Parenting-striking the right balance

If you have been attending ‘What kind of parent are you?’ quizzes, you are like most parents who are not sure if they are doing right by their children. Parenting can sometimes be such a difficult balancing act that you dont seem to know whether you are doing it right.

Friends or parents?

Kids want democracy and to be treated as equals. But they still need to accept parental authority. Striking the balance

perfectly is not easy. A child needs to understand that parents can be fun, but at the same time authority figures to look up to.

Parents who make an effort to be their childrens friends become better listeners and can become sensitive to their childrens needs,” remarks Sonali Ghosh, students counselor.

All parents dream of topping their childrens list of friends. They may top the list during the younger years but as a child grows, parents popularity levels drop. To scramble back to the top, some parents over-indulge children, avoid correcting them, beg and plead for cooperation and even reward mistakes.

Do you know your child?

You may think that you know your kindergartener well, but what if you caught him playing doctor with his best friend? Would you know this phase that your child is passing through, is one of curiousity that almost every child has, or would you cringe with embarrassment and shame?” asks Dr. Pooja Krishnan. Sometimes, just knowing what to expect from children helps. Thats where parenting books and websites come in. Knowledge that hundreds of parents have faced the same issue is reassuring. We dont realise just how many parents go through almo

st the same problems until we about them.

Expectations vs. reality

A parent with a wellbehaved eight-year-old may subconsciously expect the same from her five-year-old without acknowledging the difference.

Our expectations of our children are also based on own childhood experiences attitudes. Acknowledging that our children belong to a different generation with a whole new set of attitudes will make it easier to accept them and bring out the best in them.

Knowing your child

Taking time to observe your childrens behaviour and reactions to different situations will help to know them better.

Every child needs to handled differently, and trying to manage siblings the same way seldom works. If one sibling is good with household chores, you don have to force the other one to do the same. He/she can be given other comfortable tasks. In an attempt to be ‘fair, parents often end up ignoring age differences and frustrate children.

At the end of the day, giving time and attention to kids is the surest way of figuring out how to strike the right balance — and being best parent you can be. No parent is perfect, but a big dollop of love can cover many mistakes.

– Anitha Bennett

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