Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Parent Misconceptions

After I became a mother, I realized a few key aspects of parenthood. I began to notice common misconceptions parents have about their relationships with their children. Many aspects of a parent/child relationship are often taken for granted. It can often be a one sided experience and go unnoticed by many parents.

One of the misconceptions many parents have regards a child's love for their parents. Often, parents assume their children are born loving them. However, this is not the case. Just because a child may share DNA, they do not come into this world loving their parents. A child has to be given a reason to love their parents. You can not expect a child to love you if you do not show them the utmost love, too. Love for someone, even a parent, has to be acquired overtime through kindness, acceptance, trust, and guidance. Your children have to be your number one priority and nothing less.

For this reason, I never let a moment slip by to tell my children I love them. They may even become annoyed at the fact I probably tell them no less than 10 times a day. I also take moments throughout the day to show my love for them in as many ways as I possibly can. I know love is a precious thing, and I will not do anything to lose the love of my children.

Another misconception parents have is that children are born to respect their parents, but this is not true either. Respect with children is a two way street, just like it is with adults. Respect for one another has to be earned, even in the case of a child and a parent. Not only will your child not respect you if you are not respectful to them, but think of what you are teaching them. Children learn how to act in society at home, usually during their first five years of life. For this reason, if a child has parents who don't respect them, in return, the child will have no respect for them either.

And, then there is trust. Parents assume their children trust them, but have you given them a reason to trust you? Trust is fragile, especially in the eyes' of children. One lie, broken promise, or wrong action slowly eats away at your child's trust for you. In our home, we expect our children to be honest with us, so we are 100 percent honest with them. They can ask us anything and know we will answer honestly in age appropriate terms. As a result, we've developed an extremely close relationship with our children. Our children can come to us for any reason. They know they are safe, and we are true to our word.

Although these are touchy subjects and may be a rude awakening for many people, it is important to know that giving a child life does not make a relationship between them unbreakable. You can not have a child and assume that they love you, respect you, and trust you from the moment they are born. I think too many parents take love, respect, and trust from their children for granted. I always keep these three things in the back of my head...always. I know a wrong step can cause damage to my relationship with my children and my children as a whole. And, I don't want to be responsible for that or have the guilt hanging over my head.

Remember, you are not better than your children. They deserve the exact same love, respect, and trust from you that you expect from them.

Originally published on Random Thoughts from a Tangled Mind

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