More positive parenting thoughts...for the single parent
Give yourself a pat on the back. By working on your positive parenting plan, you are taking an active role in your child's future development...That is HUGE!
Here are some more thoughts and strategies to consider.
You can only be one parent
You are one parent…and you are a good parent!
Do the best you can, as yourself.
Take care of yourself
We often take better care of our children than we do ourselves. It may seem like the natural choice – to give them the better chance. However, if you are constantly stressed out, it is difficult to really enjoy time with your kids.
So, take a deep breath.
Deal with your emotional baggage…
Up To Parents has a free guide to help you.
Go out with your friends.
Sit outside with a glass of wine after the kids go to bed…
Do whatever you need to do to unwind at the end of the day, so you and your children can enjoy your time together.
Listen to your children
Do you remember what it is like to be a kid? People don’t listen…You don’t get what you want…Other kids pick on you…Your body is changing and you don’t always know what to do with it!
When your kids ask to talk to you, sit down and take the time to listen…without multi-tasking. Listening shows interest and helps build trust. If you really listen, even to the small things…the every day things…it makes it easier for them to come to you for the big stuff.
Let your kids be kids
No matter how old your child is, they should be your child – NOT your friend. If you need to talk about your fears, anger, or you new dating life, call one of your friends.
Give your kids responsibility
I have a two year old…so responsibility means something else in my house…like throwing away a diaper, putting her own shoes on, placing her clothes in the dirty clothes.
Every child needs responsibility. When your kids feel like they contribute to the family there is a sense of accomplishment and pride. And when you show your appreciation, they feel valued. Give the gift of responsibility…It all builds self esteem.
Consistency is key – from routines to discipline
Have you ever watched Nanny 911? Sometimes, I am blown away at what some parents accept from temper tantrums to fights. I’m blown away. Then, Joe shows the parents how to use the ‘naughty chair’. There is a huge stand-off the first time that the children are disciplined. Then it gets easier, because the kids know what to expect.
If you can set the expectations up during your daily routine, you can avoid the naughty chair…The trick is to maintain consistent rules with any co-parent. How can you work through your relationship, for your child’s best interest?
Keep your promises
Don’t make promises that you can’t keep. Consistently keeping your promises shows your child that they are important to you. You may think they forgot about it, but kids are like elephants…they never forget.
Don’t give up
If you are separated by distance or custody arrangements, you can still maintain an active role in your child’s life. Telephone calls, photo albums and shared memories can help. Be creative…share pictures and stories…and stay involved.
They are watching you…in everything you do!
Ok…no hokey affirmations here!
I had a girlfriend Jessie who had a 5-year old daughter Anna. One day Anna wanted to go outside, but Jessie said no.
Anna replied with “Get the F--k out of my way B--ch!”
If you knew Jessie, then you would know that she had a habit of driving fast…and swearing at anyone who got in her way. Guess who was watching from the back seat?
I can still see the shocked look on Jessie’s face as she told me the story…I laughed so hard I had tears rolling down my face…Jessie didn’t get it.
Your kids see how you handle yourself during the day. How do you want them to see you?
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