Next time you’re out at the bookstore, take a look at just how many books have been written on the subject of parenting. It seems there is an endless supply of advice on the best way to raise your kids. There are so many people in this field who are supposed experts. So how do you know who is actually right? How do you find out who has the best parenting advice for your child? It’s time to sift through all the expert advice and find what parenting style works for you.
Well, buck up little camper. It’s time to realize a real truth about you and your kids. First, you’re a parent and that means that you have a responsibility. Doesn’t matter whether you like being a parent. Doesn’t matter if your kids are good, or not so good. No matter what happens, you’re the parent of a child and that’s the end of it. You’re mission, whether you decide to accept it or not, is to raise your child to become a responsible student, friend, sibling, parent, citizen, and adult. It’s no easy job but there is a helpful model for successful parenting.
The RPM3 Parenting Method
First, this method is not a hard-and-fast rule book on how to raise kids. There is no such book. Your child is unique, and they are uniquely yours. There is only one way to raise your child, and that is your way. The RPM3 method is more a set of guidelines to assist you in what you already know o be right. It’s a way to help keep parents on track and moving toward the goal of raising good kids, and helping them to grow up to be good people. So, here are the five steps of the RPM3 parenting approach.
Responding to Your Child Appropriately
What do you do when your child acts up or makes a really serious mistake? Do you react to the situation with strong emotions, anger, and rage? Do you say the first thing that comes into your mind while you’re experiencing this anger? Well, that’s a normal, human response. It is also a poor response for a parent. Rather than reacting to your child’s behavior, take a moment to think about what is really going on. Take all the time you need whether it’s a few moments or even a few days. The key here is to see things as clearly as possible so that you can calmly and rationally respond to them.
Prevent Problems or Risky Behavior Before They Occur
This is just common sense. As a parent, you’re going to need to be actively involved in the life of your child. Set boundaries and enforce violations with real consequences. Real consequences occur every day in the real world. Best to get your kids used to that concept now.
Monitor Who and What is in Your Child’s World
Who are your kid’s best friends? FDO you know them, or their parents? Have you even met them? Where do they live? Do they have a gun in their house? These are all good questions and as a parent, you should know the answers. Keep the communication lines open with your child. Ask questions and listen to what they are saying.
Mentoring Through Good Times and Bad Times
Just like you, your kids re going to have good and bad times in their lives. As a parent you know that as your kids get older, they sometimes under-value your wisdom and advice. That’s normal. Sometimes kids need to look outside their relationship with you to find a mentor. Someone who is supportive, can give guidance and advice. If your child looks elsewhere for a mentor, make certain you maintain an open dialog with the child, mentor, and what is going on. You don’t have to know everything, but you must act responsibly as a parent.
Model a Consistent Example for Your Child
Role models are everywhere these days. If you don’t provide a consistent, positive example for your child, they might look elsewhere for that example. You are the parent and you have a duty to maintain that good and consistent example. There is no give in this situation, no choice. You must do whatever it takes to be a good example.
Remember that kids are watching, recording, evaluating everything you do. By your actions, you are actually training them to be just like you. Your kids will pick up all your habits, responses, mannerisms – both good and bad. And they will be just like you. Think of your child as a video camera filming you at your best, and your worst. Monitoring you 24/7, watching your every move. Yeah, parenting is a tough gig, but it is your tough gig and it’s time to start taking it seriously. Why is it important? Because you want the best for your kids, right? So give them the best example possible of what a good person, successful student, trustworthy friend, responsible co-worker, loyal spouse, or loving parent should be.
NICHD.NIH.com; “RPM3: How responding, preventing, monitoring, mentoring, and modeling can help you be a successful parent”
YourFreeParentingTips.com; “Separate Useful Parenting Advice from the Not-So-Useful”
MentalHelp.net; “Parenting Style and Its Correlates”