Raising your children to become productive adults is a challenge of parenthood. It starts with building self-esteem. They must believe in themselves. They are not going to believe in themselves without your support and encouragement. As a parent we are not going to be able to give them the support and encouragement they need if we haven’t first instilled morals and values in our children. This needs to begin in the beginning, when they are young, by your example and by the example of the other people we put in their lives.
The behavior of others matter. Our extended family, your child’s: aunts, uncles, and cousins whose behavior is not what you’d like your child to emulate needs discussion. They can be used as examples of poor choices and their place in society should be seen as consequences of life’s choices. Although, we still love them, we can express that we do not support or enable inappropriate behavior of those we love. As a result, they will avoid others with unhealthy behaviors and avoid taking on these behaviors themselves.
As the family members who are making healthy choices should be praised for their efforts and achievements and set as a standard that one should be proud to attain.
I’m at the letting go stage as my children are now young adults and my youngest, the ‘freshie’, who I’ve written posts about has just turned seventeen. I am still apprehensive, believing they will make the right choices as seen in the anxieties I express in my writings. Even though, I’ve given them all the foundation to make me proud, I worry: Did I do a good enough job?
A lot of times my twenty-seven year old son, over the years, will call me with different life choices and ask “Mom, what do you think I should do?” I ask him to look at each of the choices, where he thinks each choice may bring him, and then tell him I’m sure he will make the right decision. I tell all my children “You need to have a plan and then you need to have plan B.”
Letting go is not easy, but it’s easier if you have instilled your expectations.
Are you prepared to use the holiday gathering as a parenting tool? I encourage you all to add you comments below.