Thursday, 31 January 2013

And the best way to parent is.......?

Is anyone else out there as confused as i am about the best way to manage their kids??  Some of the 'well meaning' advice from every man and his dog, seems to be getting a bit .... ridiculous.  I can understand things like not calling your kids names or bad words, (obviously i agree with this one!!), and making sure they understand that it's their behavior you don't like and not them is good too, but i draw the line at not being able to tell my child he is Handsome, or Clever, or Smart!!!

That's Right!!  Telling your child he/she is good looking or smart or fast etc, is no longer a Good Thing!!  According to several (well meaning i'm sure) experts, it makes the child feel unnecessarily pressured to reach that same 'expectation', which isn't always realistic or achievable.

Has this been around for a while and i've just missed it completely or is it the newest thing in child development??

I'm sorry to those reading that agree with this way of thinking but WTF!  What happened to telling your little princess that she is beautiful no matter what?  Or telling your boy that he's really clever because he read a story???  How is this wrong?  Since when did telling a child he's fast make him turn into a nervous wreck trying desperately to win every race to meet an ideal??  Back when i was younger it made me feel AMAZING to hear that i was fast (and dammit i was!!) because it meant that even when i didn't win, there was still someone that said i was fast, and therefore i was!

I've been trying all night to find a good side to this 'expert advice' (please feel free to politely enlighten me) but i'm failing.  We seem to be acting so PC about everything now, and wrapping our precious babies in cotton wool/bubble wrap/defense shields, but what are we protecting them from??  To stop praising our kids and simply focus on the action they're doing seems wrong to me.

Does anyone else remember being complimented on their appearance by their parents??  Did it make you feel pressured or did it make you feel loved?  Is it just me that felt loved in response to being told i'm awesome? I certainly didn't grow up feeling like a failure because i didn't win every race or every beauty contest (Ok, so there were never any beauty contests).  I grew up knowing the reality that there were always going to be girls that were prettier than me, but that i was still beautiful.  I was taught that i was clever too, maybe not in the same way as the math whizz sitting next to me, but still clever in my own way.  And you know what else, it made me feel like i was just as good as they were.  Like an equal.  And it made me appreciate what they were good at too.  (Im quite sure i didn't think of it in such an in depth way when i was 5, but that's ok)

My point is this i guess.  I grew up to be a reasonably normal individual.  (Please note, rebellious teen phase doesn't count in this discussion).  Sure i have issues (Show me the solitary person who doesn't please) but i'm still a well rounded individual.  Life is hard sometimes, and reality can often be a difficult one to swallow, but to never be called a beautiful princess by my dad, or told that i'm fast and strong like superman by my mum?  That would be a tragedy.

I know these experts aren't saying 'don't praise them at all' but why do i have to praise my sons actions/behaviors, but leave them out? I don't want to say 'that's a neat shirt', i want to say 'You're handsome in that shirt!'  And i want to tell him he's good looking because i want him to see that he is, and that beauty has many forms and faces, just as being clever has many shapes and shades!!  I don't believe saying these things to my child are going to torment him as he grows, make him focus solely on his appearance, or make him feel unworthy when he's having a bad day, i think they will be the things that keep him afloat.

And another thing, why is it ok to let them believe in all things fairy tale (santa, toothfairy, easter bunny) but not believe in their own Awesomeness??

So who's picked up that i'm over tired right now!!??
 I don't usually like posting about things like this because everyone has their own way of doing things, and i really do believe that everyone has the right to do things how they want without criticism or judgment (within reason obviously), but this has really been bugging me!  So there you go.  That's my 2 cents worth.  If you have any questions or comments, i'l be the one in the background telling my boys they're Freakin' Awesome/clever/smart/gorgeous!!

Toodles!!  :)

'Live for a Life without Regret'


  1. Honestly, I don't read many articles or books on how to raise my own children because ultimately I'm going to raise them the way I believe to be the right way PLUS I'm a conservative so my way of parenting is a lot stricter and there's a lot of things in books that I don't agree with. I always research the author before reading a parenting book. If I see they are liberal I wont read it.

    I say that you should parent your children according to what feels right with you and your family but however you choose to parent I strongly believe that consistency is key.

    BTW, I always praise my 2 year old whenever he memorizes a new color or says a new word. I tell him how smart he is and that makes momma happy. I don't see anything wrong with that.
    So you do what you feel is right ...

    Have a good day.

    1. So true Grace!! I think i need to stop looking at so many articles, because it always just ends up confusing me!! And definitely true about the consistency!!

  2. i totally agree with you! i have heard about this before and i don't agree. like my son fed the dogs today and i said "awesome! good job!" I hope I didn't damage his adulthood (sarcasm) you want to compliment them then do it! it is better than berating them!

    you can parent your child how you want (i may think it's weird or whatever) but as long as your not hurting them then go ahead. just don't tell me how to raise mine!

    1. Lol!! If that kind of praise is damaging then my kids are in for a long tragic life!! I agree with Live and let Live too, and so long as the kids are happy and healthy then i really don't see the problem!! And you're right too, how someone else chooses to raise their kids shouldn't be anyone else business or job to judge!