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A New Year Parenting Resolution for my Child’s Self-Reliance


shutterstock_62795851A bright new shiny year has dawned, full of promise and opportunity. January is a happy month. You forget the blows of the year gone by and are filled with the hope of happiness to come. Then there are resolutions, which are nothing but self-audit reports. No one knows your own shortcomings better than yourself. So a new year surely is the time to renovate your personality too.

I make it a point to think about New Year resolutions. They are neatly categorised into work resolutions, home resolutions, parenting, social, and so on. They may not be followed in total, but something does get implemented. This year, I have made some parenting resolutions.

Over the past year I have started to feel that I have been protecting my children from the outside world a wee bit too much. Agreed that the world today is turning nastier day by day. But how far are we going to protect our children? One day they have to step out of the warm comfort and security of the house into a cold, hostile world. If we keep protecting them from exposure, they will look at this world in bewilderment and not know what to do. Also we cannot accompany them everywhere.

Someone once told me something very profound about parenting. “You must prepare your child to function well when you are not around. She should take decisions, perform activities and desist from sin WITHOUT you breathing down her back. That is the true test of your parenting.”

Also Read: My Daughter’s Independence Movement

This really struck a chord and I set on the path to excel as a parent.

Ergo, life lessons. This is the New Year resolution for me in the parenting section. The baby has to mature and learn some hard lessons in life. The plan is to introduce the world to them step by step. The corollary to this resolution is to make them more self-reliant. The babies were having the time of their life with the poor slogging parents making things available to them pronto. This scenario has to cease. The first lesson is to take care of your own self. So no more fetching and carrying by momma dearest.

In fact, I had already started on this path last year by not buying my daughter’s clothes and accessories myself. Now she decides what she wants to wear. Even if I do not see eye to eye with some of her choices, I hold my tongue. Taste is an individual attribute. One man’s food being the other man’s poison and all that. Children need to be given some space to try out things themselves, recognize their own taste, experiment.

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Sia Mitra is a freelance writer and blogger with more than a decade of experience. She has written for most major publications like Femina, Prevention, Complete Well-being, Child, Mother & Baby, Parent & Child, Womens Era, etc.


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