A reader of ours brought a veritable treasure trove of information on parenting to our attention. Visiting the U.S. News & World Report web site for parenting articles hasn’t really entered my mind but when we got an e-mail from Whitney Akers from the said web site, I decided to take a look. What did I find? TONS of material for every parent out there!
I was particularly intrigued by an article by Nancy Schutte entitled Good Parents, Bad Results. I have seen this happen one time too many and even the thought of my children growing up to be imbalanced or maladjusted despite my best intentions scare me out of my wits! So where do parents go wrong? The article presents 8 scientific facts to help explain the problem. Let’s go over them together shall we?
Failure to set limits.
It would be hard to find a parent who doesn’t agree that setting and enforcing rules are an essential part of the job description. Yet faced with whining, pouting, and tantrums, many parents cave. “The limited time you have with your kids, you want to make it ideal for them,” says Forehand, a professor of psychology at the University of Vermont whose evidence-based program is outlined in his book. “As a result, we end up overindulging our kids.”
Oh boy, isn’t this true! We do have certain limits in our minds. We even tell our children about these limits. At the mall, for example, we say you can buy one new game for your Gameboy. Or, you can play in the arcade for 30 minutes. We KNOW that we are going to enforce these limits. Yet when those cute little eyes plead us for another game or just 30 more minutes, we find it easy to give in at times, don’t we?
The bottom line? Permissiveness does not really help our kids at all. We need to set limits and enforce them. Let’s look at the other areas in the next posts.