Posts Tagged ‘Parenting’
Shaping Your Kids
After posting a blog item about how Robin and I raised our sons believing that they should be able to make their own choices, I got a call from a friend who said, “Yeah, Phil, but what if you can clearly see things that worry you? After all, you have often said their brains aren’t even finished growing until years later. What do you do then?” He went on to tell me about his 13-year-old daughter who, a few nights earlier, had drained a glass of milk at dinner and said with a proud grin, “Hey, Dad, I’m learning to chug.”
“It’s not the first time I’ve gotten the feeling that she wants to try alcohol or at least has it in her mind,” he told me. “So what do I do, right now, to keep her from gaining momentum toward a bad life choice?”
Good question! So, as a parent, what should you do when you see early warning signs that your child might be headed down the wrong path?
Supportive Parent or Pushy Parent?
We had a really interesting response to our show about parents who seem to be way over-involved in their kids’ goals and dreams, and who sometimes push their kids toward something that they may want a lot more than their kids do. Several of you wrote to ask how Robin and I raised our sons. How much did we push them to succeed when they were younger? And when did we pull back and say, “It’s time to let them make their own way”?
It’s tough to know where the line is, even when you spend your whole life in the world of human functioning. Seems you lose a little — actually a lot — of objectivity when it is your relationship with your own kids that you are assessing and managing! As parents, we all want to teach our children to be responsible, yet we also want them to be self-motivated. It really bugs me when I see parents pushing their kids toward their wants and living vicariously through them. It is sad for both parent and child. I’ll give Robin and me credit and say that I think we actually did dodge those bullets. (more…)
The Motherhood Debate
Wow, thanks to all of you who watched the show we did on the realities of motherhood. I have to say, I was so pleased at the huge feedback we got on our Dr. Phil Web site message boards, my Twitter page, as well as on my Facebook page about Maria, one of our guests on the show who gave up physical custody of her three daughters when she and her husband divorced.
Some of you were simply flabbergasted at what Maria did: “What a horrible message that gives to the children,” wrote a viewer named Annette. “I can’t IMAGINE not reading bedtime stories, kissing, hugging, and saying I love u to the moon and back, every single night,” added Alisa. “Nothing replaces a mother’s daily nurturing.” (more…)
I’m reading a book entitled Generation Me: Why Today’s Young Americans Are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled — And More Miserable Than Ever Before, by Jean M. Twenge, Ph.D. It’s pretty interesting, actually. It deals with a concept that we’ve talked about on the show in the past; that we seem to have a generation of entitled children.
I find this particularly interesting because we are kind of at a “crash point” right now, because we are in such an economic turndown. Most parents cannot even almost meet the expectations of kids — be they 5 or 25 years of age — because with job loss, housing foreclosures, gas prices through the roof … etc… it’s tough enough just to make ends meet! (more…)