Review on Characteristics of a Good Parent According to North American Culture

I read some North American’s books, articles and blogs on the topic, “What makes a good parent?” and made a summary as the following.

A person who loves his or her children unconditionally

Children need a lot of attention, time and love. Love is the great motivator to raise a happy child. Love your children no matter what happens even sometimes they may disappoint you, anger you, or even disrespect you, but even during those times your children should know that they are loved by you. Because your children are in developmental stages, they need your love and support.

Show love to your children everyday. A gentle cuddle, a little encouragement, appreciation, approval or even a smile can boost the confidence and well-being of your children.

A role model

Children emulate their parents. As a parent, you are your children’s first role model. Pay attention to what you say and what you do around them and think about what kind of example you are making. Model the behavior and character you hope your children will adopt and live by the rules you set.

A good listener

Express your interest in your children and listen to their feelings, reactions, and opinions. Try to understand their point of view.

A good friend

A good parent enjoys and wants to play with his or her children. No matter how busy you are, you should spend time with your kids as possible as you can. Children, especially at a young age, learn a lot through play. For teenagers, talks to them frequently like a friend. For example, at dinner times talk to them about their school, and share your experiences with them as well.

A good mentor

A good parent will teach his or her children the value of life to inform and advise them on what is right and wrong. While as a mentor, a parent should let the child to choose which path to take as long as he or she is capable to do it, but must be aware that you give the child all the information. A parent must allow the child to make his or her own decisions and to enable the child to make his or her own mistakes as well.

When your child acts out in a harmful and spiteful manner, avoid criticism by focusing on his or her behavior, tell the child that such behavior is unacceptable and suggest right ways. Avoid public humiliation. If your child misbehaves in public, take him or her aside, and scold your child privately.

A person who respects his or her child’s individuality

Avoid comparing your children to others, especially siblings. Each child is individual and unique. Celebrate their differences and instill in each child the desire to pursue their interests and dreams.

Teach your children that it is okay for them to be different and they do not have to follow the crowd. Teach them right from wrong when they are young, and they will always be able to make their own decisions, instead of listening to others.

Recognize your children’s individuality. Every child is unique. Even though your children may resemble you, they are not you. Consider the individuality of each child a blessing and pursue ways to expand on that. Open your mind to the possibilities.

An education promoter

Invest your children’s education, both intellectual and moral. Make sure your children can read and write and think well. Be bravely counter-cultural wherever necessary. Discourage obsession with dating and romance. Protect your vulnerable children from the most damaging aspects of your popular culture.

A person who promotes discipline

Discipline your children. Choose the method that works best for your children. Set boundaries such as bedtimes, so they learn that they have limitations. By doing so, they actually get a sense of being loved and cared about by their parents. They might rebel at those boundaries, but inwardly enjoy knowing that concerned parents love them. Limit TV and internet use. No kid needs a TV in his or her room. And it’s rarely advisable to allow an internet capable computer in a child’s room. Keep the entertainment machinery in family areas, and supervise its use.

Enforce rules that apply to every person leading a happy and productive life. Be consistent and enforce the same rules all the time, and resist your child’s attempts to manipulate you into making exceptions. Communicate clearly to your children. Children should be very familiar with the consequences of their actions. If you give them a punishment, be sure they understand the reason and the fault.

A person who promotes independence

Do not routinely do things for your children that they can learn to do for themselves. Encourage responsibility by insisting they clean their room and make their bed every morning. Even the youngest of children can learn to tidy their room and clean up their toys. As your child grows, give them more responsibility.

A person who has good self-control

When you are in bad mood, control your temper well.

A book lover

Provide lots of good books to your children. Start to read to your children early, and encourage kids to read as much as they can.

A flexible person with principles

Allow children to experience life for themselves, but do not just lose total control. Do not make decisions for them all the time; they must learn how to live so that they are ready when they are adults.

Do not strictly follow the parental behaviors of your culture or other defining factor. Each child is individual and each parent loves their child. Please do not believe that there is only one way to raise a child.

Life is a great teacher. If the consequences are not overly severe, do not be too quick to rescue your child from the results of their own actions.

Do not push your child into pursuits that they are not interested in. Because parents often want the best for their children and assume that their idea is always what is best, they tend to push kids. Let the children choose their extra curricular pursuits.

A person who works together with school

Be involved in the school. Visit your child’s teachers at open house, and get to know them. Ask questions regarding how your child is performing and interacting with other students. Make sure that you are checking homework, but not doing it for your child. Ask your child questions about his or her day and find out what he or she likes and dislikes on his or her learning experience.

Be involved and proactive in getting to know the environment of the children that your child attaches to. Get to know the other children and their parents. Your child will learn many things from his or her friends and be affected by them as well.

An optimist

Praise your children as possible as you can. Celebrate the good thing your child has done, even the small things in a positive way.

A patient person

No one is perfect, children make mistakes as adults do. Be patient to your children’s setbacks, give them your support, never give up.

It is very difficult to judge a parent on the way that they choose to raise their children. Each parent has his or her own impression of what makes a parent a good parent or a bad one. As long as the child is healthy and happy, then the parents are doing the best that they can. Good parents are not judged by how much money they spend on their child but by how much love they give to their child.

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