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Effective Parenting

There is a history to your parent-child relationship that began at the moment your youngster was born. To help you better understand the present, try to gain some insights into where you have been as a family. Think back on your experiences with your child when he was a baby, a toddler, and a preschooler. Ask yourself:

  • How active a parent were you in those early years? Did you play a major child-raising role in the family, or were there other demands (such as long hours at work) that kept you from being as involved as you would have liked?

  • What were your most enjoyable parenting and family experiences during those years?

Even if you made mistakes during those early years, you can amend them now. If you missed out on certain family experiences because you were working too hard, you still have many years to enjoy your spouse and children. In general, children are understanding and forgive their parents for shortcomings and faults. And if you weren't there when your child took his first steps or rode his tricycle for the first time, you can be there for other special events to come, like your child's school play and his soccer games.

 

Spend some time thinking about how you are doing as a parent during these middle years of your youngster's childhood. This is a challenging time, in which your child is seeking more independence and is questioning the family's rules. And, from time to time, you may have to help him with school-related problems. He will be developing more peer relationships, too, and his interactions with siblings may change.

 

For many men and women, the stress in their lives interferes with their ability to parent. If they are unhappy on the job, for instance, they might return home preoccupied and tense at the end of the day and be unable to handle the tasks of running a family as effectively.

 

Take a moment to assess how you feel about these and other important aspects of your life.

 

Evaluate problems in these areas, and how they might be influencing your family life. Whenever possible, find ways to deal with these difficulties in your life more effectively, so they will not interfere with your parent-child relationships.


Stern Center for Successful Solutions
Rae Louise Stern, L.M.S.W., A.C.P., L.M.F.T.
 
   Phone: 713-682-8118   
  Fax: 713-975-8586 955 Dairy Ashford St., Suite 110
  Email: rae@raesternhouston.com Houston, TX 77079
 

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