UNITED STATES—I’m only an ARMCHAIR WARRIOR, but these issues are crippling our communities, society, and culture.
I observed, studied, and learned from my mistakes. I’ve also been privy to the types of households I complain about, giving me a unique posteriori perspective that book knowledge will never be able to provide. Am I an expert? NOPE. But I’m sure going to take this opportunity to give my opinion anyway.
The premise of parenting should be as Albert Bandura’s Social Learning Theory states: children grow to display behaviors that are modeled after what they’ve OBSERVED.
Teachers across the country find themselves in a position where they have to teach children the simplest rights and wrongs, but when children go home the corrected behavior is not “maintained.”
Do as I say not as I do parenting doesn’t work, even if rationalized with “at least I’m a better parent than I had” mentality.
If you haven’t already messed up, read these 10 things that you can STOP from doing!
TEN. What’s funny and WHAT IS NOT?
We’ve all been around them… People who do something disgusting in public, and then laugh like an adolescent.
You can usually blame the ‘humor’ of parents or other major influences. Of course you can’t watch reruns of Beavis and Butthead while a baby is confined to a swing, and then wonder why the child acts like a farm animal.
Laughing at inappropriate behavior reinforces it. The child likes to hear you laugh and will do it again and again. No matter how adorable the baby looks after spitting food DO NOT LAUGH!
NINE. How to be Responsible.
Responsibility comes in different forms. Whether you are taking the initiative to fix a mailbox you accidentally ran over, or choosing between right and wrong. LITTLE EYES ARE WATCHING.
Here’s an example that shows how fast our society is deteriorating…
Ten years ago the grocery store had a sample tray. People took more than their share, so they added a “Free Sample: Take One!” sign. Many people, including parents with children, would take too many. Now they have to pay someone to hand out samples.
EIGHT. How to Lie and Malinger!
Merriam Webster defines malingering as “to pretend to be sick or injured in order to avoid doing work.”
Little ears are listening as you lie on the phone to your boss, spouse, or mother. All that matters is you justified lying for gain, therefore teaching if the reason is good, they are allowed to lie just as easily.
SEVEN. How we OUGHT to.
Sutherland’s differential association theory says people who are raised around deviants learn the behavior is normal, increasing susceptibility to deviance. What we do and how we live shows them how they “ought to.”
How your child treats you when you are the elder will depend on how you treated that child and how the child observed you treating others. They learn parenting habits the same way!
SIX. How to Emotionally React.
Research on grief has shown conclusively that a child will grow to display the same grieving process as a parent. It would be defective to believe children learn some emotional behaviors from parents, but not all.
FIVE. What to expect in the future.
We have this IDIOTIC notion that we can raise kids anyway we want, but they can still BE ALL THEY CAN BE when they turn 18.
Children are like smartphones that function with the APPS a parent installs. Sure, children can choose what road to take. But it is the parent that teaches how to read the road signs, including what roads the child OUGHT and OUGHT NOT take.
FOUR. Illogical Thought Processes.
Some believe in paying it forward when they’ve been lucky, others make a habit of getting drunk. Whatever habit you consistently display will become part of the “what I should do” or “what I can do” thinking process. Parents install the thought processes regarding everything and research is proving that children CAN inherit mental illnesses from a parent.
An example would be teaching a child that they will catch diseases by using public restrooms. They mature to fear using a bathroom in public. Of course you should promote the right way of using public restrooms and hygiene, IT IS a parent’s job, but installing FEAR isn’t. The illogical belief can now spark the creation of maladaptive behaviors, such as never straying far from home for fear of needing the toilet.
THREE. Learned Hate and Racism.
We know from research that racism is LEARNED. Studies have been published, and even CNN has proclaimed it. Racism is hate and hate is selectively taught. Until now we’ve embraced the right to parent and teach children as we see fit. Is this WHY we still have hate and racism?
TWO. Learned Helplessness.
Learned helplessness is taught within the home. When a child is experiencing or witnessing abuse, they learn what helplessness is: being powerless to help. If they do tell someone and nothing is done to help, it reinforces the helplessness and the next time someone abuses them they probably won’t tell anyone.
ONE. Teaching Children to HATE Themselves.
Worse than teaching children that they should hate other people? Teaching them to hate themselves. Parents have the ultimate influence in determining how a child thinks of themself and their worth in the world around them.
Verbal bullying and constant belittling, rejecting, or other emotionally abusive factors will work directly against what parents should be MANDATED to teach the child THEY CHOOSE to raise.
But don’t take my word for it, CLICK HERE for the 8 Golden Rules of Parenting.