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Words To Give You Strength
by Joan Bramsch
This I believe:
Exhausted parents -- particularly single parents -- have succumbed to
feelings of guilt and inadequacy because children, now accustomed to being
the center of attention, have become dependent upon and demanding of their
parents. Parents' feelings of guilt don't help children -- they
destabilize the family. Remember... YOU are the parent!
- Spend as much time on your marriage, or yourself if you're single, than
you do with the children. Adult self-respect and fulfillment reassures the
- Expect your child to obey the RULES. Disobedience earns a stretch in
the Time-Out chair -- one minute for each child's year up to five. YOU are
in charge of family decisions.
- ROUTINES are important stabilizers.
Example: Hands are washed before eating. Nap time is directly after lunchtime.
- Teach your child about RESPONSIBILITY.
Example: Your toys must be picked up before the bedtime story.
- Teach decision-making skills. At the earliest age, allow your child to
make decisions within your parameters.
Example: Will you wear your green shirt or your blue one? Do you want hot
cereal or cold cereal for breakfast?
IMPORTANT - make sure the Child understands s/he must abide by (live with)
- Say no when you have to. Childhood frustration leads to adult
perseverance, the key to success. But be consistent -- those rules again!
And provide the reason.
- Less toys are better. Your child will learn to make choices, rather
than feeling overwhelmed, which leads to boredom. Toys that encourage
creativeness are best -- the ones that can be whatever your child wants it
to be -- the empty oatmeal box, the cereal box, the pan and lid, and
- Turn off the "boob" tube. It distracts your child's need for creativity
and train of thought. It becomes "white noise" over which everyone speaks.
- Take what you consider helpful from the "experts," than raise your child
your way and enjoy.
- My dear Grandma gave me only one piece of advice on raising children:
"Whatever you promise, good or bad, deliver!" She was right.