Friday, October 7, 2011

Parenting 101

I read an article a few weeks ago about very harsh, very critical and domineering parents. These parents believe that the only way to raise children is to tell them what to do, how to think and to schedule ALL their time with activities that “will lead to better grownups” – such as music lessons, tutoring, language lessons etc... I don’t get it.

The only growing up people do is to mature physically and get taller. Humans don’t grow up...they grow. Period. We all grow into who we want to be or who we feel we are meant to be.

Children aren’t an extension of us; they are their own people. Their lives aren’t ours to do with as we please, but theirs to do with as they please. Parents are meant to love first and foremost and then to guide, encourage and support their children, not to dominate.

I don’t want my children to do only what they’re told; I want the boys to think for themselves. I’ve tried to raise them in such a way that they’ve learned to do just that. I want them to question everything, to learn as many new things as they can. I want them to have open and inquisitive minds, not only as young people but as adults too.

My goal with Shane and Bradley has always been to support them in learning who they are, who they want to be and how they want to contribute to our world. Isn’t that what we all want for our children? How can our children learn to think for themselves and learn to make good choices in their lives if we do all their thinking and decision making for them? 

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