Posts Tagged ‘Dads’

Are Our Expectations for Children Too High?

September 16, 2014

shave

 

I believe very strongly in setting firm but fair expectations for my students when it comes to behaviour, respect for others and effort. But in doing so, I must be mindful not to overburden them. The last thing I want is for them to drown in unrealistic expectation.

Author and speaker put together a list of unfair expectations parents put on their kids:

 

1. Always be in a good mood.

Isn’t it upsetting when you come home from a long day of work and your kids are in a bad mood? You worked hard all day to put food in their bellies; the least they can do is not add to your stress. Right?

I’ve felt this way, but the thing I had to realize is that they have bad days too. It might have been that irritating kid at school or a teacher in a bad mood, it could have even been their other parent, but our children experience things throughout their day that will put them in a bad mood, just like us.

We have to cut them some slack at times; they have issues to deal with too. Do you remember how crazy being young felt at times? They’re not always going to be in a good mood, and we have to learn to accept that. Don’t misunderstand me, if your child is ALWAYS in a bad mood, that’s a different story.

2. Be perfect in school.

It’s natural to want your children to study hard and breeze through school like Doogie Howser, MD, but you have to remember that was a TV show! In real life, children learn things differently. It’s our job to guide them, not punish them because they may have a harder time learning.

We’re not perfect at work — at most jobs, it’s not expected. School is our children’s form of “work” until they go out into the world.

3. Never mess up.

It’s frustrating when our children mess up. It could be a dish dropped, door slammed or something bigger, like a car accident. Hey, WE MESS UP TOO! Why do we try to hold our kids to a standard that we can’t maintain ourselves? Mistakes happen, we ALL mess up, that’s life. Don’t hold being human against your children.

4. Be grateful for what I’ve given you.

We give our children so much, and yes, they should be grateful, but being a parent means putting your children’s needs before your own. We can’t just give them the scraps.

That goes for giving of yourself too. Just because you’re in a room with them doesn’t mean you’re spending time with them — especially if you’re glued to the TV. They shouldn’t be grateful for just your presence; they need your attention, too. Give them everything you have, not what you think you can afford to spare.

5. Ignore how we treat each other.

Our children see and pick up more than we think. When we have those “heated” discussions in what we think is private, chances are they know what’s going on.

How you treat each other will affect what kind of people they grow up to be. If you talk down to each other in front of them, if you criticize or belittle each other, you better believe they will too one day.

Our children learn how to treat others from us. Not what we tell them — how we actually treat people. Think twice before you let your emotions take over and cause you to say something that could affect your kids.

6. Don’t try to get away with anything.

I remember trying to get away with so much stuff when I was younger. My mother would yell at me when she caught me. She would tell me daily that she couldn’t wait for me to have children to see what she has to go through.

I use to think, Whatever, Mom… until I had children of my own. Turns out, mom was right. We have to remember what it was like at that age and not make every incident a nuclear explosion.

Yes, some things warrant certain punishments, but others aren’t that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things. Please don’t misinterpret what I’m saying. If it’s a minor issue, letting your kids learn a “life lesson” might be a better approach.

Our youngest son worked hard all summer to buy a laptop for himself. When we moved here to Maui, he ended up dropping it and cracking the screen. We found out a few weeks later, and we were furious.

He lied to us, he hid things from us, he broke an expensive item. We had to take a step back, cool off and remember that this affected him more than us; he bought it with his own money. We talked to him about the lying, but him breaking his own laptop was a life lesson.

7. Always forgive.

You can’t constantly treat your children poorly and expect them to always forgive. They might have a high tolerance for our issues, but there will come a limit.

There are some rough situations. Parents split up, maybe even divorce; there are money issues, stresses of everyday life, and lots of things that are out of your control. But you have to make the best out of every bad situation and not take it out on your children. In those situations, you have to do as much as you can to give them some sense of normalcy.

8. Do what I say, not what I do.

At the end of the day, our children learn more by what we do, not what we say. Actions do speak louder than words in parenting, and you have to lead by example.

When I told my children I was writing this, they informed me that I had a lot more than eight unrealistic expectations. I was irritated, but I’m sure they’re right.

We have to let our kids be kids, not perfect robots. They’re going to mess up — that’s life. Our job is to guide them and be there for them. If a situation requires discipline, then by all means do what needs to be done.

Here is what I challenge you to do: Take a step back first, and don’t let your emotions control the situation. These years are vital in molding the kind of people they will become.

I Love it When Children Think for Themselves

July 24, 2014

I love it how this 7-year-old doesn’t let his high principles get muddied just because he is a child talking to a persuasive adult:

 

 

Click on the link to read 10-Year-Old’s Marriage Advice to His Teacher

Click on the link to read The Science of Parenting

Click on the link to read Why the Call to Fine Parents for Not Reading to Their Children is Utter Stupidity

Click on the link to read Children are Precious!

Click on the link to read Is it Ever OK to Lie to Your Kids?

Click on the link to read 9 Characteristics of a Great Teacher According to Parents

9 Truths About Children and Dinnertime

April 25, 2014

 

dinner

As a stay-at-home father I can fully appreciate this brilliantly realised list by Beau Coffron:

 

1. You learn to eat one-handed.
When you have a baby, you should get a Ph.D. in doing things one-handed. You find out you didn’t really need that other hand anyway. Serving the food with one hand? Easy. Pouring drinks? Simple. Cutting steak? C’mon, give me something difficult. With a little practice, parents can become magicians with that one hand. In between having babies you don’t lose this skill, either; it just goes into hibernation and comes out again when it’s needed.

2. You wish someone would invent seat belts for the dining room table.
How has someone not thought of this already? We can put a man on the moon but we can’t figure out a way to strap a 6-year-old to their dinner chair? Kids act like you make them sit on nails when they are at the dinner table. Partly it’s just the 45 times they need to go to the bathroom, but the other times seem to be an involuntary reaction to vegetables, little brothers or both.

3. Finding a Kids Eat Free place is like winning the lottery.
Before kids, I didn’t think “Kids Eat Free” coupons were worth the paper they were printed on. Now, I wouldn’t trade them for getting “Let It Go” banned in the United States (although it’s tempting). The beauty of eating at restaurants that give out these coupons is that not only do kids eat free, but you also don’t have to clean up the mess on the floor! This benefit alone automatically triples what the coupon is worth.

4. Chicken nuggets are a food group.
You try to make balanced meals, but honestly, many parents always keep frozen nuggets in their freezer for backup. Nuggets are like the first aid kit of the kitchen. Dinner goes wrong. You have nuggets. Kid’s friends stop by unexpectedly? Nuggets to the rescue. Nothing like breaded chicken… um, pork… uh, turkey? It doesn’t really matter what that meat is — if this is the first time your child has eaten more than two bites at a meal in three days, you are not complaining.

5. Dogs are basically vacuum cleaners.
Remember when your dog used to be your prized possession? You would go dog treat shopping, and buy it that special collar. Now the dog is 10 pounds overweight because of the mounds of food the kids feed him. After your children are done with dinner, there might be a whole meal in scraps under that table. Dogs are now more than man’s best friend; they are every parent’s best cleaning appliance.

6. Who needs napkins when you have sleeves?
No matter how many times you tell kids not to, or how many stacks of napkins you pile in front of their plates, a sleeve always gets used. OK, maybe not at every meal, but every single time you serve fried chicken or spaghetti. When drinking water or eating Saltines, kids will use every napkin in the house to clean themselves up instead.

7. Dirty dishes seem to multiply like rabbits.
Parents, how many times have you looked around after the meal and wondered where all those extra dishes came from? Some of them you don’t even recognize as yours. Since when did mac and cheese require you to use 22 plates, 17 bowls and 8 spatulas? You don’t know how, it just happens. Like how LEGO bricks transform into deadly weapons that attack parents’ bare feet at night, it’s unexplainable.

8. It’s against the law for a parent to have a “hot” meal.
Remember that scene from the movie A Christmas Story when Ralphie states that his mother hadn’t had a hot meal for herself in 15 years? Before you were a parent, you laughed at how far-fetched that line was. You’re not laughing now, are you? Between getting all the kids second helpings, extra ketchup and rags for spills — and cutting up their meat — your hot meal never stood a chance.

9. Dinner with your kids can be your favorite time of the day.
Even after all of this craziness that we call mealtime, it can still be one of my favorite times of the day. Why? I get to sit down with my family and listen to them talk about their favorite moments and their biggest challenges. This is family time. In our busy culture, we don’t get enough of it, and you can’t buy an experience like a good family meal. Meals like these are memories that last a lifetime in our family, and I wouldn’t trade them for all the quiet, clean, hot meals in the world.

 

 

Click on the link to read The Most Original Way to Pull Out Your Child’s Tooth Out (Video)

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Click on the link to read 44 Things Parents Say to their Kids to Get them to Eat

How Life Changes When You Become a Parent (Video)

November 19, 2013

 

 

As much as I enjoyed comedian Michael McIntyre‘s hilarious take on the differences between being post and pre-parenthood, I couldn’t help thinking about one crucial fact – as hard as it is being a parent, boy it’s worth it!

 

Click on the link to read How to Spend Time With Your Kids When You Have No Time

Click on the link to read The Meaning of Being a Father (Video)

Click on the link to read 24 Signs You Are a Mother

Click on the link to read A Father’s Priceless Reaction to his Son’s Report Card (Video)

Click on the link to read A New Way to Get Kids to Brush Their Teeth

Click on the link to read Tips to Help Parents Control Their Kids’ TV Habits

Click on the link to read 10 Steps Parents Can Take if their Child is Being Bullied

The Meaning of Being a Father (Video)

November 12, 2013

I know it’s an advertisement and I am in no way endorsing the product, but as a proud father of two, I think this clip says everything about the joys of fatherhood.

 

Click on the link to read 24 Signs You Are a Mother

Click on the link to read A Father’s Priceless Reaction to his Son’s Report Card (Video)

Click on the link to read A New Way to Get Kids to Brush Their Teeth

Click on the link to read Tips to Help Parents Control Their Kids’ TV Habits

Click on the link to read 10 Steps Parents Can Take if their Child is Being Bullied

Click on the link to read School Holidays are Very Hard for Many Parents (Video)

Click on the link to read 20 Reassuring Things Every Parent Should Hear

A Father’s Priceless Reaction to his Son’s Report Card (Video)

October 22, 2013

 

 

Is there anything more powerful than a proud parent? Watch how much this positive math result means to this father.

 

Click on the link to read A New Way to Get Kids to Brush Their Teeth

Click on the link to read Tips to Help Parents Control Their Kids’ TV Habits

Click on the link to read 10 Steps Parents Can Take if their Child is Being Bullied

Click on the link to read School Holidays are Very Hard for Many Parents (Video)

Click on the link to read 20 Reassuring Things Every Parent Should Hear

Click on the link to read 10 Tips for Nurturing Independence Among Children

Click on the link to read Seven Valuable Tips for Raising Your Child’s Self-Esteem

 

20 Reassuring Things Every Parent Should Hear

May 20, 2013

beth

Courtesy of writer and humorist Beth Woolsey:

 

1. You are a hero for your kids. You are. You’re a go-the-distance, fight-the-dragon, face-the-challenges hero for your kids. Taking a beating makes that more true. Not less.

2. We all struggle. Every parent. Everywhere. We all second-guess ourselves. And we all want to quit sometimes. Hold the good times close, and when things are tough, remember, “this, too, shall pass.”

3. Finding the funny may not save your soul, but it will save your sanity. Or maybe it’s the other way around. Either way, look for the humor and embrace the crazy. Laughter is a lifeline.

4. Every day, you will feel like you have mishandled something. Like you’ve been impatient. Like you’ve misjudged. Like you’ve been too harsh. Like you’ve been too lenient. You may be right. Apologize if you need to and then, whatever. Seriously. Just whatever. Let it go.

5. The crazy, the crying, the cuddles. The screaming, the sacred, the scared. The minutes, the magic, the mess. It’s all part of it. And it’s all worth it.

(more…)

Dad’s Letter to 13-Year Old Son after Discovering he had been Downloading from Porn Sites

September 27, 2012

This letter proves getting angry isn’t the only way to deal with potentially difficult situations:

I want to start out by saying that I love ya and I’m not trying to embarrass you. Before you do anything else click the star in the upper right hand corner of internet explorer which is already pulled up and then click back on the icon to the right of the skype symbol in your toolbar to pull this page back up. —————————————> That history is the reason that you got that scamware and all the other crap on your computer. I want to tell you that it’s ok. Listen, I was 13 once too and it wasn’t so long ago that I don’t remember. I’m not mad or anything. It’s life and I did it too. I just want you to know that most of those sites are places that can and will ruin your computer. You were actually lucky that it only did what it did. There are viruses and other scamware that can completly ruin a computer and I can’t afford to buy you another 1800 dollar machine because you went to a site that fried it.

There are sites that are completely safe and you can go on them and not have your computer turned into a piece of junk. You can go to these sites and not screw up your computer. Don’t click on any links taking you to other sites and please only go to these. Ninty percent of porn sites have crap that can brick a computer …

Listen, I won’t tell your mom and I’m not gonna make a big deal out of this. In fact I’m not gonna make any size deal out of it. If you don’t wanna talk about it that’s fine and I completely understand. I’ve been on this earth three times as long as you and there’s nothing you have done or will do that I haven’t done before. If you want to completely ignore this ever happened then I can and will do that too. Please don’t act awkward around me because of this. You have nothing to be embarrassed about. I just can’t have an 1800 dollar machine turned into a brick because you haven’t learned where to go on the internet. I’m not going to put a child lock on your computer or punish you in any way because as I said you did nothing wrong. I would like you to not be back here so much though. You literally spend all of your time back here. I’d like to see you more often. I like doing stuff with you and miss it.

I love you and I couldn’t be more proud of you.

 

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