Basic Elements of Parenting: Getting Started!
By Pauline El Kallassi Mansour | 26 Jul 2013 | PARENTING
There is no one perfect way of parenting. There are many methods that parents resort to or try to implement in their house. However, the most important criterion for healthy parenting is for parents to be in touch with how they feel within themselves. Parents need to be aware of how they feel as an adult person.

Sometimes, parents try to provide for their children conditions that are totally different from their own childhood and thus they compensate by doing more.  Parents need to take care not to project their negative experiences on their child.

There are 3 basic elements for healthy parenting: love, protection and structure.

 From the moment the child is conceived in the mothers’ womb and throughout all his life, love is crucial in developing child’s sense of security.  Structure is about setting limits which serve to protect the child. Some parents are afraid to set limits because they do not want their children to be upset with them. Children who are raised up without structure or limits are given the message that they can always have it their way. 

In every family there are 3 basic human levels: adult’s level, parental level, children’s level

It is very dangerous for parents to treat children as their best friends. When parents confide their secrets to their kids; they are somehow making them responsible of their emotional well-being. The message that the child internalizes is that he should make his parent happy.  Consequently, the child is brought to the adult/parental level; thus it becomes more difficult to set limits.

A child’s responsibility is tailored according to his age but it should never be to take care of his parents or to make them happy since it is a heavy burden to carry. In this case, parents would have violated the protection element of parenting. Whenever the parent is stressed out, angry or tired from work or adult issues, the child will feel guilty and responsible for how his parent is feeling.

It is very important for parents to enjoy themselves as adults. Some parents get over-involved with their kid because they don’t know how to have leisure time on their own and have fun as adults irrespective of their children.  As a result, they rob their children from the right of living a normal childhood, and from the right of being a child no matter what is happening in the parent’s life.

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