Most all people could agree that there are different kinds of parents and varying parenting approaches. While some may be very strict and attempt control of every aspect in their child’s life, others could rely on a much more relaxed avenue in allowing their child to make their own decisions and inversely, mistakes. Beyond the divergent “niches”, there is one thing that is certain, a vast amount of parents want to do what is best for their kids.
Regrettably, some parents fall short in being the support or example their child may need. Of course, all parents will make mistakes from time to time. There are no right or wrong ways to raise a young one, but some mistakes could be of larger/lesser detriment than others. Consequently, creating more or less scarring within the child’s physical, psychological, and emotional development.
Here are 13 common errors in parenting, maybe errors made in raising you. If you are a parent, these are 13 behaviors to avoid due to the toxic upbringing of your child/children:
1. FAILING TO CREATE A SAFE, SECURE AND SUPPORTIVE ENVIRONMENT.
Some parents follow the belief that giving “Tough Love” teaches the adolescent what the “real” world has become. While this might make the child independent, it may also leave him or her with commitment issues and leave them without close relationships later in their life. When it comes down to it, we all need love and affection. We need to have the comfort and security that shows, no matter what is said or done, our parents love us unconditionally.
In that secure nature, we have courage to attempt new things and understand who we truly are (by learning from our mistakes). “Tough Love” is not wrong, though it cannot be the sole approach.
2. CRITICIZING THEIR CHILD’S EVERY CHOICE.
All the parent wants, is what is best for their kid. In telling them they are always wrong is unhealthy and toxic. Negativity, such as this could leave the child without, even a modicum of confidence and motivation to go experience new things. It is normal for humans to make mistakes and to learn from them, especially in youth, and parents should understand that. Being overly judgmental is not an efficient path to trek. Parents should work to find balance between positive and negative criticism and in that encourage and uplift their children, rather than belittling and tearing them down.
3. DEMANDING ALL THE ATTENTION.
Toxic parents tend to think because they have spent so much time and energy on them, their children now owe them something. They lack the understanding that their child has his/her own life and may not always be available for their personal needs. One of the best thing for parents to do is to cultivate room, or space, for their child to grow and then they will want to reach out to their parents themselves. Relationships can not be forced, even those between parents and their offspring.
4. MAKING HURTFUL JOKES.
This is quite similar to emotionally abusive relationships, where one partner demeans the other but does it with a smile on their face. “Bullying” children and pointing out each minute thing they do wrong is destructive to youths confidence and self-love. With that said, as a parent never mock the way your child looks or behaves, when valid concern arises talk to your kid privately and most importantly, maturely.
5. BLAMING IT ALL ON THE KID.
There are those that accuse their children of the terrible ways they treat them. In the case of your parents having been emotionally/physically abusive, it was not and is not your fault, most definitely if they made you believe so. Most of us look up to our parents as heroes or such, and believe most every word they say, blame or accusations might be very damaging to a kid.
In thinking that you deserved all the insults and hits, you doubt your value as a person, as a glorious human being. The possibility that you will be in an abusive relationship later in life is greater, because you think that behavior is normal and you do not deserve anything better.
6. NOT ALLOWING TO EXPRESS THOUGHTS AND EMOTIONS.
All of us experience good and bad times. It is important to talk through all kinds of feelings and reject bottling negative emotions inside. These types of conversations could prevent mental and physical illnesses. You can greatly injure development of your child with the “Boys Don’t Cry” mentality, crying or showing emotions creates empathy, compassion, and love in the child’s future. Teaching our youth to hold in emotions can lead to various different problems, be it Depression, Loneliness, etc.
Put simply, if you are a parent, encourage your tiny human to speak up and out about their feelings.
7. BEING SCARY OR FRIGHTENING.
To some level, structure and discipline are keynote, that being said, your child should never be afraid of you. If you raise your child in an environment where fear, anger, blame, resentment, etc. are spread and shared as easy as the common flu, then they become scared to come to you about their problems and/or feelings. This will affect them mostly in their later years, and they may keep their distance from you for the rest of your life.
Respecting your parents and being fearful of them, are two completely different things. It is pertinent to create a secure and loving environment, to make your kid feel that whatever may come, they can always talk with you and turn to you for advice.
8. THINKING ONLY ABOUT THEMSELVES.
All parents should take into consideration their child’s thoughts and opinions. Of course, parents tend to be wiser and more experienced, and may know what is best (most of the time), but it is important to include the whole family in decision-making processes. Whether it is where to go for dinner or a vacation, your child should have some level of input on the matter. If you were to choose the opposite of their input, make sure to explain to them calmly and understandably why you chose differently.
9. WANTING TO FULFILL THEIR DREAMS THROUGH THEIR KID.
It is extremely selfish to make your child do things you wanted to do as a kid, when it runs against their own passions and dreams. For example, do not force upon your child the pressures and goals within a sport that you once had when in their position. Do not make them study into a profession in which you were successful, in thinking they may achieve much more than you did. This vicarious nature is more than toxic to not only the growth of the child, who has their individual thoughts, ideas, passions, and goals.
Let them make their own decisions on life and happiness, for it is theirs, we as parents, are only care-takers and guiding examples for one or a few of life’s wonderful opportunities and treasures.
10. CONTROLLING THE CHILD WITH MONEY AND GUILT.
Parents should not expect anything in return when they offer their child gifts and money. As parents, do not attempt to buy your children’s love and respect. Earn it another way, maybe through love, compassion and understanding. Inversely, don’t strive to right your wrongs through the showering of material possessions. The importance to admittance of being wrong and apologizing is paramount, because our actions carry much more weight than words.
11. GIVING THE “SILENT TREATMENT”
Remind me, which of you is the child?? The childish and ignorant solution to a problem or argument is keeping your mouth shut. As with various other relationships, communication is the key to prosperous growth, so you must talk things through. This passive-aggressive behavior only teaches the child unhealthy ways of communicating, and may cause a very egocentric “above all others’ attitude.
12. IGNORING BOUNDARIES OR PERSONAL SPACE.
As a parent, if you want to earn the respect of your child, then you must reciprocally give respect first. This means following the boundaries and agreements you make, as well. As a parent, if you are never on time, how could you expect your child to be? With that, allow space and privacy for your child to be able to learn and grow into their own wonderful identity. It is as easy as, knocking before entering their room, especially when dealing with teenagers, or not interrupting them when they are speaking with you.
13. MAKING THEIR KIDS RESPONSIBLE FOR PERSONAL HAPPINESS.
This goes to be said for anyone, not just with your children. Do not be one of those parents who only talk about how much they have sacrificed for their children, or how you could have had such a “bigger, better, happier” life if you weren’t too busy caring for and raising them. Whether you consciously chose to or not, becoming a parent was your choice, your decision and responsibility, you cannot expect your kid to forget about their own feelings and life decisions and only support, entertain, or serve you. Don’t become a burden in their eyes, because they won’t have that respect for you, that you yearn for so ferociously, and they won’t enjoy or want to spend time with you.
Remember, we are all responsible for our own happiness. If you are not happy, do something about it, and don’t blame your child’s existence for your personal self-worth.
There are definite ways of raising your children that can be quite poisonous and negative. These methods could easily leave emotional wounds and gashes in their psyche, which might deter them from future happiness and/or relationships. Be the best parent you can be, give your child love and a secure home environment, let them grow to be the beautiful people they are by offering respect and personal space. Talk to them, I mean, really talk to them about the things that really matter in life, and especially their feelings, and emotions, but by no means do not become obsessive over them. You had to forge your own path through life and make decisions/mistakes for you to become the person you are today, give them the same opportunity. Give endless love and caring as to show them you will always be there to support them no matter what happens, and they in turn, will be there to give and do just the same.
by. Corban R. Fleming