*TEACH YOUR KIDS TO ALWAYS BE HONEST, NO MATTER WHAT.
I remember like it was yesterday, my friend from elementary school telling her mom about something terrible that had happened to her at the hands of a babysitter, and her mom not believing her. This was so very devastating for my friend, because she WAS telling the truth. But, she had also given her mom many reasons to not believe some of the things she’d said in the past. I carried the pain of what she felt that day, having to live with a mother who thought every word from her mouth was a lie, into my own adulthood. I vowed to teach my kids to always be honest so that we’d never have reason to doubt anything they said. My friend eventually moved away to live with her grandparents when we got to 10th grade because of the contentious relationship she shared with her mother. To this very day, I don’t believe they communicate at all. Living in two different parts of the world, they choose to not be apart of each others lives.
Honesty is a very big deal in our home and it is something that my DH and I began to teach early on. It’s true that our kids’ minds are like sponges, retaining and soaking up all the knowledge it can, even in the early stages. Start teaching your kids about the importance of being honest at all times. If they’re still young, keep the story of Pinocchio readily available and turn it into an age appropriate lesson they will understand. As a pre-teen, if your child starts to continually check his nose in the mirror, I’d say you might want to investigate a little deeper the stories he’s been telling you.
*KNOW YOUR KIDS AT HOME AND AT SCHOOL.
It’s pretty ironic that this month (October) is NATIONAL BULLYING PREVENTION month and this particular tip just kind of popped into my head. So many parents walk around with blinders on where their children are concerned. Their kids are “angelic” at home, so these parents ASSUME they are “angelic” away from home, especially at school. I have encountered many of these kind of parents. They don’t take the time to “know” their kids at school for various reasons: 1) as mentioned, the kids are pretty good kids in front of their parents and 2) It’s just not priority with these parents. Every parent should spend time getting to know their child’s friends at school, their teachers at school and most importantly, their child’s REPUTATION at school. After having suggested this to many parents in the past, they were shocked (some extremely disappointed) to find out that their little “angel” was the campus BULLY.
*TEACH YOUR KIDS TO BE RESPECTFUL OF ADULTS AS WELL AS OTHER KIDS.
Parents really have no idea that respectful kids get a whole lot farther in life than disrespectful ones. Our kid’s journeys will be filled with many disappointments, trials and such, so why make it harder for them? Teach them at an early age to use these all-important words with EVERYONE they encounter: THANK YOU, PLEASE, EXCUSE ME, YES MA’AM, NO SIR. You will be surprised at doors that might necessarily have been closed to them, being opened by their simple show of R.E.S.P.E.C.T. And always remember: Nothing says GREAT PARENTING like some very respectful children!
*BE POSITIVE IN YOUR SPEECH AND MANNER AROUND YOUR KIDS.
If I can give you one bit of advice that you should definitely use, it would be this: DO NOT have grown-up conversations around, or in front of your daughters (kids)! If you have an issue with your friend, your sibling or whomever, it is between you and that person only. The child should never be privy to this kind of negativity. If the child loves this person, it makes it extremely uncomfortable for them to be around the person you’re having conflict with.
If you’re a parent with a wonderful parenting tip, why don’t you help me write my next book?! My team and I are now accepting submissions of parenting tips to be included in the next “THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE…” series, but we are ONLY including 100 in the book. Already, we have received more than we expected in such a short period of time. BUT, I’m seeking the best and from all submissions, will CHOOSE ONLY THE BEST! So, if you’d like your tip to be published, please visit wp.me/p3sUCq-l4. I look forward to your best tips ever!