Conscious parenting isn’t about having all the answers. In fact, it’s often about not having any answers at all! Conscious parenting is simply being awake to ask the questions – is it important to teach my children manners or is it just conformist? Do I want my child to call adults by their first names or use last names? What do I think of the influence of preschool idols, like Disney Princesses on my daughter? How can I teach my children to have independent minds? How can I help my children have a healthy relationship with food, money, media?
The idea behind conscious parenting is to think about the end-product of child-rearing. I’ve often been called out for “thinking too much,” being an “over-thinker” and “worrying too much.” All that may be true, and maybe this is a result of having read too many of those “Choose Your Own Adventure” books when I was a child, but I find it hard to look at my darling little children without thinking about the possible long term effects of my parenting. I find myself frequently tossed into turmoil when standing at a new crossroads of child development because, though there’s often a short-term solution, I find myself questioning the long-term results. An example of this would be kids going bonkers before dinner. My mom calls this the “arsenic hour.” I think it’s also known as the “witching hour.” For whatever reason children are just full of beans, and often crankiness, just when it’s time to pull together dinner. The short-term easy solution to this fussiness would be to pop on the tv (and believe me, some days I do this). However, I question the long-term benefit or outcome of this method. Clearly, the old “tv or not tv” debate is an obvious conundrum of parenting, but it serves as an example. Other areas that vex me are best methods of discipline and exposure to overly branded and marketed toys.
Here are some resources I’ve pulled together that relate to some of the bigger themes in this blog. I always appreciate feedback and thoughts about anything I’ve mentioned here. If you agree with me, great! If you disagree – that’s wonderful! I’d really like to know why!