Parenting Rules You Might End Up Breaking – And Why It’s Okay
We’ve all done it – we see other parenting styles or decisions and create a list of parenting rules we swear we will never break. Because of course, if we stick to these rules, we will raise the perfect child or be the perfect parent, right? *insert laughter here.
While you may be able to stand your ground on a few of your most important rules, others may go straight out the window once you are actually a parent – and that’s totally okay!
Here are some common “I would never” parenting rules that you may end up breaking and how to adjust these promises to be more attainable in real life.
I will never give my kids junk food.
Sometimes what your kids eat isn’t under your control or you might find yourself lenient in certain situations once you are a parent. Did your mum come over with cookies she baked for your kids? Have you lost track of time and it’s now 8 pm and you haven’t made dinner?
A better promise: I will teach my kids about the importance of nutrition and try to cook healthy recipes most of the time.
I will never let my kids have an iPad.
We get it… the rapid evolution of technology and decline of outdoor play can be concerning, but iPads, iPhones, and TV don’t have to be an enemy. If you have chores to do or just need to catch your breath, sometimes sitting your kids down to watch a show or play a game is just what works best – plus there’s also educational games and show options!
A better promise: I will encourage play before screen time but if screen time wins that day, I’ll keep it as educational as possible.
I will never let my house go.
Parents are constantly judged for this one by guests who don’t have kids. Once you’re a parent, you’ll find that there may be a million other things going on that are more important than doing the dishes that night or vacuuming.
A better promise: I will make an effort to keep the house tidy but accept that it won’t always be spotless.
I will never give my baby a dummy.
After hours of endless crying and trying other soothing techniques for your newborn, a dummy may simply become your best friend. If the pros of using a dummy start to outweigh the cons for your family, then use the dummy shamelessly.
A better promise: I will try to not use a dummy, but if I end up needing it, I will brush up on the best tips and tricks to using one.
I will never let my baby sleep in my bed.
Co-sleeping – possibly one of the most controversial parenting decisions. If you have found that sleeping in separate rooms is causing too much stress for you, your partner, and your baby, it’s okay to start thinking about some alternative methods.
A better promise: I will do my own research about co-sleeping and then tackle sleep the best way for both me and my baby.
While the list of parenting rules you made when you were younger may have sounded like it was in stone, when you’re a parent, things change. Just learn to let go of your expectations, make adjustments to your rules when needed, and focus on being the best parent you can be – even if it’s a completely different parenting style to what you imagined before having kids.