Parenting and Cowards.
Cowards should not be parents. That’s because parenting is not for cowards.
A coward is a person who “lacks the courage to do or endure dangerous or unpleasant things.” Really now, can a person who does not have courage to endure unpleasant things be a parent?! Parenting requires endurance and it requires doing unpleasant things for the benefit of our kids Click To Tweet. That’s why parenting isn’t for cowards.
Parents who are Cowards
Parents who are cowards are identified by these characteristics:
- allows a child (or children) to set the tone for the day and tiptoes around that tone just to maintain peace
- caves in when a child pushes the limits, especially in the presence of other adults or kids who bleed sympathy for the child
- deliberately or overtly makes sure his child gets the best or “wins” at games, competitions, or parties because winning is more important than instilling character.
- has not set up parameters for what a child is or is not permitted to do or act, so it changes daily on the mood of the parent or the child
- ignores or pretends not to see or hear behavior that is wrong because dealing with it is too hard
- permits a child to be disrespectful to anyone because he doesn’t have a plan or doesn’t want the hassle of following through
- second-guesses himself when a child declares he is “not being fair!” and often changes course to prove to said child that he is fair
- wants to be his child’s friend and chooses friendship over discipline or consequences
The hard part of parenting
You know what I think is the hard part of parenting? Finding a plan and following through consistently. I’ve got some tips – not because I did it perfectly, but because I learned the hard way when I did it wrong.
- Be the parent. Every day. You are the one in charge. Your child might be funny and cute, but he’s the child. You are the parent. Don’t forget that, and don’t let your child forget it, either.
- Be a humble parent. Recognize when you’ve made mistakes, apologize, and change course when necessary. There is no patent on parenting.
- Make a conscious decision on which behaviors warrant discipline, and follow through. For us, it was the 3 Ds: disrespect, dishonesty, and disobedience.
- Recognize that “fair” is not “equal”. You don’t have to give the same punishment or consequence to each child.
- Know your child. Use that to your advantage and theirs. Use rewards and consequences based on your knowledge of your child.
- Be sure of yourself, then follow through. Otherwise, you will be swayed by the voices of your kids or other parents.
- Remain the parent. Do not try to be your child’s best friend.
You can do this. Don’t be a coward. Ask God for wisdom, for ideas, for humor – and stay the course. It will be worth it, some day.