In my work as a marriage and relationship coach I encounter many people who are dealing with parenting challenges. I also see the effects of the parenting they received on their current relationships. Therefore I wanted to share these thoughts on parenting.
A parent’s primary job is to reveal self-worth to their children. Self-worth is not to be earned or granted. One cannot earn what is already yours. No one can give you what you already possess. Self-worth is a God-given birth rite. It simply needs to be affirmed.
Parents reveal this worth to their kids through love, nurturing, safety, discipline, and respect. Through these a child sees his or her worth and internalizes a base of security and confidence. The child feels validated and this becomes the psychological foundation on which he or she can build.
This foundation is critical for the present and future well-being of every child. It influences the way life is engaged, decisions yet to be made, and the quality of future relationships. This sounds daunting perhaps, but the good news is parents do not have to be perfect, just consistently loving and present to their children. Of course it is not easy but it is a job that deserves your very best.
Even when your children become adults they still look to you for affirmation. They want to know you are proud of them and that you are still there when they need you. However, if you have done your job well they will leave you to live their own lives. Now it is their turn. This is the bitter sweet reward for all you have invested. There is really nothing better in life!