Parenthood - It's a schooling time folks...
Parenthood is the best experience of life. With the birth of a newborn, a different phase of life gets started with new responsibilities and beautiful moments.
Yes, It's a new inning for parents, And a new exciting journey for that little booger.
As our child grows, our expectations from our kids also start growing with the time. And then comes several stages where we have to go through strained relationships with our little ones as they grow.
Today, I chose this topic to throw some light on.
This article is not about so-called “Parenting Tips.”
Every parent knows very well how to look after and grow their kids according to child's nature, grasping, understanding.
I shall be talking about those things that are knowingly or unknowingly expected by parents from a child, but which could be a nightmare for a child during the process of growing up and even after that for a longer period of time.
I am penning down this article not only for you, but also for me to remind myself to not make these mistakes during the parenthood process.
1. Bombarding the gist of Don’ts
Here, I don't mean that never ever shout at the child when the child is not disciplined. Sometimes, we have to become strict parents if the situation demands so. But mere shouting will not help unless and until it is backed by a few words of understanding during the tender age. We have to show them what is right and wrong until they learn on their own to distinguish between the two.
I am simply saying do not read "a list of Don’ts" every now and then in front of them.
“Don't jump on a new sofa set.”
"Don't draw on walls with crayons.”
"Don't scatter your toys in the room.”
The child is bound to make clean rooms messy. (Extra work for Mom and Dad, LOL!)
Instead, choose to say Do's, Let's see now how the whole scenario changes with this,
"You jump on a new couch, but make sure your legs are cleaned to not leave muddy marks on the fabric."
"Express your creativity, always."
"Toys will get scattered while playing, but once you are done playing, put all the toys in the respective baskets."
You see, how our changed tone and sentences will not leave a harsh impact on the child's psychology.
Usually, when we tell our kids not to do something they end up doing the things that we asked them not to do. It's natural. Even I used to do the same when I was a kid. Yeah, spilling some beans here with my little insider nuggets.
2. Questioning capabilities
“Oh, You messed up everything.”
" You can’t do a single thing properly.”
" You have no capability to get the first rank.”
" You can't dance well.”
Doesn’t this sound demotivating? Yes, It does!
Then think about how adversely it must be impacting a child’s mind. These words are toxic to the child's mental health.
Instead of what they can't do, show them what they can really do well. Nobody can be perfect and not all can get the first rank all the time.
Your child could be a specially challenged or a slow learner. Let them learn at their own pace.
Make sure you teach them to love themselves, not to be harsh on themselves, teach them how self-esteem is important, let them express their views and opinions, let them be more creative and exploring, let them make mistakes, let them fail several times.
As a parent, it is our responsibility to not infuse any wrong assumptions on them about their image, nature, behaviour, performance, thinking. Wrong conditioning of beliefs on them could have a deteriorating impact on their thinking for a lifetime.
3. Failure is a part of life
Let them fail. Not once or twice…Multiple times…
It is “OK” even if the child fails in the exams, even if they could not perform well in the competition. Let them learn through failures and mistakes.
“Lessons that children learn from failures and setbacks are the most important lessons they learn to be successful in life.”
Getting a rank, and winning a competition is needed to have a good academic record, but it has nothing to do with surviving a bad phase of life in the future or developing an endurance to sustain through setbacks, hurdles, and obstacles.
Teach them how to live life, how to enjoy the small things, how to honor what they have, and how to face struggles. These are the most important lessons for them to know the challenges of life and to learn how to sail through this harsh reality on their own.
4. Hampering creativity
One day, I was at my friend’s house. Her son was making some interesting stuff with colorful papers. I could see his face was filled with curiosity and happiness. He was involved in exploring his own tiny world. After some time, he came to me to show me what he was making, the moment he was about to show me his creative work, my friend shouted at him, “Why are you wasting your time doing this nonsense stuff? “Go and complete your homework instead.” Just in a moment, all his excitement was broken into pieces. He stopped doing whatsoever he was doing and he went into his room and smashed the door in anger and disappointment. I really felt bad for him.
The boy had forgotten what he has made on the nearest dining table. I decided to see what was that he was enjoying making wholeheartedly. As I came close to the dining table I found something stunning there. He had made a dance paper fan. It was crafted, wonderfully. It was so beautiful!
Before leaving, I went into his room to see him off. I found him busy doing his homework. I decided to have a few words with him and our conversation went this way,
Me:- Hello! Are you busy? I want to say something, I really liked your fan. Shall I take it with me?
The boy:- Really, it is so good? (With a big smile on his face.)
Me:- Yes, Indeed!
The boy:- Thank you! But I can’t give you this. I have made this for our gardener. He sweats a lot while gardening. This fan might help him to feel comfortable and relaxed while completing his chores.
I was stunned by his mature reply! For a while, I felt like he is more mature than his parents.
Children are good observers. They are so creative. They are so curious to learn new things and to teach us good lessons of life.
Let their creativity flourish. Do not suppress their creativity the way my friend did it unknowingly.
5. The root of inferiority complex
Comparing your child's potential, capacity, capability, and intelligence with others surely hampers a child's self-worth, self-esteem, and self-confidence. Someone is going to be smarter than your kid. Someone is going to be prettier than your kid. Someone is going to be better than your kids.
Don’t compare and push them to match their standards with other kids. Never force them to become like someone else. Then only they will learn the beauty of “Being Yourself", "Being Unique”.
If these points are not taken care of consciously by the parents then it might happen that the fragile and vulnerable mind of a child will be wrecked not only when they are young but also after they are fully grown adults.
A child’s mind easily gets conditioned due to what their parents tell them and this conditioning is so impactful that even when a child is a mature person, still that conditioning, scars, wounds on the mind could haunt them mentally…
"Parenthood is the schooling time for both, parents and kids."
I hope we all will choose consciously to not make these mistakes with our beloved little monsters…
(The article is dedicated to all lovely parents/ parent out there and to your little sunshines. Parenthood is not easy, it needs a lot of work, adjustments, compromises, and sacrifices, but the whole journey could be memorable if we know very well as parents/ a parent how to drive through this twisty yet a very beautiful road.)