Child. Centered. Parenting. We hear it all the time – “My child is my world.” It sounds cute and maybe even honorable. Who wouldn’t want to give up everything for their children, right? But what happens when we focus too much on our child’s wants, too much on pleasing our child, or too much on making sure our child is happy all of the time?
Child centered parenting is a common phenomenon in this day and age. It’s the parent who gives into a child’s tantrum, the parent who takes out a second mortgage to pay for their children’s sports activities, or the parent who will ignore all other relationships while their child is still living with them.
But one day, hopefully, your child will leave your house. And when they do, they will cease to be the center of your world. Yes, we still love them and care for them. But if we don’t show teach them that the world will never revolve around them, they will have a hard time getting along in society.
If a child doesn’t learn to handle disappointment, boredom, or face the fact that we have to do things we simply don’t want to do early on in life – then adulthood will be very disappointing.
What will happen if they don’t feel like going to work? Or paying the water bill? It’s okay for a child to see that you have a life outside of them. Yes, we want to meet all of their needs. But in order to avoid ‘child-centered parenting’ we want to set limits on their WANTS.
Teach your child the difference between their needs and their wants. Always meet their needs. Set limits on their wants. This way, when they are an adult, they will learn to be self disciplined. What happens when we, as adults, always give into our wants? It leads to addiction, obesity, or idolatry.
Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.James 1:14-15
Where sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.
Teach your kids the valuable life lessons of dealing with their disappointments, boredom, and discipline while they are still young. Then, you will have raised happy, healthy adults that are prepared for the real world!
Upcoming: Child Centered Parenting: A Biblical Example
Want to know how to tackle Child Centered Parenting or other common parental problems? Keep an eye out for my upcoming course Practically Imperfect Parenting! I’ve been teaching this course for a few years now and I’m about to make it public! Details coming soon!