In this fantastic NYT piece on raising successful children, Madeline Levine takes American parenting culture to task on some of our common ‘helpful’ behaviors. Her most prescient advice is that we first worry about ourselves.
At the end, she really brings it on home. The last line has become one of my favorite parenting mantras. Ever.
Parents also have to be clear about their own values. Children watch us closely. If you want your children to be able to stand up for their values, you have to do the same….Parents also have to make sure their own lives are fulfilling. There is no parent more vulnerable to the excesses of overparenting than an unhappy parent. One of the most important things we do for our children is to present them with a version of adult life that is appealing and worth striving for.