Sometimes new parents are so determined to NOT be the parents their parents were. With that mindset, they don’t parent at all. They want their children to grow up with more freedoms and not be dictated. They want their children to make their own choices. Then they wonder why their children have spun out of control.
The biggest problem with this mentality is that children cannot teach themselves. They still need to be taught; they need to be raised. Some small corrections when they are young, will save you large headaches as they grow older. They need to be taught to make good choices. This comes from you teaching them that choices = consequences. Children actually feel loved and secure when they know where the boundaries are. This begins from the age when they understand enough to be willfully defiant until they grow up and you are no longer supporting them. Don’t give up on them before that time.
I am always surprised to hear parents say that they could never get their children to “agree” to some restriction. They do not have to agree!!! You are the parent. You make the rules. Done in a loving and caring home, they will not feel suppressed. You don’t have to be a dictator.
You decide the parameters for your children. What would make them be better students or better people? Would no TV during the school week work better for homework? Would a zero tolerance to bad language curb a new found word? Some restrictions could include TV/media usage, cell phone privileges, clothing, curfews, language/cursing, language/respect for parents. These can all be enforced with lack of privileges. Yes, children have privileges, not rights, to certain things.
My thoughts are this: As long as you are supporting them, your children must live under your parameters. This may mean 18, or it may mean through college, if you are supporting them.
We are raising the next generation. Do it boldly!