A Balanced Approach – Parenting Styles (Part 7)

I came across I believe in Miracles and immediately fell in love with every picture of Ava, not because of her looks, but because this child just looks happy all-the-time! I’ve read most of Sharon’s blog post and half of them had me in tears. This women is STRONG, like way STRONG.

Sharon you are an amazing mother and you are now on my list of people I would like to have dinner with.

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A Balanced Approach

When Charlotte approached me to participate in a series of guest pots on her blog about the various parenting styles, I initially agreed and then later regretted it. The problem – I don’t really know what you’d call my/our parenting style. A balancing act I’d guess would probably be the best description. So let me try and explain what I mean.

We have a strict routine and this has been in place since Ava was a new born. It has really worked well for us, especially because I am a planner, I like to know what to expect in a day, when to schedule outings & appointments and apparently, my child seems to appreciate this too. She likes to know when it’s sleep time, when it’s play time, when it’s school time, bath time, bed time etc. I don’t cope well being sleep deprived and neither does my child. We also don’t enjoy those days when she’s over tired and we’re out at a function with a screaming, near impossible almost 2 year old. So routine has worked well for us and I firmly believe that Ava’s routine is also what has made her such an exceptionally good sleeper from a small baby to date, she slept through the night the 1st time at 6 weeks old and did so consistently from 12 weeks old, goes down easily for a nap and bed time. No tantrums or difficult behavior, for which I am most thankful.

I have never read a parenting book – there I said it. I tried, when she was a tiny baby and all they did was stress me out further and make me worry when my baby wasn’t doing what the books said she should be doing. My Dad reminded me that Ava was a baby and she couldn’t read the books and that was like a light bulb moment for me. I packed that parenting book away and we have not looked back. I have preferred to learn to trust my instincts as her mother and allow her to guide me with what she needed and when she needed it.

We’re not overly strict when it comes to things like TV either. I don’t mind her watching TV as long as it’s age appropriate so she does watch either Ceebeebies or Disney Junior daily. What I don’t allow is her being exposed to anything not age appropriate, so you’ll never walk into our home and find the TV blaring MTV or anything like that.

As for discipline, we have a firm approach but I don’t like giving her hidings mostly because it makes me feel bad about me and I feel that it sends a conflicting message to Ava – teaching her it’s bad to hit people but then hitting her as punishment just doesn’t sit well with me. Instead we use the “naughty step” which has so far worked very well, she sits in time out for 2 minutes and then I get down to her level, tell her why she was punished and she is required to apologize. Obviously if she is doing something where she is putting herself in danger and she won’t listen to me, I will give her a smack on the bottom, so I’m not totally against a smack either, I just think there is a time and a place and I don’t want to be one of those parents who is forever shouting and walloping their child.

I also firmly believe that I need to stand by my word when disciplining my child. So if I tell her to stop doing something or xyz will happen, I won’t continue to re-state the warning but will implement whatever the xyz immediately. She must know that I mean what I say.

Because we are raising a girl, its really important to me that she be raised learning self respect and knowing who she is and not what society says she should be. I want to raise a confident and independent young woman and it’s for this reason that my husband and I have what we think is a balanced approach to our parenting style. We are strict and believe in boundaries but try not to take things to ridiculous levels, we don’t sweat the small stuff and try to always look at the bigger picture with the goal of shaping  Ava into a confident, level headed, honest young woman.

Mother and Daughter

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Sharon thank you for doing this post and I’m so with you on the routine. Bed time is a joy with Lorelai.

Hop on over to Sharon’s blog and go show support…

Watch this space as Part 8 of this series will be posted on 28 November 2011. Can you say Clay Jar People?

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Would you want to become apart of an awesome group of bloggers that are doing a secret Santa? If so follow this link before 25 November 2011!

You are invited to join Thingymajiggy’s for a cup of tea and piece of cake, and to view some of the wonderful Kidz only products that we sell. Date 26 November 2011 for more details on Northern Suburbs Cape Town & Southern Suburbs Cape Town.

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One thought on “A Balanced Approach – Parenting Styles (Part 7)

  1. Parenting can be the toughest job you\’ll ever have. Kids present new challenges continuously because they keep growing and changing, and the issues grow and change with them.

    As parents our most important job is to make sure our kids feel loved and valuable for who they are (not what they do). It\’s my biggest struggle, and my biggest joy all at once!

    Like

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