As parents, we are the biggest role models for our kids. And actions always speak louder than words, so kids will learn by example much more so than by what we tell them. There are plenty of things we need to think about modeling for our kids, but in my opinion, the best gift we can possibly give to our kids is to model for them how people who love and respect each other are supposed to treat each other. Of course, this would require two parents who are both very conscious about what that means, which is many times not the case.
In my house, that is clearly not the case, and that has been eating away at me over the years. If I could go back in time and choose a spouse who understands that a healthy relationship requires mutual respect and admiration, trust, having each other’s back, presenting a united front and supporting each other in front of the kids, listening to each other, compromise, sometimes putting your partner’s needs and happiness above your own, and so on, then maybe I would. But I can’t. So now I am worried that my kids will not have the skills and understanding that is necessary to have healthy relationships. I certainly hope they can learn by example of what not to do, but I am not going to hold my breath on that thought. I do talk to them about all of these things, but it is difficult to teach them without a partner who can model them with me.
I’m not perfect, and I don’t always follow my own advice, but I am at least aware of that and am consciously trying to make improvements where I can. With any luck, the kids actually ARE listening to me and will remember at least some of the advice I have shared with them about what I think is necessary for a healthy relationship. Hopefully, they appreciate my perspective, at least a little bit. I hope you will appreciate my perspective as well, since I will be sharing that advice and more in posts to come. Stay tuned!
Hello All! Leon here….
Parents ARE role models to their children. From my perspective, with two boys, I am the forefront of being their role model. Not only do I want to show the kids how my wife and I should respect each other in our relationship, but I feel that it’s imperative to show them how to act as part of the male species, and in turn show them how to act as men. I’m showing and telling them what is the proper way to present themselves in this manner. I have my bad days. My guard fails at times (as anyone with a significant other can attest to), but I try to maintain respect for my wife at all times. For example, I don’t argue with my wife in front of the kids. And I try not to say anything bad about my wife in front of the kids. There has been a few times when I did, and I immediately apologized. Never put your kids in a situation where they feel they need to choose a side (a topic for a future blog).
Men, take my words into consideration while raising your boys. Show your wife the respect she deserves and that will seep into your little men. That lesson alone will go a long way in bringing up respectable young men.
Whether you know it or not, your kids are looking at what you are doing ALL THE TIME. What you do, reflects on what they do. Have you ever muttered the words, “OMG. I’m turning into my mother/father!” I know you have! That’s proof that your parents’ behaviors affected you. So know that you are affecting your kids….They are watching!