I know a lot of people have trouble deciding if it’s right to monitor things in their childrens’ lives. I’m here to tell you, since everything that child does you are responsible for, you should know everything your child does. I believe it is part of parenting to make your childs’ business your own.
That’s not to say you need to quiz your child every day about what they talked about and with whom, but you should know who they’re hanging out with, where they are, what they’re probably doing and they need to have the expectation that you’ll be spot checking. Is it right to search your kids room? Why shouldn’t it be, the room is in your house and in my opinion if I pay the bills over the dwelling, everything in it is my business because I’m responsible for it, good and bad.
I also think it’s perfectly fine to spot check the kids’ cell phone, it’s important to know what they’re talking about with their friends. Not to mention having strict rules about your teens texting and driving. I mean we know the attention span of these kids, it’s time that we hold ourselves accountable for enforcing our rules and making sure our kids are responsible. Or else:
It’s also important to explain to your kids that you are involved to that degree because you care about them, their well being and their emotional involvement with other people. Tell them that you want them to enjoy their childhood, move slowly, explain kissing when you think they’re ready and warn them to go no further. If you know your child, you’ll know when it’s time to explain more and provide the tools and knowledge to protect themselves, emotionally and otherwise.
You cannot be an effective parent if you don’t take the time to know your child. You have to be an observer as a parent, not absent and then over reactive when something bad happens. To be responsible is hard, it’s a constant learning experience, you know that. It’s important to temper your teaching with love, affection and praise. Additionally, if you do not expect great things, they will not know how to expect great things of themselves.
You must explain the importance of standards to your children, so that they understand why you work hard at what you do, to live by the standard that you have set for yourself. Where else will your children learn this? The bottom line is that you are responsible for turning out a productive, self sufficient adult and there is no one more capable to teach your kid how to do that than you, the one that’s supporting them.
Don’t leave anything to the imagination or to someone else to teach them if you expect them to understand your values and the standards you have set for them. They will learn what they want to know from someone, wouldn’t you prefer they get it from you?