The Biggest Parenting Mistakes That Destroy Kids’ Mental Health

The Biggest Parenting Mistakes That Destroy Kids' Mental Health

Parenting is one of the most physically and emotionally demanding jobs in the world because it involves more than providing a roof over a child’s head and food in their stomach. You are trying to develop a brave, independent, kind, hard-working, caring child, but while there are many things we do well in parenting, there are also things that can do more harm than good.

There’s a fine line between wanting the best for your child and unknowingly pushing them in the wrong direction. Often parents are unaware of the mental harm they are inflicting on their children and it is common for them to declare that “everything is fine” when in reality they are harming the minds of their children.

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr. Malini Saba, psychologist and president of the “Anannke Foundation”, described five ways you can contribute to your child’s poor mental health and how you can prevent it:

1. Making comparisons between your child and others – One of the most emotionally damaging misparenting acts is comparison with other children. It is the root cause of many mental disorders in children, including inferiority complexes, a strong awareness that they will never be good enough, low confidence, low self-esteem and a lack of motivation. self-love. Parents frequently compare career choices, marital status, demonstration of faith, test scores, and more. of their children. Parents need to recognize that every child’s mind and body are distinct and that comparing your child to others will only cause psychological and emotional turmoil.

2. Ignoring Your Child’s Emotional Needs – Ignoring your child’s emotional needs is a kind of abandonment in which a parent willfully creates a number of personality defects that later prove to be mentally and emotionally detrimental to their children. Abandonment and ignorance generally do not include physical absence; a child may also feel unwanted and neglected by minor gestures. When a child is hurt, even by a little something, it is essential that the parent console him, comfort him, hug him if he is not feeling well, celebrate his small victories, defend him and above all, be there for children when they need you. If you don’t meet your child’s emotional needs, he will eventually turn to other sources of support, which may or may not be better for him in the long run.

3. Using guilt to get his way – Parents may unwittingly send their children on a guilt trip to do something for them in an attempt to induce feelings of remorse or shame. They sometimes use emotional blackmail to make people feel guilty. For example, phrases such as “Go out and have fun, don’t worry about me”, accuse them of “not helping around the house”, “not considering what the parents might need” or “I don’t take care of my health because I’m too busy taking care of your needs”. At first glance, it may appear that they are considerate, but their actions are aimed at inducing guilt. When a parent blames a child, the effects can be devastating and long-lasting, including loss of self-confidence, difficulty believing they can do anything right, and the development of self-doubt and self-doubt. low self-esteem. A healthier way to handle this situation would be for the parent to have a healthy dialogue and explain their wants or expectations without condemning or blaming their child, which is a better way to deal with the situation.

4. Demand perfection – Kids should learn to shoot for the stars, but it should be an option, not a requirement. To become a perfectionist and excel in everything, a child constantly strives and works hard to accomplish more and more. This vicious circle never ends and the child ends up with a deep sense of dissatisfaction and failure. As a result, mental health issues such as sadness, stress, and anxiety develop. As a parent, you need to recognize that it’s okay if your child isn’t always perfect, getting top grades, winning awards, and thriving. in all his endeavors.

5. Overprotection – Keeping your child in a safe bubble eliminates a lot of anxiety, but protecting them from obstacles hinders their development. Think of yourself as a guide, not a guardian. Allow your children to experience life, even when letting go is scary. You will give them the opportunity to develop confidence in their ability to handle whatever life throws at them.

Bringing her expertise to the same, Dr. Malvika Samnani, expert in occupational therapy, sensory integration and speech clarity and founder of Feeding Clinic, discussed five parenting mistakes to avoid:

1. Assuming kids will always agree on everything – Some children are raised by parents who do not allow them to express differing thoughts or opinions and may accuse them of being stubborn, rebellious, ignorant or worse if they do. As a general rule, these parents will not tolerate any questioning from their children, because even a simple question would imply that the child does not believe what the parent thinks he “should” believe. Religiously toxic parents may label their children “possessed.” Other dysfunctional parents may continue to use equally hurtful labels such as “crazy.” It is bad parenting because it prevents the child from thinking independently. When children view themselves in an unfavorable way, they are more likely to keep things bottled up and say nothing in the future, which makes their childhoods strained.

2. Comfort first – Similar to failure, children need to experience “uncomfortable” situations to develop their mental toughness. Trying new things will undoubtedly make children uncomfortable, but it’s the first step to learning that they can discover a new food they enjoy, make new friends, excel in a new sport, etc be there to support them.

3. Aspire to live your unrealized dreams – Your child may have more opportunities and better facilities than you, but that doesn’t mean you have to push them to do what you couldn’t do. Every child is unique and just like you, your child may have distinct preferences. Therefore, to train children to like what you like is to deny them the opportunity to pursue their own interests. This can have a significant impact on their mental health.

4. Not taking care of yourself – As a parent ages, it becomes easier to maintain good habits such as eating well, exercising regularly and making time to rest. Therefore, it is essential to demonstrate self-care practices to your children. In addition, it is essential to demonstrate positive coping techniques to your children. Consider telling your child, “I had a really stressful day at work and I’m going to relax with a cup of tea and a good book,” etc.

5. Force to conform to socially established rules and norms – Often children have their own way of expressing themselves and some are, according to society, ‘different’. Now, “different” does not mean “wrong”, but according to the rules and standards that society has established, they are not acceptable. For example, if a boy wants to learn to cook, which by social standards is a girl’s interest and hobby, he may be chosen for it, but this is not ideal. So, as parents, you should never force your child to limit his personality but rather help him to enhance it.

Most parents make the parenting mistakes mentioned above that are often mistakenly considered harmless. Parents and society may sometimes not know enough about children’s mental health to distinguish between bad and good parenting habits.