Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Best Parent

People talk about all kinds of different parenting styles. They will use what they read in books, newspapers, maybe heard on Oprah or just learned from their own parents, to guide them. Some will laugh and gawk at the way others parent. This will come from their own internal doubts as to whether what they are doing is right. Even the professionals go back and forth about what the right answers are. Infants on their stomachs, on their sides, their back, and then back to the stomach, does anyone really know? There are hundreds of opinions on the best way to discipline your child, or what they need or don’t need medicinally, but again who really knows? I have seen success stories from people who grew up in the Bronx, with no money and the worst of schooling and failures from those who grew up with lots of money, with the best of schooling and from the finest part of town. Some of the greatest minds in our time come from families that one might call “broken”. So what is the answer?

The truth is that when it comes to techniques, there is not just one answer. Each and every case and individual is different. What works for one, may not work for another. However there is one thing that is universal and never has failed, love. Of course everyone loves their child but it is the unconditional devotion that one puts into that child that will make them the great people we want them to be. The dedication that you put into your parenting style will shine through and cover your child with love and a feeling of individuality and self confidence. The success stories from the Bronx, always have the single working mom, who did everything for that child. I am sure that mother had plenty of people telling her how crazy she was but she ignored them and kept going. She didn’t have anyone or anything to guide her but her love for her children and it guided her to be fully committed. Her children witnessed her sacrifices and dedication, gathered strength from it and were able to achieve great things. Don’t be concerned so much with the style or technique, dedication and love is what will raise your children well, just as neglect and anger will tear them down.

Imagine a balanced scale with dedication and love on one side and neglect and anger on the other. What does your scale look like? What do you want it to look like? What can you do today to make it look the way you want it to?


Kiki said...

I have frequently asked my kids, "despite all the screw-ups, despite all the insecurity of being very young parents, what do you think helped in making you who you are today and in having a great relationship with your parents and siblings?"

I know, what was I thinking?

The answer always comes back to this: "We always KNEW, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that we were LOVED, unconditionally. That and the grace of God:)"

Mary said...

Kiki - I must say that even though we haven't been close through the years, I have always really admired your family. And seeing your kids on Facebook and how they treat each other and love each other I often think - wow! Kiki did a great job. (we'll give Ramon a little credit too! haha)

Alex - Since I didn't read yesterday's post until today, I thought it was an interesting combination to read these 2 back to back. Forgiveness & Parenting. Not always an easy combination.

Alex said...


I might add that all of the great teachers in our lives like Mother Teresa or Mahatma Gandhi, had a sort of a presence about them when they entered the room. I believe it was their unconditional love for everyone in that room that gave off such an incredible presence.

Anonymous said...

Agape, no doubt, is most important when raising your children. They can sense when love has strings attached. I hope all of my children will answer the question, "Were you loved unconditionally?" with a resounding yes. It is what I strive for every day.

Anonymous said...

I don't go to my pediatrician as often as most people but I think of him daily when he told me with my first child that I can never spoil a child with too much live..that is so true, I think these days parents feel bad for how r neglecting them and placing their children constantly in other people care that they buy them things to feel good... All they want us to buy them is time to be with us parents..

Ofi said...

Sorry.. Love

Kiki said...

Thanks Mary:) Yeah, let's give Ramon a little credit, poor guy, he's married to me:)