Have you ever sat down and asked yourself: is my parenting style good enough? As a parent, you can be overwhelmed with busy schedules and neglect the main reason for all your toil. There’s need for an individual to work, hang out with friends, go to church etcetera, but if you heavily engage in activities which encroach family time, it’s a definitely negative as it is a step in the dark and an easy recipe for failed parenting. You might then be wondering, ‘is there something like bad parenting because I usually spend hours trying to put food on the table?’ The answer is yes because not all fathers or mothers can be quantified as good parents. If you’re finding yourself ticking the following points off your checklist: reconsider your parenting style:
Always away from home
As a parent, your programme should permit you to see your kids before they go to bed or during weekends, but if you find yourself at work more and more hours whilst investing less on seeing your children, then you’re a in the bad parent category. Yes, we all need financial gain but before taking up a career which barricades you from those you love most, ask yourself if raising a bunch of aliens with your surname is worthwhile.
Ever busy with social responsibilities
If you find yourself engaging most of your time in activities like societal meet-ups, parties or religious gatherings and trading in most of your family time for such frivolities, then your parenting style is negative. Being a father or mother is a commitment to raising future leaders, so most of your time should be with your family NOT with other people.
Very autocratic in behaviour
‘I am the head of this house and everything I say has to be adhered to! Failure to do so means you’re undermining my authority…’ If that is one of your mottos as a parent, we’re sorry to burst your bubble but not only are you a terrorist, you’re also a very autocratic parent. Just check the trend: If your kids run away from you when you enter the house, it’s not because they respect you. By taking a closer look, you might be shocked to realise that they are actually terrified of you!
Are you the kind of parent who battles with self to apologize to your child/children when you make a mistake? Some parents (mostly African) feel as if an adult NEVER makes a mistake and as such, have clouded judgements when it comes to the issue of apologising to kids. But if truth be told, a parent can also be in the wrong so regardless of your child’s age, you as a parent shouldn’t have overwhelming pride.
After reading this, ALWAYS remember that bringing forth life is okay but never good enough because even a street urchin can do that bit. At the end of the day, what really matters are the children you brood and if your work life, religious commitments or social responsibilities overwhelm your time with the family, consider changing that routine. Your life goal should NOT be for you to be a social icon but rather, for you to be a family oriented parent.
By Miriam C.R. Mushaikwa