The one thing I have learned about being a parent is it seems to bring up every single one of my childhood issues. – Me
The toughest part about being a parent is not letting your own past affect your parenting. You can say, if I had to describe myself, that I am a permissive parent. Yes, I finally admit it! If Dr. Phil says: ‘’you cannot change what you do not acknowledge’’, then I have to acknowledge I let my children get away with murder. If there is disrespect in my home, it is because I teach my children, though my actions and NON-actions, that I can be disrespected.
I have two children: a pre-teen boy and a teenage girl. Both children, for the longest time, have not had any chores (except for their rooms), inconsistent parenting, and the most tolerant mom around. Don’t get me wrong, I am no wuss (well maybe sometimes), however; I am a parent in constant learning. The journey into self-respect for myself is translating into respect between all parties. I want them to grow up in a loving, caring home but it is my job to send them out in the world as loving, caring, responsible, hard working adults.
What I think many of parents do in 2011 is try to make sure their children are happy by all means. I don’t know if this has something to do with us 30/40 something’s feeling like we were not heard as children; however, I know some of us let our children get away with too much. Well, I do anyway. Therefore, I had to devise a plan.
First, the one thing I have put into place in my home is consistent discipline. I’m still a rookie, however, I am starting to say what I mean, and mean what I say. I may go overboard at times, or once and awhile give in; however, when I give a consequence I make sure I can follow through with it. No more screaming: “Your grounded for 3 weeks with no computer!!”. “Three weeks with no COMPUTER? and GROUNDED?” I say to myself pulling my hair ”What was I thinking? She’ll drive me nuts on day 2!” Presently, I make sure I can follow through on those consequences I give my child. If they are not sufficient, I can make the necessary adjustments the next time.
Second, I started to give my children chores. The rules are clear. They must have their rooms clean at least once a week and they must help with the dishes. Why so little you say? Well, it’s the same thing as the consequences, I’d rather give them less and follow through that too much and give up. So, as the weeks go on they will be doing the dishes on their own. Every one taking baby steps and the transition is much easier all ‘round.
Thirdly, and this one is a toughie, I’m practicing speaking less. My son is 12 and already thinks my voice is annoying!! Why? Because I’m all talk and no action. So hopefully steps one and two will help me through this phase, which is a challenge.
Since my son is ADHD I’ve had the privilege of taking a few parenting courses. Yet, no parenting course in the world will help if I don’t put the tools into practice. So, like me, give yourself some room to breathe, when you are ready, AND just you: Not when your neighbour or mom whispers “Don’t you think you should teach your children blah”. You’ll see, whenyour frustration level so uncomfortable that your eyes are about to pop out of your head, you’ll know its time for you to change the things you can, and change what you can finally acknowledge.
and I say: I’m a mom, and I’m a permissive parent on the road to good parenting!