One of the questions thrown up while we were brainstorming for a children’s workshop on emotions was “How does your child generally make you feel?” The question was meant to throw up reactions that parents feel while facing challenging situations with kids. Speaking for myself, I occasionally am amused with my kids, often frustrated and irritated, sometimes discouraged, embarrassed, guilty and my list went on a bit longer than I was comfortable with!




The fact is that as parents, children are our measure of success and worthiness. We judge ourselves by their success and achievement. We compare ourselves with other parents and our kids with other kids to come up with our own success parameters.

What do you want as a Parent?

Truth be told, most parents want well behaved kids. They should be loving, respectful, honest, get good grades, be self motivated, be self confident, independent and you get the drift! Do your wants coincide largely with my list?

The reality check

We all believe that our kids are unique, but isn’t it surprising that our challenges are so similar, well by and large!.”It’s so annoying to repeat the same instruction more than 3 times on deaf ears” or “ I am so drained from nagging ,whining, manipulating and quarreling” or “I am exhausted from shouting and threatening, that’s the only thing that seems to work!”

kid emotional

All we seem to be doing is punishing our kids and then we go on to feeling extremely guilty for getting angry in the first place. The classic reaction is to either blame yourself and feel ineffective as a parent or justify our anger and blame the child.

Raising well behaved kids is not easy!

Dr Sal Severe child psychologist, in his book “How to behave so your children will, too!”says that patterns of reaction in parents are generally two ways. They either give in to misbehaviour because they do not feel like confronting the problem now or they react with anger. Now reacting in anger will definitely affect future misbehaviour and non confrontation of the problem will make misbehaviour worse to so its better according to him, to be proactive to avoid discipline problems.

Keys to successful parenting:

  • Parents and children are partners in discipline
  • Discipline is a teaching process and not a punishing process
  • Your behavior and emotions affect a child’s behavior and emotion
  • Teach them to think for themselves
  • Teach kids self control so that they are in control and not under control
  • Build self esteem
  • Emphasize cooperation and not control
  • Be consistent; what you say, you follow through
  • Most importantly do not let misbehavior keep you from enjoying your child
  • Be strict but positive and develop a child like sense of humor
  • Learn to appreciate kids even when they make mistakes
  • Be open to change

Not all of the above principles /ideas might make sense to you because each parent and child is unique. So feel free to pick what works for you and remember they need not work all the time!