How To Be A Positive Parent

I doubt that my family would even debate it if I said that positive parents didn’t raise us.  Can we be positive parents with our kids, even if raised differently?  I say a positive Yes!  You can be a positive parent, so let’s look at a few ways to help you on your way.

Take a moment and list the various topics and situations that caused the problems in your home when you were growing up.  You might have things like a lack of agreement on discipline between your parents, getting kids to be accountable in school, dating rules, or using the family car.  Once you have your list, think about the age grouping for your child:  Prenatal, Baby: 0-12 months, Toddler: 1-3 years, Preschool: 3-5 years, Grade school: 5-12 years, Teen: 12-18, Young Adult: 18-21.

Next, take a moment to reflect on some of the challenges that came up during some of these years.  You may not be able to think of them all, but what were the issues in general?

Once you have your list of upcoming challenges, take a look at your child’s age group.  How close are they to moving to the next group?  How mature are they for their age?   Please make a list of challenges they will likely face for their age group.  Sit down with your spouse or significant other discuss some key issues.  Agree in advance as to how to handle them.  For example, driving is a big decision.

Many parents have various thoughts on when, how to pay for insurance if they should have their car or use the family car; what are the rules?  What are the consequences?  The idea here is to anticipate some of the problems before they happen and be on the same page.

With my parents, sometimes it would look like a ping-pong match.  Can I use the car, “Like your mother?”  “Mom,” I would ask, “Can I use the car.”  “You have to get your dad to clear that.”  Hmm, that is confusing to a child and can create unnecessary tension for the kids and between parents.  We will discuss other positive parenting, but in this short writing, I would like to encourage you as a parent to anticipate the issues and discuss them with your spouse and significant other, as well as your child.

Ask questions like, How will handle this?  Get the child’s input, and then look for alignment between what you believe as parents.

Parenting with an awareness of child developmental levels makes a huge difference.  Here is a link that will help, Parenting & Child Development – Dr. Rich Patterson (

Here are some positive parenting tips from the CDC, Positive Parenting Tips | CDC

Anticipating issues makes parenting more fun and enjoyable.  When something comes up, in many cases, you have already worked out the details in advance, and everyone knows the expectations and processes expected.

Yours for Better Parenting,