Monday, November 19, 2007

Parenting Styles and Thoughts on Independence

I was reading in a fantastic book called Babyproofing Your Marriage about parenting styles. This is a great book for understanding what the heck happens to marriages once the baby happens to it.

The book has a theory that there are two types of parents. One type is concerned primarily with the child's safety and happiness. The other type is primarily concerned with the child's development over time and ensuring that that child will develop necessary skills for living in the world later. These are overarching concerns that somehow imbue themselves into most actions these parents have. Not that one isn't concerned with the other stuff just that it's not the MOST IMPORTANT. Usually there is one of each in a marriage, and it's called balance. I am of the latter type. That my daugher is well-rounded, adapted and independent is the concern that colors most of my behaviors toward her.

She's only 3 1/2 and so of course it's difficult to judge if I've done a good job so far. I think I have but that's just me. But I watch her, and I like what I see. She's very independent, knows what she wants and how to get it. She's not a follower. She can play with somebody or alone. She knows how to calm herself, and to amuse herself. She's adaptable and can solve problems. This is of course all in the context of being a toddler. Then again, she throws huge fits, doesn't like to share, is rude and snatches toys from babies. We're working on these things.

But as I look at the direction we're headed, I like what I see. If we can temper the tantrums (ha, little play with words), teach her some kindness, chewing with her mouth shut, and deflate the super-ego she's going to have because of her "other-parent-type" dad, we'll be in good shape.

To all the mothers out there who share their children's time with SP, I'm sorry if she's a brat sometimes, especially if I don't notice. She and I - we're works in progress.

3 backward glances:

frog ponds rock... said...

I look at my daughter Veronica,(she is 19 ) and I am very proud of her.. and sometimes I feel a tiny bit smug, that I have actually helped to make a nice person.. I am so pleased that I didn't 'ruin' her..

My son is 13 and in the middle of the "Hormone Wars" He will be a lovely man when he gets through the torture of teenagedom..


p.s My grand daughters name is Amy

Jessica said...

How is the weather in UT?? I LOVE Salt Lake btw.. Temple Square is so pretty!

Amy said...

frog pond: i'm not looking forward to adolescece! good luck there!

jessica: i KNOW! it's so pretty here, really! temple square is amazing, and luckily i only live like 10 minutes from it. the weather here is so great although today it started to get a little cooler. it' was nearly 70 yesterday; very uncharacteristic for this type of year. we usually have snow for thanksgiving! but we'll take it for sure!