Guest Author - Cynthia Parker
Recently when I checked my site searches, I noticed that someone had performed a search on the phrase, “ideal parent.” I pondered the term for a few moments wondering whether they wanted to know if such existed or what the qualities of an ideal parent would be. I have no way of knowing their intent, but I can share my thoughts with you on the terms, “ideal parent.”
The “ideal parent” knows that they will never be perfect, and neither will their children.
The “ideal parent” knows that it is okay to admit their faults and they also know that they don’t have to over-apologize. They realize that they are only human.
The “ideal parent” knows that the “punishment should fit the crime” and that each child is different and responds differently to various styles of discipline. Finding the one that meets your child’s needs is the key.
The “ideal parent” listens as much as they talk. Communication is very important in child-raising. A parent must be available for conversations with their children and they must know how to talk to their children without alienating them. Let a child know that you are shocked and they probably will not return to you for many important conversations. Additionally, a parent must realize the importance of listening. When a child knows that you listen to what they say, they are more inclined to continue coming to you when they need to talk. After all, what is the point in talking if you are not being heard?
The “ideal parent” knows that the world is always changing and that their children live with different challenges than those in which the parent grew up.
The “ideal parent” has values and morals by which they firmly stand. They teach these values to their children. They are clear in their communications with their children about their expectations.
At the same time, the “ideal parent” knows that real life can sometimes interfere with expectations and that children often make mistakes. Prepare them for those possibilities with knowledge and concern. Let them know that there is no mistake they can make that will destroy your love for them.
The “ideal parent” knows the difference between guidelines and rules and how to use both. They set clear expectations and they do not sway. They know that being wishy-washy only confuses their children.
The “ideal parent” encourages their children to excel – in school, in sports, in their academic and extracurricular interests. They recognize their child(ren)s natural talents and encourage them. They provide nourishment not only for the body, but also for the mind and the spirit.
The “ideal parent” isn’t afraid to say, “No.” They understand that it is normal for their child to be angry when they are refused their request, but it is the parent’s job to insure the child’s safety and well-being.
The “ideal parent” does not fear the rejection or ridicule of other parents when they stand up for what they believe to be right. They are not trying to keep up with or pass the achievements of others. Children learn by example. The “ideal parent” knows that if they want their children to “be themselves,” they must follow the same advice.
The “ideal parent” is understanding, yet firm when their children question rules, authority and other concepts. Children need to explore the world in order to determine their own path in life. Some exploration is acceptable; some is not. A parent’s guidance will keep the child safe and secure in their world, while allowing them to grow. Being willing to consider ideas other than their own will also give the parent the opportunity to grow.
The “ideal parent” takes advantage of the news stories in their city, state, country and world to discuss issues, solutions and ideals with their children. We are flooded with a wealth of information on a daily basis. Take advantage of it for the benefit of you and your child(ren).
The “ideal parent” knows that there is no such thing as an Ideal Parent. But they do their very best anyway.