Every parent wants the best for their children. That does not mean that parents always know what is best for their children. For most parents, their first revelation about parenting is they need help. They learn that something that looks so simple is one of the hardest tasks they will ever undertake in their lives. Every day there seems to be a new twist to parenting. Just when parents think the corner has been turned for the better, some bizarre, terrifying, mind boggling, or unexpected something smacks them upside the head. Even when they are lucky enough to learn how to muddle through and get by, there is often a lingering feeling that something is missing or there is something they should be doing as a parent that they are neglecting. As a result, parents look for advice on how to raise their children; they seek help from their parents and grandparents, they listen to friends, and they read just about everything they can find that will make them a better parent.
Book stores devote whole sections to “how to guides” for parents. There are guides on how to be a better parent, guides for reading with children, guides for teaching children responsibility, guides for connecting with children, guides for conflict management, and the topics go on and on. Everyone who has ever been a kid, had a kid, or carries a PhD in kid and adolescent psychology has a theory, opinion or insight into the mystery of how and why children think and act as they do. Most of these guides offer parents sound advice on how to deal with the day-to-day challenges and surprises of raising children, but unfortunately, these guides also often leave out key information. The reasons behind the omissions could be debated at length, but suffice it to say most often the reasons lie in the author’s core beliefs (The book is secular in tone, and anything spiritual is avoided) or in the economics of the author’s wallet (The author is saving the information, so parents can dish out another $29.95 for the author’s next book).
However, there are no politically correct strings or monetary motivation attached to this article; the sole purpose is to provide parents with the information the parenting guides do not always tell them or won’t tell them. Hopefully, the list below will elicit a smile, offer some insight into kids, or maybe cause reflection on the parent/ child relationship. After all, parents want what is best for their children, and for that to happen, they need all the help they can get.
12 Things about Kids the Parenting Guides Won’t Tell You
- Kids are God’s way of telling adults they are not in control;
- Kids enter pre-school/kindergarten on fire to learn. It is the parents’ and teachers’ responsibility to keep that flame burning throughout the child’s school career;
- Kids and dogs are about love and a perpetual financial commitment;
- Naps are more for parents than for kids. Parents need the down time to replenish their batteries more than kids who run on EverReady;
- Kids have the capacity to learn any language introduced to them, but yet, they can’t understand what “No” means;
- When a kid ignores you, it is not personal; there are other things on his mind – like himself;
- There is no life after kids; they never go away;
- A kid’s first addiction is chocolate milk;
- Kids are internally wired to embarrass parents every chance they get;
- Never ever eat anything off a kid’s plate;
- From birth to the age of 25, the funniest thing in the world to a kid is passing gas; and
- Kids are God’s way of telling parents life is worth living.
JL ©Jack Linton, September 13, 2014