- Learn what kids need and how to parent effectively
By Peter K.
Member NSRC Experts Council
Clicking links below will open a full window or an informational popup,
so please turn off your brow-ser's
popup blocker or allow popups from this nonprofit, ad-free Web site.
This is one of a series of articles in Lesson 6
- learn what typical kids need as they grow, and how to fill their needs
effectively over two decades without neglecting yourself.
This article assumes you're familiar with...
Premises - most U.S. parents are
Without admitting and correcting these, they unintentionally
wounds and unawareness to their kids. This ancestral bequest is silent,
lethal, and spreading in our society because of the public's wounds, unawareness, and
From this perspective, effective (vs. good or bad) parents want to...
intentionally study and discuss the
topics in this
admit and proactively reduce any
psychological wounds (Lesson 1);
make three wise
make wise child-conception and/or
commit to co-creating a
family for themselves and heir kids;
learn and ,monitor each young child's
developmental and special needs; and...
place steady high priority on guarding
minor kids and grandkids from inheriting ancestral [wounds +
The range of major U.S.
suggests that most U.S. parents are failing at
this, and that the public condones this failure. Do you agree?
Since the early 1980's, fresh perspectives on "effective parenting" have
emerged from the U.S. Inner child / Adult Child / Dysfunctional
Family movement. The ideas below reflect this. The ideas are
offered as food for thought and discussion, not rigid absolutes.
In this Web site, "a parent" is anyone who
has ongoing responsibility for protecting, guiding, and nurturing
a minor child toward adult independence over time. In this sense,
or stepparent is a role (a set of
goals, responsibilities, and rules),
person. Ideally, men and women who choose the
role of parent (and grandparent)
find ongoing satisfaction in trying to fill the dynamic needs of each child in their
care as well as their own needs.
consistently guides dependent
children toward eventually...
developing a well-functioning
led by an unhindered
leaving home with tolerable anxiety, and becoming...
a balanced, healthy, self-responsible, self-nurturing, "happy,"
productive adult and citizen, who may choose to...
become a satisfied mate and an
effective parent themselves.
This two-decade process involves filling a mosaic of
changing physical, emotional,
needs in each growing child
("nurturing"), and helping them develop over 20 things like
those below. Option - after you read the list, reread it and rank-order each goal's importance
in your situation - e.g.
H(igh), M(edium), or L(ow). These
sample goals are not ranked or ordered.
Healthy Parenting Goals
of these goals you agree with, which you'd redefine, and which don't fit for you.
Also: which of these did you get? Give? Which evoke the strongest feelings
in you? Why? Discussing these with your family adults
can be very helpful.
Patiently (a) model and encourage each child's awareness of
and the dyna-mics
and (b) teach them the concepts and words to help them think about and
describe these awarenesses accurately.
2) Instill a clear, healthy
sense of personal identity and
"This is who I am; what I like,
need, believe, and hope for; and how and where I differ from you." This
parenting goal includes develop-ing the child's abilities to clearly say "No,"
"Yes," "Stop," and "I want and need..."
anxiety, guilt, or shame, and with respect for other peoples' equal
rights and boundaries;
3) Instill the unshakable
belief "I am
valuable, unique, and important in the world, simply because I'm
Me. I matter!" Effective parents help kids to value their own worth, dignity, wants, needs,
ideas, dreams, and feelings as being just as important as (not more important than)
any other person's.
This implies patiently helping each small child, who first feels weak,
"dumb," clumsy, and depen-dent, to eventually replace their normal feelings of
shame, inadequacy, and self-doubt with healthy self respect and realistic
self confidence. Did your parents do that for you?;
4) Instill healthy core values that the child grows to
understand, believe, can name, and uses as guides for
safe, satisfying daily living and growth. These may include honesty, diligence; courage; crea-tivity;
Self care is good; respect my Self and others equally; sensitivity; balance work, play,
and rest daily; honor; try new things; nurture myself, others, and our Earth; and many more...
Goal 5) Build kids' trust...
in their own perceptions
that caregivers, most authorities, and true friends will
consistently support (vs. attack, use, abuse, or ignore) them.
This implies learning how to discipline kids firmly and lovingly;
and build their trust...
that the world is generally safe, where there's
This parenting goal also includes developing a
child’s abilities to (a) decide "Who merits my trust?," and
(b) to act on that, without undue
fear, anxiety, or shame. A common psychological wound is an
inability to trust wisely, and not knowing that or how to
6) Effective parents develop each childs...
awareness and appreciation of their unique
talents and limitations; and their...
motivation and ability to keep developing these
gifts on their
own, and to...
use them productively in the world
and enjoy the results.
7) Help kids grow...
a healthy, realistic self-image, and...
realistic self confidence, based on the
growing skills, achievements, and limitations;
And over time, effective
parents strive to,,.
8) Help kids to accept
their inevitable limitations and failures without undue frustration, guilt, or shame,
and to learn to see most "mistakes" as chances to learn. And they
9) Encourage kids to grow steady
faith that (a) their life has real meaning, definable purposes, and attainable objectives,
and that (b) there is a benign (vs. conditionally-loving or punitive)
universe providing reliable guidance and support in times of trouble and peace;
10) Help children grow
include: (a) the art of comfortably giving and receiving merited praise, and
(b) noticing and managing
here shows how to do this essential task;
Goal 11) Grow kids'
in their personal uniqueness and achieve-ments, and equally
valuing and accepting of these in others. This implies that an effective parent
doesn't require their child to be a clone or god/ess;
permission to clearly express current thoughts, feelings, and needs
- with dis-cretion, and without undue anxiety,
teaching a child how to...
13) feel, manage,
and safely express emotions like
confusion, lust, embarrassment and shame, frustration, guilt, sorrow, and hurt;
and teaching them to
Grow their ability
inevitable life losses (broken bonds) well, on all
three levels. Most adults weren't
taught how to do this, which is why
parents help their kids grow...
Interest in, and reverence for, our biosphere (vs. abuse or indifference); and
grow the motivation and
abilities to (c) learn how the world works, and to (d) apply their learnings
constructively, within their limits; and...
Goal 16) Instill appreciation
and healthy self-care of their mind, spirit, and body, no matter what it's
form. This includes learning and Self-motivated practice of healthy personal hygiene,
nutrition, and bal-anced rest, work, and exercise; and...
17) Instill the abilities
to socialize and cooperate willingly and harmoniously with selected others, without
18) Seek and
accept help when needed, without resentment or feeling like an imposer, wimp,
or weakling; and to...
with nurturing others, based on mutual love, trust, re-spect,
and support rather than neediness, fear, control, or power. This goal includes nurturing each
child's ability to exchange true
intimacy, which depends partly on
courage to risk rejection and
And an effective parent tries to...
20) Help kids accept and appreciate themselves as
and sexual beings, and consistently
behaviors and limits in each
Goal 21) Help kids be clear on what masculinity
and femininity are in themselves and others in their culture, and to be comfortable with their own
and gender preference. This
implies helping each child to learn "What do (healthy) grown women and men do in
many situations, and how do I get to be like that safely?";
22) See that
each child gets the best general and special education available, and learns
to love learning. "Education" includes learning how to manage money and
debts, manage a home and vehicle, and find and keep a rewarding job and/or
clear on the process, responsibilities, realities, and joys
and/or parenting children; and (b) grow a high integrity and commitment to raising their
own kids (if any) toward many of these long-term parenting goals.
24) Adults in typical multi-home
have many extra adult and
child adjustment needs to identify and
juggle. Effective parents
will want to study, adapt, and apply Lessons 1 thru 7 before their
25) The overarching
goals of effective parents are to patiently guide each child's
to (a) trust the
make effective life decisions, and to (b) let go of depending on others'
ruling subselves to make their decisions for them. This is the core of
developing genuine adult self-responsibility, and the
essence of what it means to "grow up." Resta-ted:
effective parents guard their
children against developing false-self
+ + +
Have you ever seen such specific
child-nurturance targets in one place before? How do
you feel? Would you edit or delete any of them? If you rewrote this list and made it yours,
you'd have the draft of a valuable parenting
to guide you and to tell others what you're trying to do
as a responsible parent.
These sample goals apply to any child-caretaker, including grandparents,
aunts, uncles, sitters, nannies, day-care facilitators, clergy, coaches,
counselors, and classroom teachers.
Option: review the list, and rank order them in importance - e.g. most
important > moderately important > least important.
Reflect - how many of these 25 goals did
you get consistently as a young child and teen?
__ less than 10 __ 10
to 15 __ more than 15. How has that affected you as an adult?
How many of these goals are you and
your family adults pursuing intentionally with your young people now?
__ less than 10 __ 10
to 15 __ more than 15.
If your family adults need to upgrade your
parenting goals, what
do you need to change - specifically?
The list of caregiving
goals above illustrate why family-life
experts believe effective parenting is among the toughest, most important, and
rewarding of all human endeavors. This im-portance is magnified, because every
grown child impacts a great fan of hundreds of people in their and later generations.
What do you suppose
children who dont get consistent, loving adult help (nurturance) to
meet their developmental needs and these goals? Do you know
anyone who didn't get
This is one of a series of Web articles devoted to exploring effective
parenting, which is the key to
the lethal [wounds + unawareness]
on typical kids' developmental needs, the arti-cle proposes 25 specific goals that
informed caregivers can work towards to
evolve a Grown Nurtured Child (GNC).
Achieving these goals is most likely if all family adults and supporters
have studied and dis-cussed
Keep studying Lesson 6!
Pause, breathe, and reflect - why did you read this article? Did you get
what you needed? If not, what
you need? Who's
these questions - your
Prior page /
/ Lesson-6 links
site intro /
April 30, 2013