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how you parent.
you concerned about your parenting skills? If so, there are things you can
skills are generally learned through our early life experiences with our
own caregivers. The process is called “role modeling”. In most
instances the role model is mom and dad, but in many other instances, this
could be a grandparent, foster parent, friend of the family or other
guardian. Throughout these early life experiences most persons learn
healthy and adaptive ways to raise children. However, for some, their own
upbringing may have included issues arising out of violence, abuse,
neglect or other forms of dysfunction that interfere with their own
ability to parent today.
poor experiences from one’s past, it can be a challenge for some persons
to parent in such a way so as not to re-create the familiar. In other
words, it can be difficult to parent differently from how you were
parented so what happened to you doesn’t happen to your children. Some
persons who have had poor childhood experiences are concerned about their
parenting skills. Even some persons with good childhood experiences have
road to better parenting or parenting differently from what you
experienced begins with the process of self-discovery. If in your past,
you had experiences related to abuse, violence, neglect or other forms of
family dysfunction or you are just concerned, consider consulting a social
worker or finding books pertaining to your childhood experience to learn
how your early experiences can affect adult life and your parenting.
Talking with a social worker or reading books helps to hold a mirror to
oneself to more fully and deeply examine where we come from to determine
who we are and how we act.
this deeper understanding of our self, we are then better equipped to
recognize how what we learned may affect our current parenting behaviour.
Then we are able to contrast our behaviour with what children really need
for healthy development. If there is a discrepancy between what we now
realize we are doing and what is actually best for children, there are
steps we can take to improve matters.
next steps involve shedding the old patterns of parenting behaviours in
favour of adopting new parenting skills. Even though we may not like our
past experiences, they are familiar and in a sense, comfortable. As such
we need reminders, support and information both for what not to do but
also for help with what to do. Strategies to help be a better parent can
come in several different forms and include everything from reading books,
to notes on the refrigerator door, to counseling, to support groups, to
the way, you may want to consider adopting a new role model. If your role
models weren’t healthy, think of someone else, whose parenting abilities
you admire. This could be a friend’s parent, a fictional character from
a book or even a television personality. The objective here is to pick
someone who you know parents well. Then, when you are stuck and wonder
what to do, you can think of what that person would do in your situation.
This is a nice way to take care of yourself and your children.
your role model and how you want to parent to be the kind of parent your
child would choose.
Direnfeld, MSW, RSW
For information on Direnfeld's book, Raising Kids Without Raising Cane, click here.
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