Respecting Kids Making Decisions

Choices, Choices, Choices…

Believe it or not, children need to make choices too. If we want our kids to grow up being knowledgeable, mature and independent, plus confident, we need to sometimes treat them that way. Let them pick what they want to wear, what they want to eat, all the while encouraging them to do the essential thing like “Eat your vegetables” or “You can’t wear a tank top in the middle of winter”. It’s very important to teach our kids to be independent in making some decisions themselves because it is these basics that form their self esteem.

Many could argue that it is this kind of behaviour that results in children being spoiled or lacked in discipline. This depends on the degree to which you allow your child to make choices. For example, if you ask your son to pack up his racing cars after he is done playing with them and he does not want to, then you can be flexible by allowing him to ignore you one or two off, but then firmly saying “pick up your racing cars please” and persist until he does as most kids will test their parents’ patience. But then also, there is nothing wrong with a child picking what kind of t-shirt he would like to wear that day; the orange one or the blue one? Yes it may not match his jeans or his shorts, but picking what he wants to wear just shows his taste and what he is interested in. There is no point in making your child unhappy because they won’t pick the top YOU want them to wear.

Let them be spontaneous. Let them choose their toys they want to purchase sometimes. If it is not age appropriate then we can explain to them why it is not okay to play with that toy and that he or she can have it when they are older.

Many times we come across parents who are so persistent that besides their child constantly looking unhappy, the parents are also always unhappy because everything literally is not going the way the parent wants it. But children have different imaginations and different tastes; two brothers can be totally different in this sense. One can like fighting cartoons and games, so will prompt to more action figures and clothing with their logos or pictures printed on them, whereas the other sibling may be the opposite and like trains, furry animals and prefer stuffed animals and a day at the zoo or watching more calm and soothing TV programs for children.

We should respect our child’s right to making some decisions and be cautious to not smother them. It can result in damage to their self-esteem and confidence which in return can pull ours down dramatically as our life revolves around the reason for us living…our kids.