Yours is a tiny family. Just the two of you, parents and your only kid. Have you paused to think, analyse and understand what it means to both of you as parents? What does it mean, to your only kid? All izz well with your little family? Are both of you, parents, happy? Is your kid happy and shaping up well? Let us explore and look at some of the issues.
Small is beautiful and in the context of the family, it may make economic sense too, as there are less mouths to feed and less burden on resources. In the context of modern and difficult times, it may also mean less challenges to face. Both of you, parents, now live for your only kid. It means, you devote all of your time and energy on your only kid, giving him/her, undivided love, care and attention. So, everything should be just perfect for your kid, shouldn’t it? Well, let us have a reality check.
1. Your World revolves around your only kid.
It means your world starts and ends with your kid. Since your world is shrunk, you may have a tendency to restrict your outlook and outreach too. Instead of expanding your love and compassion towards others, you may tend to become narrow minded. You have to be cautious, not to get trapped with this tendency.
You may have a tendency to give in to all your kid’s demands and go soft on discipline, turning your kid quickly into a spoilt brat. You should clearly draw the limit and stay firm to avoid it.
You may have raised expectations and attachments towards your kid’s achievements, thereby increasing pressure on him/her. This may create a negative ambience of anxiety and fear of failure, which is disempowering to the kid. You have to combat this tendency by accepting the kid for what he/she is and not what he/she ought to be. You must also be aware that your kid is a unique individual with his/her own talents, limitations and tendencies and deal with, accordingly.
From your kid’s perspective, the world revolves around you, adults in the family. With no siblings, there is no sibling rivalry, but there may not be much fun and play and sharing of youthful energy either. The kid may feel isolated. To avoid this, you should see to it that other kids visit and spend a lot of time with your kid at home. You should also encourage the kid to socialize well outside home. Your kid must also be provided with plenty of opportunities to expand his vision beyond the family to experience and share kindness and compassion towards others. For this, you should take your kid out very frequently and allow him/her to mingle with others freely.
2. Your parenting style assumes added significance.
With only one kid in the family, your role as a parent is very important; you must be aware of the way you do your parenting. Unless you are cautious, you may fall into the trap of some of the parenting styles that impede the proper development of your kid’s personality for success. You may have a tendency to be a helicopter parent, a safety centric parent, an incubator parent, buddy or friendly parent, show off parent or even a secondary parent.
You may wish to read the articles on these parenting styles to know what they are and what their repercussions could be on your only child. If you have any other issues as parents of a single child, do let us know.
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