Gauging Your Parenting Skills

b0131c2dcaa84acda1250b08c9ee13dfWhile I was talking to a group of parents one day, the subject of gauging parenting skills came up.

One parent mentioned that she knew a woman who was an excellent parent because her children were very well-behaved.

Is cooperative behavior from your child the only gauge that reflects how well you parent?

My answer would be absolutely not!

Children’s behavior comes from a variety of sources, some of it is developmental in nature and some of it is based on innate temperament.
There is of course gender, birth order and a myriad of other factors as well.

Some parents really do have children who cooperate more. Sometimes I hear parents refer to these children as “good”.
Their behavior might be good, but it doesn’t make a child without that behavior not good.

I have also heard parents of newborns talking amongst themselves and gauging their skills as a parent on if they are breastfeeding and how long they are going to do it. Believe me, I breastfed my kids and loved it but we feed our children love. Excellent parenting of a newborn is not based on whether the parent is breast or bottle feeding. It is amazing how many parents feel that way though. I have held the hand of many a woman who felt like they failed because they could not or would not breastfeed.

Parenting is so big, so intense and so multilayered there is not one thing that defines a good parent.

The best gauge to measure your parenting skills is the unconditional love that you offer your child, your consistency, your ability to set effective limits that teach and guide, your ability to communicate effectively and the ability to connect with your child on an individual basis and honor who they truly are.

These are the characteristics of excellent parenting.

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