Child for Sale

liefde voor kindEven though I don’t have children myself , the question is on my mind: What would be a loving way to raise a child? I asked it to a dear friend of mine who is the mother of a very special child. She will give her tips on how to raise a child in these days next week.

How are you getting along with children? Especially when they are your own? Do you think you need to control them? Do you think they need to do what you ask them to do? Do you consider them actually as yours?  This is not about giving the right answer. This is about having an honest look at what you are thinking. Please take a moment to consider this before you read any further…

I think we all recognize this. We, each in our own way, want to control our kids, at school, at home and on the streets. What do you figure gives you the right to do so?  Do you justify this conviction by the thought that kids can’t take care of themselves yet? And as soon as a child is expressing its own will, how is it for you to end up in a battle? “Clean up your room!”, “Finish your plate!”, “Go to bed!” You can use your prevalence as a grown-up to impose your will. Not only to children though. This is what happens between adults constantly. Would you like to know what I think about that?

-This is a form of violence which is never justified–

Nevertheless I think it needs but a little twist in attitude: What if it merely is our duty as parent, caregiver and teacher, to SUPPORT the child? To help it to develop in such a way that it truly can shine like a star! Intuitively a child knows what it needs and when your intentions are loving. Then it will happily turn to you and follow, especially in situations that seem to be unfamiliar. When it wants to make an other choice then what you had in mind, are you ready to trust that this is the right decision for him or her? How do you deal with that since we have rules and regulations all over the place at school, at home and anywhere else?

Remember that these rules are made to help the child in its development and in its experience of being secure. These rules are not there for the sake of blindly following them when they don’t serve the child. When a child wants something that is not in line with what you want, consider this:

  • Are your guidelines clear to the child? (otherwise it is hard to follow them)
  • Is it possible to let the child do it’s thing within the guidelines you gave?
  • Would it be time to change your guidelines?
  • Would it be time to offer the child an other place where other guidelines apply? (for example playing outside instead of inside)

As adults we often think we know what a child needs. I dare you to stop telling a child what it needs and let the child tell you instead. Respect its timing. Give it space to develop in such a way that it can do what it came for. Every child is here to bring something unique. This is his/ her gift to you. By not imposing your ideas, the child can offer it to you in its purest form.

I already revealed many of next weeks tips. In the meantime I wish you a lot of fun in all the encounters that you have with the children around you. And if it doesn’t work out, you can still sell your child…