1. Say Things You Don’t Mean
Don’t make a promise you know you’ll most likely not keep. When you build up their anticipation and let them down, this could cause long-lasting effects. Your child may never trust a word you say again. Especially if you continuously let them down. This causes a split in the parent and child relationship and may require therapy if it isn’t addressed.
2. Spoil Your Children
You may have grown up poor or lacking for the finer things in life when you were a child. Now you’re a parent and want to give your child everything.
However, is giving your child everything good for them? Will it teach them the value of having goals and working toward them? Or will they become privileged, entitled, and out-of-step with human decency?
3. Abuse Your Children
Abuse and discipline are two different things.
Back when corporal punishment was a thing, a swat on the backside was the appropriate form of discipline for a child’s bad action. However, laying hands on your child today could trigger a visit from a policeman and Child Protective Services.
Calling your child names, not attending to their needs, treating them like stray animals, and committing physical harm to them are forms of abuse.
4. Remain in Toxic Relationships
It’s understandable that you’re in love with someone. However, if that person is toxic, it’s not a good thing for your relationship. Add that to being a parent and you have the responsibility of protecting your child’s well-being as well as your heart. Which is more important to you? A “romp in the hay” is a fleeting moment but your child’s perception of you lasts a lifetime.
5. Set a Bad Example
Yelling, drinking, smoking, doing drugs, having sex in front of your children, bringing strangers around them, and not attending to your child’s needs is setting a bad example for your child.
Like it or not, you’re a guidebook for your child. Whether you wanted to be or not, once your DNA intertwined with another DNA strand, you made your child. Your child didn’t ask to be brought into the world but you’re responsible for providing your child with the framework of a productive and happy future.
6. Embarrass Your Children
Being cool with the kids is one thing but acting a fool in front of the kids is another thing.
You may have retained your youthful looks but you’re not seventeen again. Walking around in skimpy clothes in front of your daughter’s boyfriend may send his hormones in overdrive and boost your ego but it could damage your relationship with your daughter and potentially put you behind bars.
Telling your child’s private stories to others isn’t a laughing matter. Whether you do it in front of your child or when they’re not around, it could damage their mental well-being. It’s best to respect your child’s feelings.
7. Lie to Your Children
Lying and not divulging are two different things. Some things your child shouldn’t know. However, there are some things you’ll have to tell your children.
Divorce or the breakup of a relationship is a hard thing to go through. It’s even worse for the children. When parents split, their offspring are forced into a split reality. Taking time to explain to your child about the situation is better than pretending that everything’s okay when it isn’t. You end up doing unnecessary things to avoid the inevitable.
Establishing an open line of communication with your child allows you to build a trusting relationship with them. Therefore, when things go awry like losing a job, you can sit down with your child and have a discussion.
8. Gaslight Your Children
If you want to wreck your child’s mental stability, employ gaslighting.
When some couples separate and raw emotions are involved, one parent may involve the children by planting falsehoods in the child’s mind. The parent’s anger and revenge could possibly cause irreparable damage to the child’s mental state instead of hurting the other parent.
Calling your child names while you’re angry and later denying it to your child leaves your child in a state of confusion. After repeated instances of this behavior, your child may feel worthless and suicidal.
Protecting your child’s mental and physical well-being is a duty that you must uphold.
9. Say Mean Things About One Child to Another Child
Whatever you do, please don’t be a bully or create a bully.
If you feel the need to say horrible things about one of your children to their sibling, you may need to seek professional help. Nothing good comes out of saying and doing mean things.
When you talk bad about one child to the other child, that child carries on the negativity toward their sibling. Now you’ve created a bully who’ll have a high likelihood of becoming an unpleasant adult.
10. Reinvent Yourself Through Your Children
It’s normal to want your children to excel. However, as a parent, we mustn’t force our children into an unwanted life path.
Even though the years have passed us by and perhaps left us with unfulfilled goals, we shouldn’t expect our children to carry on the torch. It’s nice if they desire to but if they don’t, we should respectfully allow them to pursue their own goals.
Life as a Parent
Being a parent can be a difficult job because there’s not a definitive handbook on proper parenting. Many books have been written but none provide a cure-all for every situation. Every person is different as well as every child. The key is to practice doing the correct thing no matter what.