No one is born knowing how to be a parent. I am not a parent, but I understand that parenting can be difficult sometimes. Some parents focus so much on what they should be doing and forget about what they should not be doing.
Though I am not a parent, the following list does not only apply to children. I think it’s something that no one, regardless of age, would like others to do to them.
Below is a list of things no parent should ever do to their child.
- Ignoring your child.
Although many parents do not intend to do so, it is one of the most common things to do– to ignore your child. I understand that life can get busy, but you should never ignore your child. A healthy parent-child relationship involves quality time. Even if it is just 20 minutes, spend some time with your child. Studies show that if you are distracted when spending time with your child, children are more likely to act out and behave poorly.
Spending time with your child helps them feel loved and secure.
- Compare them to others.
Even if I mean to encourage them, please never compare them to others. Drawing comparisons between them or their achievements and someone else hurts their self-esteem. As a parent, you should accept your child with all their flaws and competencies.
- Invade their privacy.
I understand that it is difficult to quell the curiosity of knowing what your child is doing. There are times where you want to know more about their life or what they are up to. But, invading your child’s privacy is not the way to go. It denotes that you don’t respect their privacy, and you undermine their agency.
The best way is to create dialogue. Talk to them. They may not tell you everything, and that is okay. Your children are people, and people are allowed to keep certain things to themselves. By opening a space for dialogue and conversation, you give them the freedom to choose what they want to share with you. To create a conversation with your children, lead with positive uplifting questions and ask questions to gain awareness.
- Be overly permissive.
One mistake that parents can make is being overly permissive. In an attempt to befriend your child, you forget that you are their parent. While you want to be amicable and create a space for them to approach you, if necessary, you also need to provide guidance and correction. Letting your child do anything they want is not okay. You should establish clear boundaries. In doing so, you are helping your child understand what is acceptable and what is not– a skill that will help them later in life.
- Be quick to point out their flaws.
Another mistake some parents make is pointing out your child’s flaws too quickly. While the intention may be geared towards improvement and progress, solely pointing out your child’s flaws makes them incredibly self-conscious.
- Ignore their mental health
One thing that a parent should never ignore is their child’s mental health. A person’s mental health is also part of their general well-being. Hence, as the parent and guardian, you should consider your child’s mental health equally as important as their physical health.
- Ignore your mental health
The last thing a parent should not do is ignore their mental health. Parenting is difficult. It is easy to forget to take care of yourself while taking care of others. But, you should, as much as possible, try to take care of yourself as well. Your child is dependent on you and, they need you to take care of them. To do this well, you should be healthy too.
Parenting is difficult. I, nor anyone else, is in a position to judge your parenting. But, there are certain things that you should never do to your child. I hope that these points can help you grow as a parent.
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Mintbook. (2020, November 24). Top 11 things parents should never do to their children. Mintbook. Retrieved November 23, 2021, from https://mintbook.com/blog/top-11-things-parents-should-never-do/.
Powers, M. (2021). 20 ways to start a conversation with a child. Tootris. Retrieved November 23, 2021, from https://tootris.com/edu/blog/parents/20-ways-to-start-a-conversation-with-a-child-without-asking-how-their-day-was/.
The Soul Publishing. (2018, February 11). 10 things parents shouldn’t do for their children. Bright Side – Inspiration. Creativity. Wonder. Retrieved November 23, 2021, from https://brightside.me/inspiration-family-and-kids/10-things-you-shouldnt-do-for-your-children-448610/.