Families, communities, and nations are strengthened when parents thoroughly understand who is the parent and who is the child. Parents must act like adults and assume their God-given responsibilities to love, care for, and rear their children properly. Parents must remember that children have many people who want to be their friends but usually only two parents. Parental teachings and examples carry more weight with children than those of anyone else.
I was a perfect parent until I became a mother! I remember knowing exactly how children should be reared and what parents should be doing. When I was actually in the trenches of motherhood, I looked at life from a different position, but I was still fairly judgmental of other parents. I remember thinking badly of children - and their parents - because the children sucked their thumbs, wouldn't go into the Primary nursery, etc. Then I had a child that both sucked her thumb and refused to be out of my sight, and I became a lot less judgmental.
Please know that I am no longer judging parents or their child-rearing because I assume that all parents are giving their best efforts to their roles as fathers and mothers. I am however in a constant mode of learning, and I enjoy passing along information that may help other people. I found the following two lists and decided to pass them along to my followers in case you can glean any helpful tips from them.
The first list contains "Ten Questions Parents Should Answer Correctly If They Want Their Children To Have Confidence In Them: 1) Are you babying the child rather than encouraging him to do things for himself? 2) Are you making his life tense rather than relaxed? 3) Are you giving out more disapproval than praise? 4) Are you pushing the child beyond his abilities rather than realizing his limitations? 5) Are you aloof rather than friendly with the child? 6) Are you riding the child on his weaknesses rather than trying to improve them? 7) Are you holding up a superior child as an example rather than comparing the child to someone nearer his own abilities? 8) Are you setting an `I can't' example rather than exhibiting self-sufficiency yourself? 9) Are you overly protecting the child rather than teaching him responsibility? 10) Are you letting the child withdraw from situations he should be made to face?" (B. Von Haller Gilmer in Minute Masterpieces, p 101)
The second list contains ten statements by J. Edgar Hoover, late head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, explaining that "juvenile delinquency seldom if ever comes from homes in which: 1) Parents try to understand their children and find time to cultivate their friendship and love. 2) Parents of integrity face facts and live by the truth. 3) Parents live within their means and give their children examples in thrift, security, and stability. 4) Parents are industrious and teach their children that most of life's good things come only from hard work. 5) Parents have worthwhile goals in life and seek to have their children join them in their attainment. 6) Parents have common sense, and a capacity for friendship and a sense of humor. 7) Parents live in harmony with each other and do not quarrel in the presence of their children. 8) Parents have ideals and a compelling urge to serve rather than to be served. 9) Parents are unswervingly loyal to their own children, but can express righteous indignation and chastise them when necessary. (That old proverb "Spare the rod and spoil the child" is as vital today as it ever was.) 10) Parents' decisions are controlled, not by what their children desire, but what they need." (Albert L. Zobell, Jr. in Mini Talks, pp 101-102)