and scolding them in private.
“Stop trying to perfect your child, but keep trying to perfect your relationship with him.” ~ Dr. Henker
If your child acts in an unacceptable manner, then instead of shouting or criticizing, as a parent be serious, stern, assertive, and tell him or her that such behavior is unacceptable and suggest alternatives or ways to get better. They may hate you that moment, but know within you meant well.
“If you have never been hated by your child you have never been a parent.” ~ Bette Davis
Cherished memories: I still don’t recollect a moment in time when my parents ever criticized or humiliated me. Yes, they did scold me when I was wrong but always explained how to get better. Similarly, I haven’t criticized my kids till date, though I keep working at improving their behavior.
5- Communicate with your children
Communication is the key if you are wondering about how to be a better parent, as it is all about talking and listening to your children.
One of the ways to be a better parent is simply to listen to your children, and hear all that they have to say. You need to involve yourself in their life by expressing an interest in what they say.
“Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.” ~ Robert Fulghum
Remember that poor communication leads to relationship problems of any kind, but if your children know you are interested in their life, they will come to you with their problems as they know they will be heard.
Part of being a good parent is to know what all is going on in your children’s lives by asking them about things they did at school, college, or at their work place.
Or simple interactions like if they need your help or if they are troubled and would like to discuss about the things.
“Affirming words from moms and dads are like light switches. Speak a word of affirmation at the right moment in a child’s life and it’s like lighting up a whole roomful of possibilities.” ~ Gary Smalley
Cherished memories: I distinctly remember the beautiful communication channel I had with my parents when I was young, which made me learn to be more expressive and responsive. Even though I am married and away from them, their calls and art of listening still remains clear in my memory. My parents heard everything and were always there in my time of need. Similarly, we ensure there is a talking-listening time in our family so that we all discuss things about each other or the day in general.
6- Spend quality time with your children
If you are wondering how to be a better parent, think about giving your children your time, which would be your best gift to them. You need to take out quality family time for your children and love them with all your heart.
“Your children need your presence more than your presents.” ~ Jesse Jackson
If you have more than one child, you could divide your time equally between them or even spend it as a family together. Being a good parent includes setting aside a few days in the month to take your child to the parks, museums, movies, library, picnics, or just about anywhere they want to go.
Another way to be a good parent is to spend time by teaching kids to do their home-work, or visiting their schools and meeting their teacher.
“The best inheritance a parent can give his children is a few minutes of his time each day.” ~ O. A. Battista
Cherished memories: I clearly remember the awesome family meals we all shared and my sister would always be the chatter-box of the family- always full of beans and had loads of stories to share! My parents ensured that every weekend was outing or fun time and our vacations were well organized and planned. Similarly, I am trying hard to work at this point with my kids, as I feel I still need to spend more time with them.
7- Avoid arguments or heated discussions in front of your children
Another way to be a better parent is to avoid heated discussions in front of your children. As a better parent, you need to move out of the room to discuss and sort out things.
This is because your children are quick to mimic what they see their parents doing, so don’t argue with your spouse or anyone else in front of the children.
“If there is anything that we wish to change in the child, we should first examine it and see whether it is not something that could better be changed in ourselves.” ~ C.G. Jung
Additionally, children learn to argue and talk rudely with each other the same way they hear their parents argue and talk.
Be a better parent by showing your kids that even intense discussion or disagreements can be resolved by talking things out in a peaceful manner.
Better parenting includes making your children feel secure when they see their parents argue. Thus, you should try and portray your love for one another in front of your children, and become best friends with your spouse.
“The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.” ~ Theodore Hesburgh
Cherished memories: Just as all couples have their ups and downs; my parents had their share of arguments. But they were very careful and made sure none of us were in the room, or we were sleeping. We actually never heard them quarrel! Similarly, we try to not talk rudely or argue when our kids are around. Sometimes when things are uncontrollable and if there is an argument, we make sure it is resolved in a good manner within a few minutes.
8- Be a role model by setting an example
The simplest and easiest way to be a better parent is to be a role model, and do things that you want your children to pick up.
Better parenting is essentially teaching your children how to behave by setting a good example. Hence, when your children are around, you need to be careful about the words you use, actions you make, and deeds you do.
“It’s not only children who grow. Parents do too. As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours. I can’t tell my children to reach for the sun. All I can do is reach for it, myself.” ~ Joyce Maynard
Remember that young children are like sponges, they soak in everything. So, if you want to teach your child about charity, then get involved into giving and charity yourself. Alongside explain to your children the importance of giving.
Being a good parent includes teaching your children about the daily chores and seeking their help when required. Get them involved, and watch them grow and develop into helpful parents.
“Your children will become what you are; so be what you want them to be.” ~ David Bly
Remember, your child looks up to you, so try being a role model and portray the character you wish your child should adopt. Children learn best by seeing examples, rather than verbal explanations.
Cherished memories: I remember the first time my mother aroused my interest in baking cakes and the amount of fun we had. She was baking at one end and I at the other, so I was watching her and following her step-by-step. Similarly, I try and get my kids involved in the kitchen on weekends to help me out to cook something interesting, or help and clean up the house (which of course they don’t like!!)
9- Allow your children to make decisions
Better parenting involves allowing your children to experience life for themselves, and learning to take certain decisions that will help them with their life later.
“If you raise your children to feel that they can accomplish any goal or task they decide upon, you will have succeeded as a parent and you will have given your children the greatest of all blessings.” ~ Brian Tracy
One of the ways to be a better parent is to avoid taking decisions for your children all the time. They need to learn to live and face the consequences of the choices they make or take in their life.
Once they learn that they are responsible for their own actions and must bear the good or bad consequences, it helps them to become good problem solvers and decision makers later in adulthood.
“Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands.” ~ Anne Frank
Cherished memories: I was always given the freedom to make my own choices or decisions, whether it was regarding what I wanted to purchase, the course I wanted to follow, or the place I wanted to visit. My parents were always beside me, though they let me decide things for myself, which built up my self-confidence and self-esteem. Similarly, this is another factor I am trying to instill into my kids presently!
10- Some other points
There are so many other points that come to mind when I think about how can I be a better parent that I want to pen down, but I know this post has once again become too long (sorry for that!), so I will be quick to briefly mention a few more of them here-
“Never fear spoiling children by making them too happy. Happiness is the atmosphere in which all good affections grow.” ~ Thomas Bray
- Being a good parent includes setting boundaries or making rules about bedtimes or putting restrictions if your child goes overboard. Kids may rebel initially, but within they enjoy knowing that their parents are concerned for their well being.
- Better parenting includes encouraging responsibility by giving them jobs to do and rewarding them for their efforts. You could give them money, more play-time or more TV time! But if what you asked isn’t done, then their privileges should be revoked!
- You can be better parent by being consistent with your children and earning their respect. When you threaten them with a punishment, ensure you follow it through and avoid self-contradiction.
- Another way to be a better and responsible parent is to teach them what is right and wrong. As parents, you need to instill gratitude and moral values, as well as the rituals and spiritual practices into them right from the time when they are young.
- Ensure your kids are healthy and fit by making sure that they have nutritious and well balanced meals. Stop them from eating junk food except on a few occasions, and try discouraging them or limiting their intake of aerated drinks or alcohol.
- Being a good parent includes understanding teenagers and their needs, and also making sure that your children don’t fall into bad company, don’t smoke, drink, or use drugs. Ensure you know your children’s friends and the group they interact with is good for them. Better and responsible parenting includes taking care of all these issues also.
“As your kids grow they may forget what you said, but won’t forget how you made them feel.” ~ Kevin Heath
So, for all those who were thinking about – how can I be a better parent, I am sure you found some worthwhile answers in the tips mentioned above.
You don’t have to be afraid to be a parent, and remember parenting doesn’t stop when a child grows up. In fact being a good parent is a life-long role and something that you keep learning as the years roll by. Better parenting is challenging, but is also rewarding and an enjoyable journey.
I loved this following quote that am sure most of you would relate to:
“If I had my child to raise all over again,
I’d build self-esteem first, and the house later.
I’d finger-paint more, and point the finger less.
I would do less correcting and more connecting.
I’d take my eyes off my watch, and watch with my eyes.
I’d take more hikes and fly more kites.
I’d stop playing serious, and seriously play.
I would run through more fields and gaze at more stars.
I’d do more hugging and less tugging.” ~Diane Loomans
When I read these lines, I do feel that may be I left out something and couldn’t give the best to my children. But I’d console myself that at least I tried my best with whatever knowledge and information I had. And, I wish I had this repository earlier so that I could improve my parenting skills.
Over to you –
If you are a parent, then did you ever question yourself or ask that – how can I be a better parent? What steps would you suggest parents should take for being a good parent? Share your experiences about how to be a better parent, or your childhood memories about how your parents dealt with you in the comments below.
Photo Credit: Photostock
This is really an AMAZING Post. OMG! I missed it for a long time. 🙁
Anyways, still its worth reading and I am saving it for my further reference. I could very well relate to many of the points mentioned here, though i missed or did not followed few of them, and now decided to follow.:-) LOL
I would like to re-post this on my page with due credit, since it will no doubt be a good guide to many of my readers, especially younger ones
Thanks Harleena for sharing this educative piece for your readers. Keep inform 🙂 🙂 🙂
Ah…no worries at all, and there are perhaps many posts you might like on my blog, though you’d have to spend time reading them through 🙂 I guess you just started visiting the blog, so lots for you to read here!
Glad you could relate to the points mentioned, while those you didn’t, I’m sure they’d give you something more to think about. I’d be more than happy if you would re-post this on your blog so that it can help other parents become better parents.
Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂
Being a parent myself I relate to this post so much. All the point here are stellar and I try to be a good parent everyday….but its hard work. As my daughter grows up, I know I can make her a good human being from the inside…but I worry about the world. May our love and the values we instill in our children be so strong that no amount of external negatives can affect them.
Thank you for this lovely post. Loved reading it.
Sorry for having missed out on replying to this comment, though I’m glad I’m catching up now 🙂
I know you are a wonderful parent yourself and I keep seeing your lovely pictures with your cute daughter on Facebook too, which just proves my point. Yes indeed, parenting IS hard work and a never ending full-time job if we want to become better parent’s, isn’t it?
Ah…most parents worry about the world and don’t do what they really feel or want to while they raise their kids. I think such things or thoughts are more prevalent in our country alone and not the West. I agree with you there – we need to instill really strong values in them that they are untouched and become wonderful humans.
Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us 🙂
Asking your children some opinion related to your house will give them a feeling of importance and responsibility.
Welcome to the blog Chris!
Yes indeed, taking our children’s opinion and advice – even though it’s for small things around the house makes them feel important and valued. And sometimes they do come up with great advice, which we might not have thought about too – isn’t it?
Thanks for stopping by. 🙂
Being a parent does not only mean having kids, it is about work,work work for the rest of your life. If you are a good parent – they will always talk positive about you.
Thanks for sharing your great tips here, every parent needs them.
Welcome to the blog Sandy!
You are absolutely right by saying that parenting isn’t just about having kids, it’s a life long responsibility where you keep working to raise your children and help them become better adults. Learning the skills of parenting helps a great deal to become better.
Thanks for stopping by. 🙂
If you know how to be a good daughter/son, for sure you will surely know how to be a good parent. And the best thing is always ask guidance from God.
Welcome to the blog Carmel!
You are absolutely right when you say that if you are a good son or daughter, you are bound to make good parents. But yes, you do need to get better always – isn’t it?
Thanks for stopping by. 🙂
Thanks for sharing this heart warming post in here. I just wanted to say that I I love this line which you have stated on your post that “Better parenting is all about striving to be become responsible parents and make improvements with the way you deal with your children. It’s not about being perfect, rather it’s about being a real parent, in the true sense.”. That is so true it’s all about being real to ourselves and to our kids as well.
There are instances that we learned most valuable lessons from our kids also. Communication is the number one aspect that every family should really have for a more harmonious relationship between one another.
Welcome to the blog (sorry I don’t know your name!)
Glad you liked those lines in the post, as they do have a lot of meaning. I guess parenting never ends and each day puts you across new challenges and teaches you how to become a better parent- isn’t it?
Yes, kids through their ways and daily dealings do teach us many new things about life that are valuable indeed. And without communication no relationship can really work, whether its parenting, work relations, or your relationship with your spouse or others.
Thanks for stopping by, and while I appreciate you taking time out to comment, but I’d appreciate if you follow my comment policy next time. 🙂
I think becoming a better parent is a life long lesson. I wish I knew when I had my first child what I know now. The other thing is that all children are so different that I find what worked with my first one does not work with my 5th. I have had to learn how to parent each one differently.
I really like all that you said about becoming a better parent.
I especially like what you say about not making decisions for your children but, teach them to make their own decisions.
I remember when my oldest son was just married or about to get married and he called me with a problem. I proceeded to go through all of the pros and cons of the situation. When I was finished he said “ok, so what should I do?” I told him that, that was his decision. I had told him what I thought on both sides and now he had the information he needed to make a decision. I would not make the decision for him and he was rather upset with me. I had never made decisions for him but, this was something he had never encountered before so he thought I should tell him what to. He did make the decision and did a good job of it.
Thanks for a great post on being a better parent.
Dee Ann Rice
Glad you could resonate with the post Dee Ann!
You are absolutely right about parenting being a life long lesson, something that really never ends! I too wish I knew some of these parenting skills when I had my kids, though it’s never too late to learn – isn’t it?
I guess we learn a lot from experience – just as in your case when you had your kids. Each child is different indeed, and as you say you have 5 of them- that must be a real handful to manage with each one with varying natures and personalities!
Being responsible for the decisions we take is something that needs to be taught to our kids as well, something that parents often overlook. You took the right decision about letting your son decide things for himself, though being parents we sometimes do need to guide or suggest things for them. But yes, the final decisions must be theirs for which they must take full responsibility happily and willingly.
Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. 🙂
Hello Harleena 🙂
You’ve just hit the nail of Perfect Parenting. I always find these qualities in my parents and for which I’m always thankful to God. The best thing which my parents have taught me and also told me to teach my children was
“Always be adaptive to any situations and learn to find small pieces of happiness even in the large bucket of sadness”
Thanks for sharing this buddy 😀
Happy Blogging !!
Welcome to the blog Sunil!
Glad you could resonate with the post and found it useful. Yes indeed, I always do feel our parents possessed much better parenting skills that we have, though all we can do is try and become like them- isn’t it?
Your parents are so right in imparting such lessons to you and for you to pass onto your kids. Being adaptable to change or any situation, and learning to be happy in that situation is what makes life worth living. This is indeed a very important lesson of life as well as for parents to remember.
Thanks for stopping by. 🙂
I really enjoyed the quotes in this post as well as the advice. Parenting is so very hard for a million reasons but not because it is hard to figure out.
The importance of spending time with your children and making them realize, recognize and understand that you value them is critical.
That unconditional love you mentioned makes all the difference in the world. There is nothing like having a cheerleader in your corner who will always be there regardless of what you do. It provides the kind of support that you can’t otherwise find.
Glad you liked the post and the quotes Jack!
Parenting is no easy job, even if you do feel you are the best parent to your child, or are trying to figure out things for yourself about raising kids. I think if you are really able to live out each day with your family and handle the ups and downs, you are doing a really good job.
I totally agree with you about appreciating and letting your kids know how much you love and value them. And there is nothing more valuable than your time, which you give to your kids- something they all look forward to.
I guess such parenting skills come by living each day with your family and the experience you gain along the way- isn’t it? I love what you write on your blog about your family and how you relate to them, which speaks volumes about the effort you put into being a doting and dutiful father.
Thanks for stopping by, it’s always a pleasure to have you over. 🙂
Wow…what a thorough list Harleena. You have a beautiful skill of writing that truly inspires action.
I love being a mom. I feel like it is one of the most amazing gifts we have in our life–and yet, it can be one of the most challenging experiences in our life. We care so much about our kids that we want to make sure we give them the best that we can so their emotional and physical health are as balanced as they can be. I am always looking to be a better mom and this list here reinforced so much of what I am already doing—not perfectly of course. One area I need to be more consistent is making sure they are keeping up with their chores. You inspired me to get better in this area.
It seems like you have very loving parents (I loved the little cherished memories that you added at the end of each section!). I sure hope my children can look back on me with the same love and respect that you honor yours.
One thing I would like to add to this list is allow your children to experience their emotions and to appreciate each of them. Each of them are important–happiness, sadness and even anger at times. When they are sad allow them to be sad. When they are angry allow them to let it flow. Don’t try to shut down their feelings, instead teach them how to use them for their life. 🙂
I love this quote! “As your kids grow they may forget what you said, but won’t forget how you made them feel.” ~ Kevin Heath
Thanks for sharing this very well thought out article. I greatly appreciate it.
Glad you could resonate with the post Joanne!
You are absolutely right about being moms! It is indeed the best God given gift we women have, as all that we undergo during our lifetime raising kids and looking after them, I doubt it’s anything compared to any other kind of challenge- isn’t it?
I have read a few of your posts where you have shared a lot about your wonderful kids, and know for sure that you are doing a wonderful job of looking after them. They surely must be so proud of you and if not now, when they do grow up, would appreciate your efforts.
It’s nice that things on this list are exactly what you are doing, though chores I agree, kids really don’t take up too well. I remember the time when my kids were younger, I had to tempt them with things to get work done, but I knew that’s not the right way. So, when I stopped doing that they stopped doing the work also- but when they were grown up a little, they realized and were back at doing their own things at least. But yes, it’s an ordeal if I have to tell them to help me around with stuff!!
Yes indeed, I consider myself lucky to have adorable parents, though I lost my mother a few years back due to cancer. But her memories are ever so fresh in my heart and mind, and so are her lessons. And I loved sharing those cherished moments I had with them, as it took me back in time as well. 🙂
That’s a very valid point- about letting your kids express their emotions, which is something often neglected by parents or often overlooked. I guess we really don’t allow them to develop their emotions or be able to freely express them, be it the feelings of happiness, sadness, anger, or frustrations. Due to this their behavior changes often that confuses us, though we don’t realize that the reason behind it is the pent up emotion.
That’s one of my favorite quotes too. 🙂
Thanks so much for stopping by and adding more value to the post by sharing your experiences. It’s always a pleasure to have you over. 🙂
I really enjoyed reading your article. You did a great work.
Parenting is one of the hardest things to do in this world. You’re always filled with so much self doubt about whether or not you’re doing the right thing for your child. I do think that a child deserves unconditional love and explaining to a child that they are loved no matter what they do, will most definitely go a long way.
Make it a wonderful day,
Glad you liked the article Daniel!
You are absolutely right about parenting being one of the hardest things in the world, and something that is easier said than done! And yes, no parent is perfect, nor do we really know what we are doing is correct or not, or the right way to bring up our children. But like they say- follow your instincts, similarly, as parents we ourselves know our kids the best and have to learn the ways to bring them up.
I guess what helps most in such cases is gaining more knowledge about parenting skills. Also, knowing your child thoroughly and then adapting, adjusting, and making changes in yourself and your child, makes a lot of difference so that they evolve into better humans- isn’t it?
Children always want to be loved and understood, and on our part if we can shower them with unconditional love- nothing could be better. However, there has to be a balance created where they are also taught life’s lessons, though in a loving manner that are then understood and taken in well.
Thanks for stopping by. 🙂
Wow, you have quite the list here and they are all very important topics.
I am a single mom and never had any support from my son’s dad – he has never been in the picture, which is actually a good thing as his lifestyle isn’t the most pleasant. My parents have been my lifesaver as they really helped him grow up to the wonderful young man that he is today. He is very hardworking with a strong head on his shoulders.
The past few years he struggled terribly with school, but now he has responsibilities of his own and has now realized how important education is and is trying extra hard. He only has 1 more year left of high school and once we get through that last year, I will be relieved..lol. I do believe he wants to go to a smaller college related to his current industry of agriculture/mechanics so that will be good for him.
Being a parent myself has been really hard for me but it is definitely easier now that he is maturing and he is so much more compassionate now and a joy to be around, not that he wasn’t before – it’s just easier to relate to him now, I guess is what I am saying 🙂
I had a terrible childhood growing up but I have made sure that my son wasn’t treated the way I was.
But, overall – I am proud to say that I have a really great kid!
Glad you could relate to the post Linda!
I can well understand your situation, and admire you for bringing up your son single-handed, which sure isn’t easy. But I think the step to move away that you would have taken, must have been in the best interest of your child. And he must be grateful to you for that, and would appreciate all that you did. Nice to know that your parents were your pillar of strength and helped you raise your son in those trying times, and their support is something you can never forget also.
You son would surely turn out to the person you have imagined him to become or what he imagined for himself, and as you say he is hardworking with a strong head on his shoulders, he is bound to sail through his last year of high school and achieve great heights in his life. Yes indeed, once he’s a little more settled, you can sure breathe a sigh of relief! This is something I am also undergoing presently with my elder one getting ready for her final year, and then choosing the career she wants to pursue.
Hats-off to you for raising your son single handed! We have a tough time sometimes, even though we are two of us raising our two kids! But yes, as they grow up and mature, they are able to understand and relate to things, which makes it a little easier for us to relate to them. But they still aren’t fully matured adults as yet, so do need the guidance and help often. 🙂
We learn from our own experiences- don’t we? That being the very reason you made sure that all that you underwent during your childhood, isn’t what you child would undergo. I guess we always want the best for our kids, and if we haven’t got the much needed love, attention, or care in our childhood, we ensure our kids get it in abundance- isn’t it?
Yes indeed, what matters at the end of the day is that you tried and are trying your best- to give the best to your son. And you deserve a pat on the back for being a proud mom of such a wonderful son!
Wishing him and you all the very best in life.
Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. 🙂
Harleena – Another cool article from you. I loved most of the quotes you have mentioned above.
Being a father to a 4 yr old, I can relate to most of these and there is no day which passes without me thinking whether I am providing everything for her which I had a lack of during my childhood. It always makes us happy when we can think our children will be better off than us due to the improvement we can bring to their lives early on.
Parenting can be tough at times, but I still feel it comes from natural instincts rather than learned behavior.
Nice to know that you could relate to the post Praveen!
Ah…I just love quotes, and there were so many wonderful ones that I had to leave out or else this already long post, would have become extra long!
Taking care of your children and ensuring that they get the best possible that we as parents can give them, is what parenting is all about. And am sure being a doting father of your 4 yr old, you would be taking that extra care to give her everything that you were deprived of in your childhood. But yes, more than materialistic things, I think we need to work out a balance by giving them those along along with strong values, which they will carry with them when they step into adulthood- isn’t it?
Yes indeed, we always do feel nice to know that our kids would do better than us and achieve great heights, at least we can pray and hope for that. Parenting is a personal experience, something that each parent has to undergo on their own. What may work for me, may not work for you or vice-versa.
But all that matters at the end of the day is that we learn to become better parents by learning the skills of parenting from wherever we can and add them to our own experience- isn’t it? Anything that works to make your child a better human being.
Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post. 🙂
Any communication posts I’m going to pay special attention to now that I’m running People Profiler.
Everything you said was dead on with what I’ve researched as well. Being critical of children can be damaging.
My brother got blamed for a lot of problems growing up. Now we laugh at it and joke about it. But I know he took it hard at the time he was facing it.
I guess my cancer was like a get out of jail free card as a kid, so my brother was stuck with all the big chores and opportunities to make mistakes.
That’s just one thing I liked about your post. The rest is brilliant as well.
Glad that you could resonate with the post Bryce!
Ah..yes the People Profiler is surely where you do need to communicate and get connected with a lot of people. 🙂
Yes indeed, as parents or even caretakers, you cannot be critical of children, as that can hurt them and cause a hindrance to their overall development. Just as in the case of your brother who underwent a great deal when he was young, which must have hurt him that time. But yes, now that he’s all grown up, you can sit and laugh at it, but kids suffer at that age that parents really can’t understand.
I can well imagine how your family must have felt about your cancer, which is something that affects everyone in the family. And your brother must have got everything his hands full of tasks to be done, as you were ill. It must have been tough on him. However, am happy that you are all through with those trying times of life.
Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. 🙂
Praising your kids is definitely one of the greatest ways of becoming a better parent. It’s easy to be a referee type parent – only picking out the bad moves they make to try to make them better. After all, we all want our kids to grow up to be better individuals.
The praise approach works better than the blame approach. It helps them to see that we’re on the look out for the good in them and appreciate the things they do to please us.
Glad you could resonate with the post Anne!
Appreciating or praising our kids boosts their morale and give them self-confidence I feel, though it’s something not many parents can do! I guess in the day to day affairs, we tend to forget this small change we need to make in ourselves.
You are absolutely right about parents mainly picking up the bad moves, or pointing to the flaws of their kids, which of course is also important to bring them up properly. But that should always be done in a proper way, and balanced out with rounds of appreciation- isn’t it?
Thanks for stopping by. 🙂
Amazing post Harleena!
Though I don’t have kids yet 🙂
Glad you liked the post Farouk!
I can understand that many don’t yet have kids, though it would be a good lesson to learn whenever you do- isn’t it?
Thanks for stopping by. It’s always a pleasure to have you over. 🙂
You said it all Harleena!
I agree with everything you said about parenting…although implementing them is the hard part. But as parents we should always strive to do our best, not to attain perfection but to do our best for our children. They are precious gifts from God to us.
Welcome to the blog Shine!
Glad you could relate to the post and you agreed with most of the things 🙂
Yes indeed, things are easier said than done- and parenting sure isn’t a cakewalk! But being parents all we can do on our part is to keep striving to get better and enhance our parenting skills. Kids are indeed God’s precious and most treasured gifts to us, and we need to handle them with care.
Thanks for stopping by. 🙂
Wow Harleena, what a wonderful post!
Some of it hit home in an excellent way and I polished my fingernails on a puffy, proud chest… and other part made me really think.
Parenting is the most difficult, yet most fulfilling job I have ever had. My children are by far my greatest accomplishment. It’s tough to find a balance… it really is. As you say, we need to be real.
I find parenting to be a ‘personal develpement’ journey… I try to better myself so I can be a better role model to them.
Something I find tremendously important is preserving their self-esteem. I am just completing a course focusing on raising happy confident kids.
I am a great communicator with my kids. (I’ll pat myself for that) however sometimes I wonder if I don’t treat them ‘too old’ for their age. I am also very structured… they like that.
I can be strict… and worry I’m over strict as my dad was…. although I know it’s only because he loves me so much. I am also too soft sometimes… but think ‘oh what the heck… you only live once.
Parenting is indeed a balancing act…I’m not sure our job is ever done and I am certainly not sure we can ever stop improving.
Loved the post. Thanks so much.
Welcome to the blog Jayne- nice to have you over!
Glad you could relate to the post, and am sure you must be a proud mom to your kids for the way you are bringing them up 🙂
Your’e absolutely right about parenting being the toughest, yet most fulfilling job- something that parent’s alone can understand! It is a personal journey and something each one of us has to deal with and handle in our own best ways. What suits or works for one, may not work for another parent. But all that matters is that we keep trying to get better with our parenting skills in the best possible ways- isn’t it?
Building self-esteem and self-confidence in kids is important for their overall development that enables them to become confident and bold adults- I feel. The course sure must be interesting and am sure would make you wiser about your kids.
You are already doing wonders with your kids, if you can relate or communicate with them- as that does require the skills to come down or reach to their level, which surely isn’t easy either! Most parents think it works best to be authoritative or in command or they prefer to spell out the things that needs to be done, rather than listening or talking to their kids about it. I have been guilty of doing that also, and need to keep reminding myself to get better there! Guess we forget to remember that things can be conveyed in a better way too.:)
Being strict is good in a way as it makes them disciplined in many things, though we need to be careful we don’t become over-strict, which distances our kids from us or leads them to hate us in a way. We understand the love our parents had for us much later in life, though when they are strict when we are young- does tear us apart.
I’ve also often been told that I’m too soft with my kids and am spoiling them in some ways, or that I need to get stricter to make them more disciplined. However, I try to create a balance between both, being strict and soft- where and how the need arises. This is how kids learn best I feel.
Parenting sure is a never ending- full time job!! I don’t think we can ever stop parenting or being parents, even when we grow old. And there surely is no limit to getting better as well.
Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone.:)
I like number nine a lot (I of course like the others as well) and think that a big part of my job will be helping her to make the “right” choice when so often in life that choice is 100 times harder the the “wrong” one.
I have another 25 days or so to read posts like these so I’ll be slightly better equipped to handle her arrival on April 13th 🙂 and won’t be quite so terrified that everything I do and teach will be helping to shape someone’s brand new life.
Thank you Harleena, I enjoyed the post thoroughly!
Hope you’re having a great weekend!
Welcome to the blog Warren!
Sorry for the late reply, as for some reason your comment went into the spam folder 🙂
I am glad you find the post worthy. Allowing kids to learn to make their own decision is very essential in today’s life, and am sure you’ll do a good job. I presume the person you refer to as “her” is your daughter and you seem to try to gear up to be a great life coach to her.
All advice and knowledge will certainly be helpful, but you got to be your natural self and easy on your child. Wish you all the best – and do let me if my presumptions were right.
Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful weekend as well. 🙂
Thanks Harleena, no worries. I was ending up in my own along will all my blogs commenters last week. It doesn’t seem like spam would be so hard to conquer, but I guess it is! 🙂
Yes my daughter (first) is set to arrive in April (the Doctors say Friday the 13th LOL) and I’m busy buying clothes, diapers, cribs, change tables, high chairs, and a million other things. LOL
She even has her first snow suit (she’s going to be born in the Spring so it’s for 9 months) 🙂
I’m so excited to meet her.
Looking forward to the future!
Here’s to a great week to us both!
Sorry for that Warren!
I guess if you comment for the first time, CommentLuv does mark them as spam, though the later comments come through directly.
You must be so excited and looking forward to her arrival! I can well imagine your never ending shopping list for her- loved to hear all about it as it reminded me of my time long ago. 🙂
I can feel your excitement right up till here!! You already brought her a snow-suit- that’s so cute – catering well in advance!
Wishing you all the very best for your new bundle of joy 🙂
Have a wonderful week ahead as well 🙂
Yep! I’m sure people are crossing the street when they see me walking down the road with this big grin on my face! 🙂
“Nobody is that happy, must be crazy, better cross the road” LOL
Thank you, I will and I’ve added you to my list of places to visit during my day! So I’ll see you again. Looking forward to reading your posts!
Lol…that’s absolutely natural for a excited to-be father! Am sure half the people must have made out whats going on 🙂
Thanks for adding me to your list, and I look forward to hearing the good news as well 🙂
I do not have any children, but my oh my, do I understand that being the best parent that we can is so very important.
I don’t know what I would have done if I didn’t have a good mother. I can only imagine people having had bad parents when the world is already so tough out there!
As parents we basically shape the personality of our children. We make them either balance adults or sometimes very disturbed ones. Look into the background of people who turned violent, and you will see some parents that made a lot of mistakes, to say the least.
My mother raised my brother and I all by herself, because my father died in a car crash when I was five and my bother two. It certainly wasn’t always easy for her, but she did her best.
Thanks for the beautiful post, and have a great day!
Glad you could resonate with the post Sylviane!
Yes indeed, being good parents or striving to get better is what parenting is all about- isn’t it? I am so glad you had caring and loving parents and that you think so well about your mother.
The upbringing of a child and the way you mold their future largely depends upon parents and they way they bring them up. You are quite right in saying that the personality of our children mainly depends on how parents behave with them in their formative and growing years. It’s often noticed that kids brought up with love and care, turn out to be loving and caring adults- while those who are disturbed or hurt due to various reasons in their childhood, do face physiological problems in adulthood.
You mother must have undergone a great deal to have brought you up single-handed, hats off to her! Single parenting sure isn’t easy, though it’s wonderful to see how she raised you for which you must be so grateful to her.
Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. Always a pleasure to have you over. 🙂
What a wonderful choice of topic!
All though I can not yet say that I am a parent of human children, I have a deep respect for the experience that so many have in the raising of a child.
I consider myself sort of a mentor of children, but that’s a narrow and limited experience with regard to the full monty one has when the child is under their full time care.
I enjoyed the quotes and tips so much. My favourite one was: “As your kids grow they may forget what you said, but won’t forget how you made them feel.” ~ Kevin Heath
Ahh, that really took me somewhere back to being a kid and remembering the things that I felt growing up. We don’t always recognize how fragile and impressionable children are. It so key to treat them with patience, consideration, and an extra dose of TLC.
I have found that the more I pay attention, the more I have learned from children. They are wonderful teachers. Their ways are different from many adults’ ways because they haven’t yet become so indoctrinated by the world as we have…but if we pay attention and listen with open hearts, I feel that we may learn how to be better human beings as well as better parents. 🙂
I love this topic, Harleena. I can always tell you put so much of your heart into your writing. Thank you for that. It is a gift to so many…
Have a blessed weekend, my friend!
Nice to learn that you liked the choice of topic Cat!
Glad to know that you relate so well with children, even though you are not a parent yet. That truly is commendable 🙂
I loved that quote by Kevin Health, and so many others as well. I guess I get lost when I start looking through quotes for the post!
Yes indeed, the post does take you down memory lane- just as it did to me! I loved remembering the good old days and the way my parents brought us up. I feel those days were wonderful and something that I can never forget. We never realize that kids need to be handled with care and love more than anything else, till we remember our old days or become parents ourselves- isn’t it?
Kids do teach us a great deal, directly or indirectly- and yes, they teach us many things along the way. The most important lesson I’ve learnt is to become more patient and understanding with my kids. And yes, your priorities do change a great deal, as they always come first no matter what. You are so right about kids teaching us to become better human beings and parents 🙂
I do try and put in my best in my posts by sharing my personal experiences and the information with everyone, with the hope that they benefit from it. I’m happy if people do find it useful 🙂
Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. It’s always a pleasure to have you over.
Have a wonderful weekend as well, dear friend 🙂
This post just blew me away! But yes, I will still come back and comment! 🙂
I feel there is no one way to parenting; there are just so, so many factors that one can’t decide what makes one the best. But yes, at least one can try to be a good parent. And that effort makes a lot of difference. I feel parents who take the conscious step to make their children’s lives better and work on it have won the battle already. Concern is the first step; identify your child’s need and work along.
One thing I strongly feel about is parents comparing their kids to other kids; never ever do that. Your child should learn to love themselves for the person they are and for their uniqueness; make them love themselves; only then will they be able to appreciate anything else!
It’s always a pleasure to have you over Hajra!
But I hope you were not blown off too far!! Or was it the post length 🙂
You are absolutely right about there not being any one or two ways about parenting, as each parent will have their own way to take care of their kids. What works for me, may not work for another parent or a non-parent. Each parent has to try out and figure out what works best for him or her, and their children.
Knowing your kids and identifying their needs or wants, and working towards making them better is the base from where we start working towards the betterment of our children.
Yes indeed, comparisons are horrible! Even if they are a few words spoken about another child, your child is bound to feel hurt or bad about it. Parents need to realize that each child is an individual identity, unique and different in their own ways. And you should willingly accept them for who they are and love them unconditionally for that!
All that matters is that you keep trying to get better with your parenting skills, so that you are able to guide your children on the right path to overall development.
Thanks so much for adding more value to the post.:)
This is an important post, and I agree with the points you are making. To me, one of the most important things in order to be a good dad, is to always be there for my kids. I am at home when they wake up, I am here when they go to sleep, and I am around during the day. We’re not together all the time, but they always know where I am and how to reach me and that I would stop whatever I am doing in order to be with them.
I hope you’re having a wonderful weekend.
Glad you could resonate with the post Jens!
Nice to know that you are always there for your kids, which is the best thing you can really give them- your time and undivided attention. I feel these are the formative years when they need you the most, and being with them during their good and bad times is wonderful for their overall development.
Even if you are not with them all the time, if they know you are around or have ways to reach you- they feel secure and loved. You are truly blessed to have the opportunity to be with them, which I’m sure they would cherish when they grow up. 🙂
Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. 🙂
Have a wonderful weekend as well 🙂
🙂 I loved the post.
I enjoyed the “quote” at the end. I’d add – no nagging 🙂 Most times, treating children as good friends works. They always listen when one reasons things out with them – as children are great at listening to logic. I feel blessed – I had a great relationship with my Mom, which my son reveled in – and today, I have a wonderful relationship with him.
I am pretty sure you’re a fabulous parent, Harleena. Your goodness is tangible.
Nice to know you loved the post Vidya!
Ah…I can’t do without quotes and the last one is something I came across just yesterday, and even though I know this post got a little longer than usual because of the quotes- but I find that they enhance the post someways 🙂
You are absolutely right about not nagging children or any one for that matter, as no one really likes it! Treating your teenage kids as your friends works best, though when they are a little younger – they do need to be guided or disciplined, but that again can always be done in a loving manner- isn’t it?
I have read a great deal about your relationship with your Mom and am glad your son was part of it all, thus has a loving and understanding relationship with you, which is so important nowadays.
I won’t call myself fabulous, nor anyone who knows everything about parenting. But yes, I am learning how to be a better parent every single day 🙂
Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. Always a pleasure to have you over. 🙂
This is a lovely post!
I spent most of yesterday playing with my friends one year old and it made me want to be a parent even more!
Glad you liked the post Harriet!
Nice to learn that you enjoy kids, and I hope and pray you do become a parent soon! Just as the famous quote by Henry Ward Beecher goes- “We never know the love of a parent till we become parents ourselves.” – you need to experience the joys of parenting to know how it feels 🙂
Thanks for stopping by 🙂
Right on Harleena!
Being a child I would have loved to of been heard and understood more. It seemed that communicating my wants or needs didn’t go over too well with some of the older folks in my life.
Being a father I spend as much time as I can with my son and my main goal with him is to remind him to love himself unconditionally.
I feel bad for kids whose parents didn’t spend much time with them either because of work commitments or plain, old apathy.
Glad to know that you could resonate with the post Justin!
Yes indeed, to be heard to and have someone to communicate or convey your thoughts to are important aspects in a child’s life. I see my kids and how they behave if they don’t have either of us to talk out things with. I guess they just need an outlet or way to express their feelings at home, which is different when they are with friends or others.
I can well understand what you must have felt when you weren’t able to convey your feelings or needs to your folks at home- must have made you feel miserable within. I feel this is the very reason you are doing just the opposite with your son- that is, make sure you spend maximum time with him and give him the freedom to express himself or his feelings to you, and learn to love himself.
Nowadays with our hectic lifestyle, no one has time for anyone. But as parents, I guess time HAS to made for kids, just like you manage to take out time for work or other things. This is the most important phase of their lives and the time they need you to be with them. There are never any ifs and buts in doing things you want and believe in- isn’t it?
Thanks so much for stopping by and adding more value to the post. 🙂
You sure make some great points here, my friend. While I’m no longer a parent at the moment, if my daughter were still alive; I am certain that I would do all I knew to be the best parent I could be to her. I do hope to one day adopt though, and when that happens these are certainly the values I hope to incorporate into my parenting.
I wouldn’t want to be known as being strict by them, but I would have some set guidelines to ensure that I prepare them for the world I’d be sending them out into. Like you shared though, the best way to do that is to be a great example for them. Actions indeed speak much louder than words ever could.
The greatest thing a parent could ever do for their child is allow them to be a child, and also give them boundaries; while also letting them learn as much as they can on their own. It’s those lessons we truly get to appreciate when we become adults, isn’t it? I know for me, my mother and grandmother allowed me to find somethings out for myself; while other things they protected me from. The things they would protect me from they explained to me why I wasn’t allowed to do them. That made the world of difference for me.
There’s nothing worse than being told not to do something, and not be explained why we can’t do it. That is a bit controlling, and with children if we try to control them too much, they may start to resent us for that; especially if we ourselves are doing it.
Fantastic post, my friend. This is definitely one that parents and non-parents alike should take into consideration. Even if an individual isn’t a parent at the moment, they just never know whose child find them influential. We both know that they are always watching someone, and learning some type of practice; it’s best the lesson or practice is a good one.
Thanks for sharing! 🙂
Glad you could relate to the post Deeone!
I know you’re not a parent, yet you have so beautifully expressed your views about parenthood 🙂
I am sure if you have kids or adopt them, you would make a doting and loving father- and do everything possible to make their lives comfortable and happier.
Being strict doesn’t always mean to be stern or not reachable, as you can make your own family rules and set standards that can be followed with love and understanding. Strictness only distances you from your children I feel and makes you unreachable.
You are absolutely right about actions speaking louder than words. And if children watch their parents do good or behave well, that is exactly what they pick up and follow all through their lives. So, be the role model or set examples of what you want to see your children become.
Setting boundaries is always welcome and a must if you want to make your kids responsible and turn out to be good adults. They learn to be disciplined as well as learn to remain within control. But yes, as parents we need to give them their freedom to be children and guide them through their childhood, alongside preparing them for adulthood.
I know you have so often spoken about your grandmother and mother playing a major role in your upbringing, which is what made you who you are today. And I feel you will always remain grateful for them for giving you that freedom, or teaching you the various lessons about life. I guess at times, we may not realize things when we are younger, and it’s only when we grow up or age that we realize the values imparted to us.
Yes indeed, controlling your children for everything is kind of stifling their freedom and creativity- though at times you do need to do it in order to guide or lead them towards the right path, especially when they are young. And if you control or stop them from doing things that you yourself do, they will surely resent you and as soon as they are grown up, would do those very same things! So, you do need to be careful about what you do!
Nice to know that you liked the post, as it was meant for parents, non-parents, and to be parents as well. And you added more value to the post my friend 🙂
Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. 🙂