Behavior Info. – Do Others’ Opinions Really Matter?

Becoming a parent for the first time is a daunting experience for both mothers and fathers. Questions such as, “How will we discipline our child?” will no doubt be dinner time conversation for a lot of expectant couples. Nobody is born a ‘good parent’, but is something that you can develop with time, experience and patience. When faced with impending parenthood, it is very comforting to turn to the wealth of behavior info that is available to new parents today.

The variety of child behavior info for parents includes magazines, books, your own parents and doctors or psychologists, all with their own opinions about the best way to raise your child. More recent on the behavior info menu are parenting websites, often with web blogs where parents can discuss their worries and concerns with other parents, sharing their advice and their experiences.

All the above sources of behavior info are useful and there is no harm in seeking advice from any, or all of them. However, they should not be a substitute for your own ideas, beliefs and instincts. You have a unique bond with your child and ultimately you are best placed to decide what is best for that child. You know in intimate detail their individual personality traits and the way in which they respond to different situations.

There are two main rules to follow when determining your approach to raising your child which are consistency and fairness. Inconsistency in your child’s upbringing, especially as regards discipline, will be confusing for them and may decrease their respect for you. Fairness should also be applied to your methods. For example when a child has done something wrong the way you discipline them should be related to their actions where possible, and should be in proportion to what they have done. As long as these two factors are maintained, your ideas on how to raise your children are the most important. None of the behavior info available is able to tell you exactly how you should do that.

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