Opinion: The Best Parenting Method Is To Be A Role Model For Our Children

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MustShareMail: Being A Role Model For Our Kids Is Best Parenting Method

We hear of tiger mums, helicopter parenting, boh chap (don’t care) parenting and the most typical one – kiasu parenting! But what is truly the best parenting method?

Recently, a Facebook poll for parents who are concerned about their children’s character caught my attention.
Q: At what age (children) do you think EQ skills, should be taught?

My answer to the FB admin is…NONE of the above.

To me, values are usually caught, rarely taught!

How do we teach empathy? How do we teach honesty?

We cannot teach either. We can only show these values in real actions. It is really up to our children to catch them when the time is ripe!

As a mother of 3 young grown-up children ages 19, 21 and 23 respectively, I took the initiative to go for countless parenting seminars and workshops. While most parents sent their children to enrichment camps amounting to thousands of dollars, I did the opposite. I sent myself as a life-long learner to become a better parent!

One of the first parenting workshops that my hubby and I went to happened when I was struggling to parent our youngest child who was a challenging-two! I lost both hair, patience and resources trying to parent her!

Every Sunday without fail, we would leave our 3 kids at our in-law’s place and head for the parenting workshop for some 8 weeks!

The series of workshops was facilitated by a fellow parent couple and were attended by parents who had little ones like us. One of the couples was expecting their first child!

To show our commitment in building character in our 3 children, both of us also took time off from work and travelled several times to Malacca in Malaysia to attend Character-First training courses!

As a parent of more than 2 decades now, I have come to a simple conclusion regarding parenting.

The best way to parent our children is still the good old method — model parenting.

If we want the kids to be empathetic, show them how empathy looks like that is reflected in our lives. If we want our kids to be honest, show them how honesty looks like too!

Unfortunately, in parenting, there is no magic formulae. There is no secret ingredient. Neither is there any shortcut!

It is all about putting into real actions, wrapped with an overdose of prayers, tears and patience.

For parents and parents-to-be out there… joyful parenting ahead!

Cathie Chew

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Featured image adapted from MindChamps.

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