When the Kids Grow Up

Cathy Arnst

I recently came across some tips on parenting that contained a phrase that struck me as brilliant, and oft-forgotten: We are not raising children, we are raising future adults. If we could keep that thought front and center in our interactions with our children, I have a feeling many of us would change our approach. How many times have we heard other parents, or ourselves, excuse bad behavior by saying "it's just a phase" or "she's just a kid, kids act like that," and thus shrug off any attempts to exert parental authority. Then the next thing you know, they grow up to be the kinds of adults you can't stand because they are so self-centered, or unwilling to accept responsibility, or manipulative, or..well, the list could go on and on.

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