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Parenting Wisdom: The Most Important Thing I’ve Taught My Child

Parenting Wisdom: The Most Important Thing I’ve Taught My Child

What is the most important thing you’ve taught your child?

It’s certainly a tough question, but an important one to ask yourself over time. Are you instilling important life skills, lessons and values? Are you teaching them about things that have true meaning for you and your family? Our Family Room blog team recently discussed this topic. Today they share some of the important things they feel that they’re teaching their own children.

The Most Important Lesson I’ve Taught My Child

Mother and daughter laughingKris-Ann: I’m not finished, but I think teaching them to be kind – to nature, to animals, to each other, to other people, etc. Kindness is really important to me and to our family.

Mary: Manners. My kids do have excellent manners. Both my husband and I are consistently encouraging “please” and “thank you’s”. It’s honestly a requirement of them to get us to do anything and while they sometimes have to be reminded at home, my kids are pretty consistent in using manners with other people. It’s music to my ears!

Media Mom: To love and respect each other. Nothing gives me more pride than seeing my kids getting along, turning to each other when they need help, and being thoughtful of one another.

Kate: At this point, I think the most important thing we’ve taught Liam is to be generous with his affection and to be considerate of other people’s feelings. He has always been a very affectionate little guy, but it melts my heart now when he spontaneously tells me he loves me, asks me how my day was or if something makes me happy or sad.

Amy: This one is tough to answer because I often feel that, as a parent, I’m teaching my children all kinds of important things. Yet, it’s often not until years later that you end up seeing the output of all those important lessons. A couple of years ago I realized I maybe wasn’t doing such a  great job of helping my daughter (age 8) to be resilient. I often would swoop in and fix things for her and rarely ever let her fail. What I discovered was that she was really good at doing things but had very poor self-confidence or would melt-down at any new challenging task. Since then, I’ve been working on this especially in the area of homework and school work. Instead of giving her the answers anytime she struggles (and throws a fit), I try to guide her to “own” her homework and just try her best. At our recent parent-teacher conference, her teacher praised her as one of the few kids that could persevere through tough math problems. We’re getting there. With my son (age 3), I’m much more patient to let him figure things out on his own and, yes…fail.

Lisa: Self-love. We work a lot on self-affirmation and learning to love yourself for who you are. Kindness to others is important too, but you can only give to others what you are willing to give to yourself, so we’ve worked hard to make sure our daughter has a strong sense of self.

Jessie: I’m trying to teach Zoe to be resilient and to be able to bounce back from things. If she falls, I do not rush over to her or make a big deal. I want her to be able to get back up and keep going.

Heather: Compassion and empathy. Having a daughter to cares for others and acts with compassion is the greatest gift.  Don’t get me wrong, there are certainly days when we don’t do so well, but focusing on that as a common theme has helps our whole family to be better people.

Allison: To be compassionate and care about the feelings of others. My daughter doesn’t always do the right thing, but when she makes a mistake she genuinely feels bad and is able to communicate what had happened and work out a solution that makes everyone happy. I’m thankful she is so kind-hearted.

Valentine's Day card making at Pottery Barn Kids


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