Raising Kids With Good Expectations

Raising kids with expectations isn’t always a bad thing.

I’m pretty sure that one thing that all of us parents can relate on is that raising children is not easy, at all, in any way shape or form. It’s a challenge every single day in our household as I’m sure it is for any other household that has a child or children ruling it.

From birth, they take control of what seems like every little thing and us, the adults have no control over any of it.

Am I right or am I right??

It’s kind of sad really.. and I’m totally not judging at all! I am SO guilty… hahaha we really have to laugh.

To get a little more serious, if you wanna ( take this with a grain of salt). We all parent differently and we all do what we feel works best for us, our kids, and a family as a whole. Instead of judging one another and causing hurt feelings and resentment, I think it’s best that we find some humor in these situations and then get down to bid-ness and help each other.

We can all agree that children that have high expectations in the wrong areas are pretty difficult.. right? And people with high expectations in the real world don’t look so good hunnay. What do I mean by “in the wrong areas?”

Well, first of all, I think the number one high expectation that children these days have is that they expect to be constantly tended to.

Aaaaand us adults keep unintentionally enabling it!! No, just no. We gotta stop.

I am just as guilty…

I am learning though, as my oldest turned 6 this year that these high expectations are fricken stressful for us who are opposite and don’t have high expectations..ie., us parents who grew up with like nothing in comparison.

My kids dad and I both grew up pretty similar.

We were both out of this world to have one little toy to play with in our tiny bedrooms that we shared with our siblings that had nothing but a bed and a dresser. I was lucky if I had any adult interaction.

But that’s besides the point..

It’s called imagination and it’s one thing our children these days are starting to lack! Its so sad and I notice it in my very own kids! My kids can’t even handle sitting still waiting for an order to go. Nope, it always a shirt show up in the restaurant.

Part of the reason why we just stopped trying all together.

Well, jordan gave up mostly… he will go if it’s a super laid back place and it’s super late so there’s bound to be no one there.. haha I, on the other hand try to brace myself and go with my mom or a friend at times.

Every time I leave disappointed and honestly I don’t even know why I keep trying.

Being a stay at home mom is rough, guys! Add on being a maid, chef, full laundromat service, nanny, teacher, discipliner.. the list goes on I think we all know where I’m going with that.

Anyways, back to imagination. I’m just gonna say it even though im kinda sorta ashamed of it

My older kids both have their own bedrooms FULL of toys, and somehow when they are all alone they just lack imagination! I have such a hard time sympathizing

because I had way less and found way more to do. Anyone else??

I know electronics is a given. We give them to our children for not only our sanity to be left alone for 5 gosh darn minutes, but in reality electronics are being pushed down their throats in every aspect when you think about it. I’m not saying they are all bad, because they aren’t! They are actually extremely helpful in some situations.

Now, I get it that the schools are just keeping up to date with the times and technically is definitely useful in many many aspects especially specific to learning. (Which seems to be a little off considering that it can be used as such a downfall too) what I have a problem with is that during free times or (choice time) at school now, instead of playing with others, with a toy, or doing something hands on, kids are now being offered the option to play with tablets.. in kindergarten.

That’s where the high expectation of “fill my time” comes in.

They need to know that the real world doesn’t work like that. Someday we may have no electricity and phones and tablets won’t charge, and guess what? I kinda feel like everyone will be terrified because they don’t know how to interact with each other. It breaks my heart because I have always been a social butterfly and I can even say that having an iPhone is so distracting from my social life.

When I’m standing in line at the store, at a restaurant waiting for food, at the local jump place watching our kids play, at the park, everywhere we go we are constantly pushing away our social personality. I know I’m not the only one doing it either because I look around and see everyone doing the same thing.

Don’t get me wrong, we all have days where , “lord help me don’t let anyone talk to me today”,

But being that way daily and forcing our kids to be that way too is so not gonna be good someday. I don’t think so anyway.. correct me if I am wrong. Especially if we’re all doing it.

It sucks for someone like me though, who sometimes likes to be social but can’t find anyone friendly enough to be social with. Maybe it’s not that they aren’t friendly per say, but maybe they just don’t know how to communicate properly and were never taught that.

That’s why being a parent we are responsible for encouraging our children to be social. I have one child that is super social and one that’s super shy with everyone besides us.

Getting my shy child to open up to one of my friends and just saying hi can be so rough sometimes.

But, I feel like because he’s my oldest I kinda take blame and blame myself for always allowing certain things, like giving him the tablet as a means to keep him quiet and entertained.

That wasn’t the best move for us, but sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do!

I have seen the effects of not having any other social interactions outside of the home has effected him and even I know from never being able to leave the house because, well, kids. So, I started to try to make the changes with my daughter. She seems to handle those things way differently.

Ever since I noticed this change with my son about a year and a half ago I started to not allow electronics as much and have started to use it as a reward instead of a time filler. (Obviously time filler is SO necessary In some circumstances).

We have noticed a huge change.

Yes our kids “bug” or get on our nerves more when they don’t have something constantly occupying their attentions. some days are irritating and I have to raise my voice, ok yell.. I yell and tell them to go away sometimes.. and I always feel guilty for that.

But then I remember that us parents totally deserve that 5 minutes in the bathroom ALONE. We deserve to eat that snickers bar without feeling obligated to share a few bites, I think so anyway.

So, here we go!

My own experience with raising kids with good expectations:

Create boundaries with your kids.

Allow rules in your house and be firm about enforcing them. Kids need to be reminded a daily who the boss is and that doesn’t always have to be discipline. Yes we discipline in our house but it’s not always effective For every situation. Most of the time a sit down conversation with mom or dad explaining the entirety of the situation works best for our kids. Like I said before you know what’s best for you and your family.

We need to teach our kids that it’s ok to be bored and to have nothing to do. Sometimes our brains out at our best work during those times! Encourage them to find joy in playing outside with nothing, and building 100+ piece puzzles. Those little things are so precious to their innocence.

Although, sometimes our kids NEED to see life through our eyes to understand things a little more clearer because truth is our young kids are a lot smarter than most would like to give them credit for. It’s our job to prepare them for reality but at the at the same time you have to be selective with what you expose to them. Stick with your gut.

Teach your kids as best as you can that we are all allowed to be our true self.

Opinions, beliefs, and who we are internally and externally is what makes us all unique! Life would really suck if we were all the same!

Be there for your kids emotionally, too.

Let it be known that all of the emotions they feel are very real, and help them through them. Don’t ever let them feel alone. Don’t encourage them to shut those feelings out and encourage them to be themselves by always being yourself. You are their idol.

Life is hard for so many of us on a daily basis. I know it sounds so cliche but nothing in life is easy or fair. We should stop trying to prove to our kids that it is.

Prove to your children that you don’t and won’t ever always get your way.

It’s ok to tell them no every once in awhile. Obviously none of us want to be that mom that’s always the bear of bad news but we have to remember that we are their parents first, friends second.

Their ultimate well-being in the long run should be our main goal.

Most importantly, allow them to be kids and don’t force them to grow up so quickly. The world we have conformed to has such high expectations on how children need to be constantly entertained. That gets so exhausting for us parents.

We need to just stop it, and let go of all expectations together. Just go with it.

All in all, the best we can do is our best.

I encourage you mommy or daddy, to take a day or even 30 minutes to yourself this week, make that every week eventually every day. (I realize baby steps are necessary). No excuses—you gotta do it.

Whether that be reading a book or just taking a bath in some peace and quiet.. heck maybe you will be lucky and go grocery shopping alone! Lol whatever it is treat yourself to some “me” time and remember that kids will be kids and raising them is messy messy messy. But worth it? More than anything in this world.

Truth is though, when mama ain’t happy ain’t nobody happy. I think we can all attest to that. Take care of yourself mama.

Love,

Mama in Grace

P.S. I don’t think I have ever heard of one story where motherhood and parenting went easy, for anyone. So let’s not judge one another. If you have heard of a perfect one though, I’m interested to read. Don’t be shy to post:)

    7 Comments

  1. yes! totally agree! my 6 yr old expects to be entertained all the time and complains he has nothing to do or play with (he has a room overflowing with toys) I used to play by myself all the time as a kid, he just can’t do it. it’s sad how little imagination today’s kids can have sometimes bc they always want the phone or tv or iPad. and agree, I’m social too and it’s so hard when everyone is glued to their phones to actually connect with another person. I wish it was different!

    Reply

    • Courtney Ferguson

      Yes!! I am so glad I’m not alone! Like I said, I think electronics can be used for the good for sure! And I don’t think they are a complete bad thing.. ultimately we just need to encourage more of a social atmosphere for our children instead of a personal and closed off one.

      Reply

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  4. I agree with you. My own kids are older. But I see this all the time with my step-children. Why can’t a family go to the restaurant and talk to each other instead of each being on their cell phones? Why can’t we say “no running in our house” and expect them to listen (and their parents enforce it instead of looking at us like we did something wrong). I was brought up knowing how to behave in public and in other people’s houses and that there are different rules for grandma’s house, my fancy aunt’s house and my own house. And why do parents justify allowing their toddler and preschooler and even older kids to watch movies on their cell phones “because that is the only way he will behave”. When will they learn how to behave and socialize?

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  5. And I forgot to ask. I am a beginning blogger trying to figure this blogging thing out. I would like to join your group on Pinterest. I have a lot more articles than posted on my site-they are in draft form because I keep editing and editing. I have to learn to be faster and know that I will miss some spelling error or incomplete sentence.

    I am trying to figure out how to get people to find my blog and Pinterest was suggested. And joining group boards similar to your own. So that is how I found you.

    Thank you so much!!

    Reply

    • Courtney Ferguson

      Hey there! thank you for coming to my page and reaching out! 🙂 i just added you to my mommy board on pinterest, welcome!!

      Reply

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