Does being the parent of three children qualify you as an expert on parenting? Apparently this parent thinks so. In Mom’s Journey: Practical Tips for Raising Kids, Limor Friedman gives hundreds of tips on raising children from the age of 1 to 18, but that doesn’t mean I agree with all of them. The book purports to give tips for parenting that do not require raising one’s voice or implementing punishment in order to make a stand, but it’s written in a critical and condescending tone that does not read well to parents who raise children different from the way she does. Is there a manual for moms that tell us the perfect way to raise our children? Of course not. Different children require different types of parenting and as moms, its high time we recognize that the differences in our parenting methods do not require a ranking from best to worst.
Some examples of tips from this “practical mom” come from her section on how to handle crying, and this includes infants.
- Be attentive and take control. Do not be manipulated by crying.
- Be reasonable about their needs.
- Treat them like adults so they’ll act like adults.
Friedman lost me when she started her discourse on how manipulative babies can be. After all, she says, when your child cries and screams and you come around, he has just outsmarted you. Apparently, the battle of wills between you and your baby are lost when you pay attention to his cries and meet his needs because babies are so smart that they manipulate you toward their will. If you want a quiet home full of obedient children who know you won’t come to them when they cry unless you’re ready to do so, this is the perfect book for you. Personally, I’d rather raise my children in a loving home where they know that they can receive comfort from the person who birthed them, even if society can sometimes be cruel. I do not personally recommend this book, but I did agree to give my fair review of this book in exchange for a free copy of it.
My personal suggestions as a mom and a teacher for raising a child in a warm and loving home?
- Love your children as they are. All children are different and thus, the rule of “fair is not always equal” applies even at home. As long as your children know that you love them no matter what, whatever consequence you impose for negative behavior may not be received well, but your child will always come back to you for comfort.
- Model what you want to see. If you don’t want your children shouting at each other and using negative language, don’t shout at your children and use negative language around all the time.
- Consistency is key. Do what you say you’re going to do and do it all of the time. Children crave rules and boundaries, even if they don’t always act as if they like them. There is a sense of security that comes with knowing what to expect from your parents.
- Provide healthy meals as often as possible. Sometimes you’re tired and you’re going to want to order a pizza or make the macaroni and cheese, but balance is the key. Even if your child doesn’t eat the vegetables or healthy fruit you provide, always provide it. We’ve found that the more we expose our children to different foods, the more often they’ll try these foods.
- Do what’s best for your family. You know what your child needs and you know what works for your family. Listening to what other parents say they do with their children and taking it as gospel will only make you feel bad. As long as you’re raising your child in a respectful and loving home, you really can’t do that much wrong.
[bctt tweet=”We’re not perfect, but we’re moms. We can do this!” username=”@embracespectrum”]
If you want to get a copy of this book and see if her suggestions work for your family, you can find it on Amazon. But my personal suggestion for you is to listen to your heart when parenting your child. If you’re really listening, you’ll know what to do. You do your thing, mom, because, as the song says, “Mother knows best.”
Is there a perfect mom out there somewhere who can give advice that fits every mom’s situation? I don’t think so. Nobody is perfect. Let’s band together and just support each other as moms in a judgment-free zone. It takes a village, you know? But that village should be supportive and loving ust as mch as our child. Once you find that loving, supportive community, take hold of it and don’t let go. No, we’re not perfect. But we’re moms. And we can do this together.