Hey Hotties! this month I am letting a few of the kids I mentor take the reigns on the blog. I asked them for things they wanted to discuss and they came through with some stuff I am sure will get parents thinking. To protect their privacy they are writing anonymously. Hoping these topics will spark conversation or not in the case of this topic in your home.
As a teen growing up right now, I’ve come to find that there are many flaws in the way some adults choose to raise their children (no offense). So just to add in my opinions from personal experience and the voice of most of us “children”, here is
“Things I Wish Parents Knew”
This is the first and overall most important thing when it comes to parenting, and all relationships really. Communication is one of the most important factors in creating a bond with your child. If you expect anything from your child, talk to them. Establish this bond at a young age. Talk to them through their problems! Teach them life lessons with explanations and stories! Trust me, it helps build the biggest bond and sense of trust you could ever have. It also makes them so much more comfortable with you and the thought of talking with you, which will come in handy when they’re older!
Also, please try not to yell. It just destroys that trust that you worked hard to build up, and makes them not want to talk to you. It can also cause them to be sneakier and hide things from you. Really, it causes more problems than it solves. If you need to teach them a lesson, talk to them.
Your child should not be afraid of you!!
- Yes, it is serious
This is another important one. Parents seem to forget that their child is a completely different person with their own feelings and opinions. They will not be the same as yours. If your child is going through something, or they come to you with a problem, don’t belittle them. They are not overreacting, and just because you don’t care doesn’t mean they won’t. Doing this will not only break trust, but it will cause your child to feel unimportant, and make them feel terrible whenever they get upset over things because it’s “not a big deal”, which can lead to repression. Even if you don’t feel the same way about a situation as your child, help them. Calm them down, and talk them through their problem. It helps a lot.
- The “Rebellious” Phase
Hi yes, don’t be a helicopter parent. Trust your child. If you have no trust in your child, monitor their actions, set them up with unrealistic expectations, and are constantly on their case, they won’t trust you. Actually, studies show that being too strict of a parent will cause you to raise sneakier, more rebellious children. Sure, a lot of kids go through that “break the rules” phase, but as long as your patient with them, it goes away real quick.
- Physical Discipline
Don’t do it. There is no need. This goes all the way back to the communication point. If there is a problem, talk to your child. Explain to them what’s wrong, why it’s bad, and what you both can do to fix it. Hitting and beating on your child as a form of “discipline” will do nothing but cause your child to fear you, and that should never happen. They will fear you, and fear ever messing something up or making mistakes, which will make them very self-critical. It will hurt their mental health.
I will say it again: Your child should not be afraid of you.
- Mental Health
Care about it. It may not have been a part of your life when you were younger, but nowadays, it is. Mental health affects everything in your child; the way they think, act and feel. It is important. If your child feels something is wrong in the head, listen to them!! Take them to a hospital, get them diagnosed. Don’t make them feel like their feelings are weird and unnatural, and don’t ignore it. Also, let them have mental health days! It helps a lot. You want to see your child grow up, right? Listen to them! Establish these healthy conversations and coping mechanisms.
This goes for the kids without mental illnesses too! Their mental health is just as important! It is very easy for things like this to develop, and even if they don’t, you should care about your child’s health. Being in a bad place mentally can affect everything they do in life. Please help them through their hard times. I find that therapy works very well for many people and can help establish healthy coping mechanisms. And before people complain let me state one important fact:
There does not have to be anything wrong with you for you to go to therapy.
- Don’t Punish The Behavior You Want To See
Most people will not understand what this means, so let me provide an example. There was a girl, who didn’t feel comfortable socializing with many people, and wasn’t comfortable around her family that much. So, naturally, she stayed in her room most of the time. One day, however, she felt good enough to come out of her room and spend time with her family for a bit. Her family mocked her; joking about her finally coming out, and taking jabs at her. This made her uncomfortable and made her feel terrible, even if it was just “jokes”. Soon enough, she returned back to her room never to be seen again.
If your child is doing something you see as positive of their own accord, do not mock them for it. It hurts. Don’t make them feel inhuman or stupid for liking certain things.
Don’t punish the behavior you want to see.
This is seen as quite the…controversial subject I suppose? But in actuality, it’s really simple. Accept them. Love them for who they are. It’s not that hard.
If your child comes out to you, it most likely means they trust you enough to share that part of themselves, or they are quite comfortable with you. Don’t break that trust. It shouldn’t be that hard to love your child unconditionally. If you didn’t plan on doing that, you shouldn’t have had a child.
Of course, we don’t expect you to be perfect. It is perfectly fine if you struggle with things, whether that’s names, pronouns, or even acceptance in general. What matters is that you put in the work. Try your best to use their name and pronouns, ask them for explanations about the different sexualities, take an interest in them! You don’t have to make it your whole life of course, it’s not a personality trait. But don’t make them feel inhuman for who they love, if they feel romantic attraction at all. Its not stupid, they’re not too young, its not a phase. And if it is, then let that be okay! Kids can experiment, they have a lot of years ahead of them to figure out who they are.
Love them, respect them. They need it.
I’m just going to say this now: Respect is a two way street. If you want your child to respect you, then respect them. It doesn’t matter that you’re the parent, you only get respect when you deserve it. Respect their feelings, space, and boundaries. It’s really simple. It’s the golden rule actually. “Treat others the way you want to be treated”. You get exactly what you give.
Another important note: Us sticking up for ourselves, stating our opinion, or disagreeing with you doesn’t equal disrespect. We are human, we have feelings. Understand that.
There goes all the things me, and most children, would want you to know. There are probably many more, but these are some of the biggest I’d think.
Lastly, all would like to say is: If you can’t comprehend the fact that your child will grow to be their own person with thoughts, feelings and opinions different to yours..
That’s on you, not them!