Creative Child

Debunking Myths About Positive Parenting - Myth #1: Just Friends?

by Rebecca Eanes


3. I’m not the kind of friend who bubble-wraps them and protects them from all failure and struggle. 

I’ll discuss this more in a future post about helicoptering, but again, this is really not my idea of friendship. I want friends who encourage me to reach for the stars and listen compassionately when I fall. It can certainly be uncomfortable to see children fail at something that was important to them. My gut says to protect them, but I know that failure is a part of life. I don’t always protect them from the fall; I just provide a soft landing.

Let me be clear about what kind of friend I AM:

1. I am the kind of friend who listens.

When they tell me about their Lego creation (again), I make a point to be engaged and actively listening. I listen when they tell me stories or when they share fears. I listen to dreams and Batman storylines. I know if I listen now, they’ll still want to talk to me later. I’m a friend they can trust.

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2. I am the kind of friend who respects.

We are not equal in age and maturity, but we are equal in humanity. I’ll treat my children with fairness and integrity. I’ll respect their dignity and their spirits.

3. I’m the kind of friend who accepts.

I will not accept all of their behaviors, but I always accept them. They don’t have to win my love. They can never lose it. I accept their flaws and imperfections because I have them, too. I see their beauty, goodness, and worth. Always.

I’m not just a friend.

My relationship with my children transcends beautifully beyond the boundaries of friendship. I am their teacher and guide, and that means I’m in a position of authority, yet I know that without a connected relationship, a deep trust and respect for one another, I can have no real authority.

This aspect of friendship is one beautiful thread in the tapestry of our parent/child relationship. Don’t try to unravel it by pulling just the one thread. There is so much more. I am so much more. My children will have many friends throughout their lives, but they will only ever have one mother. Our relationship is entirely unique, and I’m proud to say that friendship is a part of it.

Up next in this series is a startling and completely untrue myth! Read on for this one debunked! Myth #2: Positive Parents Don’t Discipline

Related Article: Communicating Positively with Children

Rebecca Eanes, is the founder of and creator of Positive Parenting: Toddlers and Beyond. She is the bestselling author of 3 books. Her newest book,Positive Parenting: An Essential Guide, is more than a parenting book, it's a guide to human connection. She has also written The Newbie's Guide to Positive Parentingand co-authored the book, Positive Parenting in Action: The How-To Guide to Putting Positive Parenting Principles in Action in Early ChildhoodShe is the grateful mother to 2 boys.


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