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Best Way to Help Your Kids? Don’t.

Best Way to Help Your Kids? Don’t.

One of the secrets to raising your children to love, respect, and be confident in everything they do is—don’t help them! What? Yes, you heard me correctly.

No, I am not suggesting letting them fly free and learn everything on their own. The worst thing a parent can do when their child has a problem is to solve it for them. Why? Parents often take on or inherit their children’s problems for a variety of reasons including:

  1. You may have once crossed the same bridge, so doing it for them will save them the trouble of discovering it for themselves.
  2. It’s easier than explaining it to your child.
  3. You’ve done this for yourself for years, so why not do it for them now?
  4. There is nothing you wouldn’t do for your child because you love them so much. One could continue listing reasons for how we overextend ourselves to assist them in every way.

When things get out of control as parents, we tend to blame ourselves and ask, “Where did I go wrong?” The parents I have encountered often say, “I thought I did everything I could to help them and did everything I could to make life easier” or “I don’t understand why my kids can’t think for themselves. I did it all by myself. No one helped me.” When you hear that, the light bulb still doesn’t go off. You may reply with, “I know, right!” Wrong!

The truth is that we help too much. Please don’t be mistaken—there’s nothing, absolutely nothing wrong with helping your children. However, we should let them fall so that they can get up on their own. It is important for them to think of solutions and resolve their problems on their own. The safest and most effective way to help them is from a distance. It may be hard to watch, but it’s the best gift you could ever give them. Offer them knowledge, support and point them in the right direction. Creating self-confident and self-efficient and independent children is the best gift you can give yourself. And, always remember Que Sera, Sera, whatever will be, will be.


Mary Racioppo
Editor-In-Chief, City Parent