The Positive Network http://positively-positive.ning.

com Positive Parenting Guidelines all Children All Ages We are all different so what worked for me may not work for you, as a parent you must do what feels right for you and your child/children, the following may give you some ideas, if nothing else . Most if not all adults will one day become a Parent, with this role comes much pleasure and in same token much stress and its not easy, I personally found that by giving my child the right to be himself, I was rewarded with a fine specimen of a Son, I taught him from an early age that no matter what choices he made in his life he was to expect to be held accountable for them and the outcome of them. I allowed him the right to his opinion at an early age, or as soon as he was able to understand what this would mean, with the knowledge that whatever he chose he was to also respect that others would also have an opinion and if that opinion didnt match his own that didnt mean he was right and the other person wrong, just that they each viewed the topic in their own individual way . I taught him not to argue a point in order to prove himself right, theres nothing to be gained from this whether a child or adult. I taught him that no matter how smart or clever he may think himself there would always be someone smarter around the corner so not to let his head swell, because pride comes before a fall. Plus no one likes a smart asse. I taught him he was not better than anyone else just an equal,that no one was above or below him in their status in this world and that he was equal to all other human beings and as such he too was worthy of being treated with respect, and if at anytime he felt he wasnt being treated fairly he should politely ask who ever was being disrespectful towards him why they were doing so and to request that they stop doing so, if this had no effect then he was entitled to walk away from the person, and disassociate himself from them in the future. Obviously this excluded Authority Figures, such as Police or anyone of an official standing. I taught him that boys dont hit girls and girls dont hit boys, that fighting proves nothing only that in doing this means he had lost control, and that to lose control isnt a thing one wants. I taught him the only person he could be in control of at any time ever was himself, that he had no right to try to control anyone else, that each person owns their own life and no one elses. I taught him violence was for weak people, that in walking away he would be the stronger, for not succumbing to violence, and that violence takes no brain cells but walking away does take strength of character. I taught him to use manners at all times with all people young or old, that saying Please and Thank You would take him further in life than being ignorant ever would. I taught him that its OK to fail, that it wouldnt mean he was anything less than human, and that if one fails its not the end of the world, he could always try again, for as many times as he needed, he would still be loved and respected by myself no matter what. That winning isnt everything. I told him I loved him daily. I praised his achievements and helped him through his non achievements, with encouragement. I never spoke of him in a derogatory way to anyone whether within his earshot or not, I knew from my own childhood how destructive that could be to his self esteem, and how he would interact as an adult. I taught him that with becoming an adult he would have a whole new set of rules to learn. He would need to learn to accept others as they were for what they were no matter what that was, and he was

never to look down on anyone. I taught him that the legal age for sex is there as a guideline and if he indulged before he reached that age, then he had to accept that he would be responsible for any offspring he may father and that being underage wouldnt get him off the hook, and to consider that if he became a teen parent he would not only be responsible for his own life but that of his child as well, and that this would then cut short the best years of his life, and if he accepted this then go ahead, but dont come to me for babysitting, he would be responsible for child care not me. He would also be expected to support any child he fathered. I ensured I had plenty of contraceptives available to him in order to prevent unplanned parenting and also to protect him from STDs etc. I ensured he knew all about the unglamourous side of sex, that indulging under age wasnt big or clever and if he indulged to only do so if he felt thats what he wanted, not to do it to keep in with his friends or be one of the boys, and to talk about any girls he did sleep with later wasnt big or clever either. I never smacked him, although if I had felt the need to do so I wouldve, I dont think a tap on the back of the hand to a baby about to put its finger say into an electrical socket or the bars of a heater will harm them, especially when theyre too young for you to explain the danger to them. I tried to make time for him when he wanted me for something or another, although I accept that it isnt always the most ideal moment for some Mothers to do this, in that case I would make time as soon as was convenient, but I would also tell the child why I couldnt spend time at that precise moment. I would never make a promise to a child and then break it, this teaches them that people cannot be relied upon, and also it can teach them to tell you lies. I would also never send a child to his room for say punishment, this teaches them that the bedroom is a form of punishment. If possible always tell your child why you are punishing him/her, it may not be easy but if they are aware of what theyve done wrong and why it is a punishable offence theyll less likely rebel against you later. Set ground rules when theyre young and stick to them, it confuses a child if you say no one day and yes the next, children need consistency, and rules, and boundaries. Never violate your childs right to privacy. Children also thrive in a routine environment, they know where they stand as do other family members. Never threaten your children with " wait till your father gets home" this is very damaging. It instills fear into them and fearful children become dysfunctional and fearful adults. If you and the father/mother separate/divorce dont stop the other parent having access, not only is it a free period for you to enjoy some alone time, the children are entitled to 2 parents, dont inflict your hostility of the ex partner onto the children, they have a different relationship with your ex to what you had, theirs is of parent/ child. Please dont deprive them of the other parent youll only be helping to make their futures dysfunctional, and thats not fair, It also shows you as being an immature adult, something your children will mirror when they too venture out into the world. Children become what they see when growing up. Also by not interfereing with your children having visits with their Father/Mother you will be being a positive and productive parent, and showing that you are also mature in how you are dealing with your relationship with their Father/Mother, this will help them immensely in dealing with the separation and will also help them deal with any feelings of guilt they may have over the separation, because its true when parents separate many children feel they are to blame.

Another thing I always made a point of doing was to let my Son know that he could tell me anything, no matter what it was, I would listen and not reproach him, I would try to advise him or show him an alternative way of dealing with any problems he may have, and that no matter what I would always be there for him at anytime any day, whether back then or in the future and this still holds to this day and everyday for the rest of my life, Ill always be his Mother and I take that role very seriously, and as I wanted my Son to become a good parent himself then I needed to lead by example, I have made mistakes, I admit that, I have always tried to do what I felt was right, and constructive for my Sons well being and his outlook on life and how he would interact with other human beings. I taught him to respect Authority, the Police or offical representatives, and that should he ever have any altercations with them to try to remain calm and polite regardless of how he may feel he may be justified in being inpolite, or that maybe he was being hassled. I taught him that there is a wrong and right way of dealing with such ocassions, and for him to lose his cool at such time would not do him any good. I taught him to stick to his principles and moral standards, that becoming a rebel would not serve any purpose and could actually make waves for him in his life and how he progressed, that whilst he should avoid becoming a yes Man there is a way of going about things that is productive, and in same token a way that would be destructive, he was to make the choice of what he did about this, and choose his own destiny, but whatever way he chose he would have to be aware of his being the only person responsible for the outcome. I taught him that if he were to become involved with a female then he should remain true to her or each one for as long as they were in a relationship, that whilst it may appear clever to play the field that it wasnt clever it was disrespectful of the person whom he was in a relationship with, plus he could catch something nasty and pass it on, and he didnt have the right to put another person at risk for his own foolhardy actions. If he wanted to risk his own health that was his choice, but only his own health no one elses. I also told him when he could understand that whatever his sexual orientation be it hetrosexual or homosexual that I would at no time judge him for his preference, I hoped he would become hetrosexual but if not I would still love him and respect him and his choice of partner, however I wouldnt condone his lifestyle if he were to be promiscuous . I taught my son to be aware of him having to work for a living, that if he wanted the finer things in life then he would need to work to pay for them that theres no such thing as a free lunch, and that if something seemed too good to be true it probably was, I taught him that once or if he got married then he would become responsible for his wife and any children, that they would then become his family and should at all times take precedence in terms of priority, and that all others including myself were to be secondary in his loyalites and support, that it was his place to provide a secure and loving environment for his family at all times, and never to take a risk that may put them in any jeopardy or risk of harm. I taught him that no matter what he should at all times aspire to be honest and law abiding, not to take unnecessary risks, not to steal or try to deceive anyone out of their property or assets, not to con anyone, or try to take what wasnt his, through any form of trickery, I of course hoped he wouldnt turn to a life of crime but I was also realistic enough to know that not everyone can resist temptation. I also accepted that whatever he became would be a direct reflection of what he had seen during his life growing up.

I taught him not to be a hypocrite, and to practice what he preached, not to ever hit his wife or children, and if he ever felt himself losing his control in this area he should go for a walk do something anything but never give into any urges to physically or mentally harm another. No matter what the provocation. If he gave into any urge of this nature, he would lose all respect for himself and others would then live in fear of him, which in turn he didnt have the right to inflict that upon another. I would also not condone his turning violent. I also taught him that until the age of 18 he was under my care so would be expected to live by my rules, and should he break them expect to be chastised, no matter how big he was at the time, I also had him tidy his own room, put things away after he finished with them, I taught him how to cook, and how to load a washing machine and how to peg out laundry, that he was to pick his clothes up off the floor and put them in the wash or hang them up, that money doesnt grow on trees, and that sometimes he would have to wait for certain things, and that as he got older he would be expected to contribute towards the housekeeping money, because feeding a grown man isnt as cheap as feeding a boy. Of course I only ever charged him a small sum for this, but it did him no harm to put towards his upkeep. It taught him to expect to have to pay his way in life. In same way if he broke something that wasnt his he was expected to replace it. It taught him to respect other peoples possessions. I wasnt soft and I wasnt too strict either, or I dont think I was, I hoped to show my Son how to live in this world as a worthwhile adult and husband and parent, he seems to be doing just fine, I guess I got it right then. However I also accept that we are all going to raise our children in our own way, I hope whats written here can be of use for you, as ideas or to implement for your childrens upbringing. M.Pike� The Positive Network Vast collection of free resources for anyone who wants to become more positive. December 2009 �

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