(from 1 Minute Parenting Insights published on Decoding Your Child Facebook Page on 1 Sep 2016)
In the early years, our babies do not have a concept for self. Their entire world is made up of their caregivers like ourselves. How they feel is dependent on how their caregivers react to them and their needs. That is when we respond lovingly to our babies ALL THE TIME, including bedtime and through the night because that forms the basis of how they see the world.
Later, our children start developing a sense of self. Then our role as caregivers change. We empower them, support them, guide and cheer them on. That is when we give them some level of independence, encourage them to explore, teach them right from wrong, and celebrate their successes so they grow up confident of themselves because we have shown them our confidence.
When they are grown up and have developed a sense of self, we become their cheerleaders. That is when we let go, respect their views and celebrate the person they have become.
Parenting is an ever-changing landscape where our roles are constantly changing. Let us all grow with our children.