Parenthood need not be a difficult and demanding experience that brings problems, worries and anxiety. One survey by parent trainer, Dr. Harold Minden, found that the responses of hundreds of parents to the question, “How would you rate your parenting experience?” were as follows:
22% answered “fulfilling and positive”
37% answered “moderately fulfilling”
41% answered “frustrating and negative”
Dr. Minden also found that 69% of the satisfied parents said they would enroll in a parent training course, but only 37% of the frustrated and negative parents said they would do so. It appeared they did not recognize the need for assistance in parenting. Those parents typically think that how kids turn out is outside their control–a matter of luck. Many of them rely on the same method of raising children and dealing with problems in their families that were used by their parents and grandparents even though they know these methods don’t work.
We now know without a doubt that parents who take training and learn how to create democratic, non-authoritarian relationships with both their spouses and their children will build happy marriages and create a “new species of children.” Here is a list of the characteristics of this new species:
- They get their own needs get met, yet are sensitive when others may be affected negatively.
- They are very sensitive to all forms of unfairness they see in their world.
- They treat their friends the way they have been treated at home–they are good listeners, good counselors, good at expressing themselves, good at solving problems, and good at resolving conflicts with others.
- They are mature for their age, fun-loving, playful.
- They want their needs met, yet are unselfish, altruistic and giving to others.
- They have less need to be dependent on other people–yet they have friendships and make friends easily.
- They are less afraid of being laughed at, less afraid of what people will say, more individualistic.
- They are relatively unfrightened by the unknown, and they don’t just cling to the familiar.
- They have a high degree of self-acceptance–accepting the way they are, yet this somehow frees them to change and improve themselves.
Raising children who develop these characteristics takes time and commitment. There’s no gimmick or quick way to do it. Parents who take the time to understand and then put what they learn into practice are richly rewarded, usually far beyond their hopes and expectations.