Recently, one of my kids was planning to meet with a friend and I realized that things are much different now then when I was growing up, in many ways of course. But what I’m referring to specifically relates to this recent situation. My husband said to me once ‘It didn’t matter where I went or what I did when I was a kid, the only thing that mattered is that I was home for meals and home for curfew’. I too remember walking anywhere and everywhere meeting up with friends, going to the park, downtown or the mall. And in later years, probably a party or two. Are we too protective? Do we do more than guide our children? Perhaps we don’t let them figure things for themselves enough as they move from toddler to teenager. In my kids’ defense, we are considered to live in the country so riding bikes along the highway really isn’t safe, but even if they live close by and can get there without real risk, we usually seem to be driving them there or back or both. As taken from a blog written by Emma Waverman, Today’s Parent, The “snowplow parent” is defined as a person who constantly forces obstacles out of their kids’ paths. They have their eye on the future success of their child, and anyone or anything that stands in their way has to be removed.
Is this me? Is this you? Maybe, maybe not. Either way, it is worth considering. It’s hard to criticize your children for not being responsible, showing initiative or being proactive if we have basically done all of that for them. Maybe it’s too much to expect a teenager to be a forward thinker when they know the ‘plow’ is right behind them…they are looking behind them instead. Mother’s Day is coming up (well for those of us in North America) and maybe it’s a good time to pause and reflect and read some more about different parenting techniques.