See how good a parent I am? My kid has achieved this, achieved that! This is show off parenting. Seeing your kid as an extension of your wants, your goals and dreams, your kid’s achievements are treated as a true measure of your parenting abilities. Every achievement of your kid is a reflection of your self worth.
Can’t you see the folly in this style?
What if the kid fails to achieve?
Won’t it be a reflection of your parenting inadequacy?
When your kid achieves something you gloat and when the kid doesn’t, you are down in the dumps. Is it fair for the kid?
When you show off your kid’s achievements, your kid is erroneously led to believe that only achievement brings in appreciation. If, for any reason, the kid fails to achieve, the kid’s sincere efforts are not appreciated. Instead, the kid feels guilty that he/she let you down. The kid, already at pains for not achieving what was expected, has now the added guilt to pull his self esteem to a new low. That doesn’t augur well for the kid’s emotional well being. The kid’s identity is lost. Both the parent and the kid are dependent on each other for their sense of self worth.
So, what do you do?
1. Learn to treat your kid as a distinct and unique individual, different from you, with his/her own unique talents, capacities and limitations.
2. Your parenting style should be tuned to be in sync with your kid’s talents and capacities.
3. Let the kid know that what is important is only that the kid gives off his/her best at any time and every time and accept the results as they come.
4. The kid has to compete with his/her own self and none else, to keep performing better and better.
5. You should rally around the kid irrespective of the results of his/her efforts and constantly encourage and empower to do better.
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