9 Parenting Mistakes That Can Ruin a Child’s Future
Everyone makes mistakes when raising children. Even when we become adults, we are not perfect and we can’t always understand what our actions look like from the outside and how they will affect future generations. But some methods of raising children actually do more harm than good.
Bright Side decided to find out about the common mistakes parents often make and what they can lead to.
1. Punishing children in front of others
Sometimes, mothers and fathers get mad, they yell, and even punish their children in front of other people. In moments like these, they’re not thinking about the others. But children actually care about the opinion of the people around them. And public shaming undermines children’s self-confidence. It makes them feel really ashamed and it is hard for them to shake it off.
2. Influence from the past
The things that happen in our childhood leave an imprint on what kind of parents we will be. But it doesn’t mean that we are doomed to repeat our fathers’ and mothers’ mistakes. It is important to learn from their mistakes and try to shield the future generations from these negative emotions.
For example, we now know today that corporal punishment only has negative consequences. But many modern parents still resort to this kind of punishment and try to justify their actions by saying that their parents did it to them. We should not try to excuse our wrongdoing by saying, “My father did this, so I’ll do it too.” Instead, we should try to be the people who break the cycle.
3. Being too self-restrained
If we don’t hug our children often and don’t tell them that we love them, they might become emotionally isolated from the family. When we don’t listen to their feelings and opinions or when we are indifferent, it is very likely that our kids will act the same way with other people. It might be hard for them to be intimate with someone, trust other people, make friends, or start a family.
4. Bad habits
Parents are the role models for their children. And there is a strong connection between the habits of mothers and extra weight in their children. For women who try to have a healthy lifestyle, the risk of obesity in their children is 75% lower. Researchers claim that good habits, that have a positive influence on kids, are having a healthy diet, regular exercise, not smoking, and not drinking or drinking very little alcohol.
Also, young children are 30% less likely to be obese if their fathers spend a lot of time playing with them.
Our old grudges against our mothers and fathers can lead to a complete aversion to their parenting methods. Even when it comes to the things they did right. As a result, when we start our own families, we might push it too far when trying to do things differently.
For example, if our parents were too authoritarian, we might give too much freedom to our children. And this overcompensation cannot be good for children: they might feel abandoned and not needed.
6. Permissiveness or overprotection
Very often, parents think that their sons and daughters are special and unique and they try to do the best they can. But for the rest of the world, they are just children. And if they get used to permissiveness, they might grow up to be selfish people with an unrealistic sense of entitlement, who are hard to communicate with.
Uncontrollable children will have a lot of disappointment in their lives outside of the home and they won’t have any idea of how to deal with it. At the same time, being too overprotective might make your children easily scared, so they will be afraid of taking any responsibility or going outside of their comfort zone — like meeting someone new or starting a business.
7. Destruction of trust
There have to be certain rules concerning behavior, but children should still understand that they can trust their relatives. And children’s trust (especially teenagers’) is very easy to lose if parents lose control of their emotions and scare them. This might lead to losing their emotional connection with the family and not feeling protected.
Children develop better and they become healthy adults when their families are a safe island that they can venture out to explore the world from.
8. Aggressive behavior
Children learn how to deal with problems by watching their parents when they have to deal with difficulties. Sometimes, it is the children that cause this trouble. And being rude to them or expressing negative emotions toward them at an early age can lead to problems with anger management.
9. Escaping from their problems
One of the best ways to “end” a problem is to walk away and forget about it. But that doesn’t mean that things will just resolve on their own, like many adults believe. After a serious fight between parents and children, you have to try and fix the situation — restore the trust.
In order to do this, you have to calm down and speak as equals, showing respect to your child. In the beginning, hear them out to let them know that you are interested in how they feel and try to see the problem from their perspective. Then, talk about your feelings, explain the reason why you got angry, and apologize. This is a way to show a child that you are not a new enemy and that you can be trusted again.
Have you learned anything new about raising children? Have you made any of these mistakes? What did you do to fix them? Tell us in the comment section below.
Illustrated by Igor Polushin for BrightSide.me