Many of us tend to take our children for granted, and expect them to run around and fulfill all our chores as proof of their love and obedience.
Some parents bend over backwards when teaching their children manners. Recently some visitors came over with their little daughter,
and I was surprised when I saw the mother prompt her daughter to get up
and start offering the tray of snacks around. They were, after all,
guests in my home, and I didn't see the need as to why the little girl should feel as though it is her job to lighten my 'burden'.
Many of us tend to take our children for granted, and constantly expect them to run around and fulfill all our chores and in doing so, to prove their obedience to us. Parents do so much for their children, and do expect their childrento run around a little to their bidding. But the way you put your request across is what matters.
How many times have you felt too lazy to get up from your couch, and so made your child run to the kitchen and fetch you a glass of water?
If your child is up, running around and willing, sure, you can ask him
to bring you water - there's certainly nothing wrong with that. But if
your child is also lying down on the couch with you, think twice before
commanding him to jump up and do your bidding. This is because, in
doing so, you are sending a subtle message to your child that he should
learn to take commands and orders from others because he may not be as
important as they are. If you do ever want your child to perform a
quick chore, make sure you request him, and that he knows the choice is
up to him. Don't command your child and make him believe that he is
expected to obey you. If you are unwell, you can expect your child to
do a lot more running around for you, but at the same time you should
let your child know that you are not feeling well, and that he should
look after you just like you look after him when he is unwell. This
way, your child's sense of self-importance will not be diminished in
Chores v/s Commands
Giving your children
responsibility for fulfilling chores is different from expecting them
to jump up and fetch you the remote control or a glass of juice from
the fridge simply because you are feeling too lazy to do so yourself.
Once again, remember that the key difference here is expecting your
child to do something, as opposed to requesting him.
And when you go visiting, please don't nudge your little girl
and make her get up and serve snacks around! If you are visiting family
or are at a place where your child feels comfortable and perfectly at
home, it is a different matter. But if she is a guest, do let her sit
back and enjoy being treated as a guest. Don't make it a priority to
show others what a good little girl you have. Instead, make your little girl your priority.
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- The Indiaparenting Team