- Letting your child sleep in the bed with you.
- Using "white noise" to help your child go to sleep.
- Using a baby wipes warmer.
- Allowing your child to carry around a special blanket or stuffed animal everywhere you go.
- Feeding your child off your plate.
- Never making your child drink plain water.
- Cutting the crust off bread; always peeling apples.
I consider myself a fairly conscientious and assertive parent. I think we all want to do best by our children, but lazy parenting is at the top of my list of pet-peeves. With that said, I'd like to add a couple more things to the list:
- Making your child clean his/her plate. The "Clean Plate Club" is a bad idea. Teach your child to listen to his/her stomach and stop eating when they're full. Don't set your child up to have issues with food/overeating later in life.
- Threatening something you won't follow through with. So many times I've heard parents threaten a child if the child doesn't change his/her behavior. For instance, "Johnny, we're going to pack up and leave the zoo if you don't start being nice to your sister!" That's all fine and nice if you're prepared to do just that if Johnny's behavior doesn't change, but when all your friends and their children are at the zoo with you and he KNOWS you have no intention of leaving, he's not going to believe you. Your credibility with your children diminishes drastically when you blow hot air and throw out empty threats.
- Not making an effort to stop unpleasant/unacceptable/age-UNappropriate behaviors. It's one thing if your infant is crying in the store because he/she is hungry. It's another if your preschooler is crying because he/she didn't get the sugar cereal they wanted. I tell my child to stop screaming. Yup, I sure do. And I make sure they stop. I'm not mean or hurtful or threatening. But I don't stand for it. I will (and have) left my grocery cart in the middle of the aisle and taken the child out to the car for a "time out" to calm down when the behavior warrants it. It is one of my biggest pet peeves to hear a child crying/screaming from one end of the grocery store to the other without the parent making an effort to stop the behavior. Teach your children to control their emotions and deal with disappointment in an appropriate way. And screaming/crying in the store for a half-hour is NOT appropriate at ANY age, in my book.
Do you have any other suggestions of mistakes parents make that create bad habits??