This is a sponsored blog; while the views expressed here were genuinely mine, consideration was paid to me by the Delaware Department of Health.
We all want to be great parents! Did you know all great parents basically do the same thing? We all just really want to do right by our kids. Read on for ten things great parents do.
Show respect and give it
This is something we've really been working on in our house. We talk about respect a lot and it's important that we respect our kids, too.
All of those little things that seem so unimportant are really important to our kids when they're in the middle of it. To me, it may not seem like a big deal right now, but it is to them and I want them to know they are heard and that we are listening.
Teaching kids to be independent seems like it is so much harder than when I was growing up. We were left along (any other latch key kids?) and were expected to do more than we expect our kids to do now. That said, there are plenty of things that kids can do on their own or with a little guidance: laundry, cleaning their rooms, dishes, helping in the kitchen, and other little tasks like dressing themselves and showering.
Show unconditional love
My mother has always said that she'll stand by my sister and I no matter how stupid our mistake is. I'd like to believe we'd do the same for our kids. We've had some behavioral problems with Charlie lately and something we keep reminding him is that we love him, even if we're not happy about the behavioral choices he's making. At the end of the day, he needs to know he is loved, unconditionally.
Say what you mean and mean what you say
Kids have big feelings and don't always know what to do with them. This is something that has been discussed a ton in our house recently. We need to remind kids that their words can hurt others and that's why it's important to only say what we really mean.
Lead by example
My husband and I do our best to lead by example. We volunteer, share chores, and show each other love. Our kids are watching us all the time, whether we realize it or not.
Preach patience and perseverance
As an adult, it's hard to be patient for things we want. So obviously, as a child, it's even harder. Teaching kids patience shows them that waiting can be worth it. And that we sometimes have to work really hard for what we want – and that it doesn't come right away.
Tom and I are both back in college right now. We are definitely preaching that perseverance is important and that hard work will help us achieve our goals.
We live in a society that is so focused on all the “things”. We do family movie nights a few times a month and always have family dinner. Putting focus on the time spent together instead of all the stuff is a big deal for us.
Set realistic expectations
Each child is unique and that is all so very true in our own household with just our two kids. We try to be clear and consistent with our expectations for the kids, while ditching the all or nothing concept. I was talking to another mom last week and we were discussing how it can be hard to change our expectations for our child – to realize that our goals for them may never come to be. But the truth is, adjusting down to those realistic goals and expectations is freeing and will make everyone stress less.
There are so many things that can fall under “support”. We support our kids by attending all of their school functions, soccer games, karate practice, and are always there to cheer them on whenever they need it.
Great parents are always trying to do what's best for their kids. Whether that means feeding them the right foods, fighting for what they need academically, or keeping them healthy – we're all just trying to do right by our kids.
One of the ways we support our children's health is by vaccinating.
Charlie is approaching his pre-teens and that means we're thinking about another vaccine. The HPV vaccine is recommended for girls AND BOYS age 11 or 12.
And because as parents, we need easy: It can be given during the same visit that your child gets vaccinated for other serious diseases, like meningitis and whooping cough.
The CDC also reports that since the vaccine was approved 10 years ago, infections that are caused by HPV cancers have dropped nearly 71 percent among teen girls and fewer women are developing pre-cancers that could lead to cervical cancer.
Talk to your health care provider — or your child’s — today about the HPV vaccine. Visit HealthyDelaware.org/HPVPrevention for more information.