Parenting is more than “raising” children. Parenting requires the adults in the child’s life deliver at the right place, the right time in the appropriate quality and quality resources to meet physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual needs of a developing human being. When these need are not effectively met, the child has to compensate for the child is driven to grown by the automatic programming of the DNA in their bodies. No matter how much they want Santa Claus to show up at Christmas, they will not stay a child, forever.
Parent Role: Every person carries with them an internal working model of himself or herself as a parent. Just as them, “how did your mother or father parent you?” This model reflects their parental goals and the internalized expectations of others generally gained in their own childhood, but some ideas may also have been acquired through culture. Using this model as a screen between themselves and their children, the person measures the benefits and the harm confronting them as the parent. Stress results from the appraisal of what ‘should be” versus “what is.”
Being a parent requires the adults in the child’s life be capable of taking on the role of caretaker, teacher, and mentor as the child grown from infant into early adulthood.
Care taker: The physical needs of the child’s body and mind; proper nutrition, rest, exercise, shelter, clothing, medical, and protection from harm.
Teachers: Teachers explain the culture to the student. They tell the child why things happen and how things work. A teacher represents a body of knowledge either accumulated from previous study or by life experiences. The teacher share their information, expertise, and experience with the student. Parents are models of appropriate behavior. Children learn parenting by imitating the parents. If you respect your child, they will intern respect you. If you show love to them, they will intern show love to you.
Mentor: The final phase of the parental role is guiding the child into adulthood. The parent attempts to smooth the way for the child to finally enter the ranks of adult peers while at the same time permitting the child to have their own personal struggle of finding their place in the circle of society. Parenthood does not equal fatherhood plus motherhood. For many parents this task is extremely difficult, especially if younger children are still in the house. How doe we take our hands off of the steering wheel and permit the child to drive their own lives? The parent who is in good standing with the child will stand off to the side and learn to be the cheer leader, and coach.