Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Successful Parenting

I have raised five competent adults, maybe I should write about this more.  It's just that I have come to believe that so much is genetic that I view advice askance.  Also, I got some things terribly wrong about parenting and don't think I should set myself up as an expert.  My humorous advice while the children were growing up was that the key was "Have children who make you look good.  Don't let them forget that's their job."  But that is actually not so far from the truth.

I now tell young couples "Have more children and worry about them less.  They'll be fine. And they're fun when they are adults." No one listens, not that I know of, but it's still worth saying.

I clicked over to this article Parents of the Most Successful Children Do These Ten Things expecting to hate it, shaking my head at most of the blather and leaving a snippy comment "correlation is not causation" at the end. That caution does still apply, but this wasn't terrible.


Donna B. said...

Not terrible = not all that great. Even #3, the best of the 10, misses the point. It's not strategy or process (substitute words for innate abilities?) that needs praising, it's how hard they worked. I get bombarded with explanations of strategies and processes when I tell my grandchildren "I bet you worked really hard to do... fill-in-the-blank." It's the work, their effort, they need to be praised for.

Numbers 5, 6, & 7 are somewhat contradictory. Run to their side, trust them to solve their own problems, advocate for them.

I think #8 is horrible. Nag, nag, nag... does that ever work? What does work is saying that you won't be disappointed if they've done their best -- and letting them decide if they have.

Numbers 9 & 10 are just silly.

Number 1 is horrible. While sounding so good by including the phrase "can afford" it puts way too much emphasis on wealth and privilege. That emphasis is again related in #2 -- good relationships. Right, if your children are Harvard students.

Please tell us about your parenting. It's bound to be better than that article!

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Maybe I should read it again! Perhaps I was so happy that it didn't include things I expected that I felt strangely warmed by what was there.

Donna B. said...

My kids turned out awesome in spite of my parenting, or lack thereof. The best thing I did was not getting in their way too often.

I'm a much better grandparent. And it's more fun.

But I wasn't kidding about hearing about your parenting. I think you faced some unique challenges.