I show concerned parents who want to give their children the best start to life how to better understand their children.

20 Mar 2013

Parental Focus

There are many things to consider when you are thinking about becoming a parent. I know that not all babies are planned and I would wager to say that upwards of ninety percent are not. Even if you find yourself in the latter category I am sure that your desire is to be a great parent. We all set out to be the best parent we can but sometimes in life we get our focus off kilter and we need to get back on track.

I do not know what your belief system is but I am a Christian and I know that God sets everything up in a structured way for a reason. He said to put Him first, then our spouses, then our children, then our jobs, etc. He said this so that our lives would stay balanced and if we have our priorities straight and we are living according to His will then our lives will run so much smoother. Even if you do not have the same beliefs you have to know that life needs structure and there has to be a chain of command for everything to work.

We all want what is best for our children but sometimes things get hurried and confused and we lose our focus on what is best for our families. We sometimes think that the more activities our children are involved in, or the more friends they have, or that their academic achievements are the most important things in life. This is where we get off base at times and things start to get out of control.

First, we must establish a relationship with our children; that is a priority. They must know without a shadow of a doubt that we love them. Our focus should be to do everything with their good in mind and not what looks good to people in the world or if they are keeping up with the crowd. Sometimes, as parents, we do things with the best of intentions but it ends up being some kind of a race or competition using our children as the game pieces. It is most important that you get to know your children and that they know you. I can not reiterate this enough. Not like best friends, they do not need friends they need you and the security of your unconditional love. They need that special someone or some ones (called mom and dad) who know them inside and out and are able to help them to maintain structure and balance in their lives. Life is hard and we all need a home base but our little ones especially need the security that only we can bring.

The only thing that is going to keep our children safe and from acting out or rebelling when they get older is realizing they are loved and having a deep seated relationship with us so that they feel secure. Even if the world is changing, the people in our children’s lives are coming and going, and school is increasingly getting more difficult, we as parents must help them to stay balanced in our love and support. Always having home life and family as structured as possible in the world we live in now is so important.

Some families really have it all together and do all the right things but I have noticed that even in my family that some children spend far too much time on their own. Even if they are in a sport or organized academic or group activity and are constantly occupied they are still alone if they are not with family. I am not saying that they should not be involved but their whole lives should not be in going places and doing things without their family. On the other hand there are children who are involved in none of these things and sit at home alone while parents work, or sit in their rooms on the computer, or even in front of the television. I think sometimes parents think that if the kids are home and they can see them that they are safe and being nourished. It is not enough to be in the same house with them, and it is not enough that they are around people, even good people. They need interaction with mom, dad, and siblings who love them. They need the security and stability this brings to their hearts and lives.

Beyond setting up a family game night, beyond having a “date” with our children, beyond tucking them in at night there needs to be a connection. If you make this connection with them when they are small then when they become teens you will still be able to reach them if they have a rebellious period in their lives. But odds are they will not because you are connected with them.

I have one daughter and one son, my daughter never rebelled, my son did and I believe it was because I became a single parent when he was ten. He needed the stability of mom and dad but did not have it. Sometimes things happen that are out of our control. But, even though he rebelled, I did not lose touch with him. We still talked, we even argued, we reasoned, we cried, we were able to work through it together. I was not a stranger to my son or him to me and even though we were both going through heartache we did not disconnect. I praise God we had formed this bond when he was young and it has lasted and has withstood the test of rebellion.

When I see children, friends of my son or daughter, wandering aimlessly through life with no one to go to it breaks my heart. I do my best to reach out to them and include them in our family. I know that sometimes they do have a family who cares about them and they are in a rebellious stage like my son but I believe that most do not have anyone to help them because most parents are caught up in their jobs, struggling with marital situations, or out dating because they are no longer married and the children are like roommates at very best. They feed them, clothe them, and make sure they go to school and their job is done.

I know that life is hard but when you have children under God and then your spouse they need to be your priority. This is not to say that we can not have some adult time but we must allot the majority of our free time to our children or we will lose them and they will lose themselves.

I know most of you are like me and love to spend time with your children. Sometimes it is not our fault but the not wanting to spend time with us falls on their shoulders! Then we must intrude on their lives, hopefully without causing a big stink, but think of fun ways to get them to spend more time with us. One thing to remember is to not be nagging about things the entire time we are with them. Do not use this time, whether it be dinner time, playing miniature golf, going to the movies, taking a walk, or whatever to discuss problems. Just be with your children, share light things that happened during your day, talk about something funny, ask them about an event they have been to recently, etc. And unless this is a bone of contention between you ask them how they are feeling. If you start this with them when they are young it will not be a big deal.

My children both know me so well that if they are down I will not let a minute go by without them telling me what is going on. If they say “nothing” then I will follow them around like a hound dog on a scent. It does not usually freak them out because I have been doing it since they were able to speak. They may roll their eyes at me and just give me a brief overview but they know they have to say something or I will not give up. As long as they at least tell me, “It is nothing big, really. I will tell you later”, then I am okay…. Till later.

Get to know your babies, toddlers, grade schoolers, and tweens intimately, from the heart, and the rest of your life you will have a bond that will give them and you great joy, security, and a lifelong relationship that will not disappoint either of you. It is well worth every sacrifice of time and love that you have to give.

Author Bio:
Amanda Carlson, a blogger as well as a former newborn care nurse contributed this post. To stay connected to her previous career and share the knowledge she gained, she began writing for www.newborncare.com. You can reach her at amanda.newborncare [at] gmail.com.

I show concerned parents who want to give their children the best start to life
how to better understand their children.
And I show people who are facing difficulties that they are not alone.

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I show concerned parents who want to give their children the best start to life
how to better understand their children.
And I show people who are facing difficulties that they are not alone

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