Parenting is largely an amateur sport. Nobody gets to practice beforehand, and while there is plenty of advice available in the form of books and online resources, much of this is contradictory and some of it is simply wrong. There is a credible source of suggestions on parenting, though, in the form of discussing your child's development with a qualified mental health counselor. The following articles can assist you in learning more about what parenting counseling can offer, and parenting advice in general.
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Parenting refers to the support given toward the development of a child. This can include their physical, emotional, social, and cognitive development. It happens from the time they are babies to the time when they become grown adults. Some people have biological children that are born to them, while others adopt. When you're parenting, you’re helping a small human develop into a fully grown adult. Parenting is natural, and there are many different styles of parenting. There’s no one right way to be a parent, and each family can decide on their own how to effectively achieve the goals that they have for their kids.
Teaching Your Children
One goal of parenting can be to teach your children about all aspects of the world. Parents are teachers and have the responsibility to show their kids how to survive and thrive in their lives. Parents can encourage their children, teach them how to be kind, empathetic to others, and genuinely care about other people’s feelings. Most parents want their children to grow up to be healthy and happy members of society. They want them to pursue their dreams, whatever those might be.
There are many different parenting styles, some of which can be healthier than others. Parents can choose the method that works most effectively for them. One parenting style might work well for one kid, while another parenting type might suit another child more. There’s no one right way to parent, but experts generally agree that authoritative parenting is the most effective style. In general, treating your children with love, kindness, and respect, and doing the best you can as a parent, can help ensure your child grows up feeling safe, loved, and cared for.
Attachment parenting can be one of the most loving styles of parenting. It focuses on healthy parent-child attachment and is a philosophy that promotes bonding between parents and their children. It’s meant to help children feel secure and connected to their guardians. Attachment parenting is accredited to William Sears, who came up with the term in 1982. The same year, he published a book called “Creative Parenting” where he talks about how this style of parenting can help kids develop a deep bond with their parents. Essential aspects of attachment parenting involve breastfeeding, baby-wearing, trying to understand a child's needs such as why they’re crying, and bonding. These aspects are called the 7 Baby B’s, and in total, they include breastfeeding, babywearing, bonding, bedding close to the baby (co-sleeping), belief in the language of your baby’s cry, balance, and beware of trainers.
Authoritarian parenting is a parenting style in which people are very strict with their children. It is a rigid parenting style that demands that rules are followed and doesn’t take into account the emotional needs of the child. In authoritarian parenting, guardians enforce and emphasize punishment when a child doesn't behave rather than re-directing their child or teaching them how to act more appropriately. Authoritarian parenting is not to be confused with authoritative parenting, which puts more emphasis on the needs of a child.
Permissive parenting is a parenting style in which people may overindulge their children. Children of permissive parents may not have many rules or guidelines, which may allow the children to generally do as they please. While it can be important for parents to be nurturing and caring toward their children, caregivers using permissive parenting are often too reluctant to impose boundaries on their kids. This lack of discipline can lead to negative consequences down the road.
Parenting Isn’t Easy
Parenting is a full-time job and there are rarely any breaks. It can be stressful and knowing what to do in different situations can be difficult to figure out. While you likely want the best for your children, it can also be important to take care of yourself. Talking to other parents about what’s worked for them can help you find the support you need. Additionally, speaking with a therapist can be an effective way to develop a more effective parenting style or learn how to cope with the stressors of being a parent. One convenient way to gain access to counseling as a parent can be online counseling.
Sometimes we’re at a loss for what to do as a parent. In these cases, it’s okay to ask for help. Online therapy can be a safe place to talk about parenting issues and decide what kind of parent you want to be. A therapist can be there to help and guide you on your parenting journey. Whenever you’re feeling ready, consider reaching out to get connected to a licensed therapist through BetterHelp. You can match with an online counselor who is specialized in parenting and get support for the unique struggles you’re facing as a parent.