Let me just start this off by saying that I am not a parent. I also know that without being a parent, it is really hard to say that "I vow to never _____" anything about when I become a parent.
However, that being said, I do vow this one thing:
I vow to never deliberately badmouth my children's father or manipulate them to choose sides in a fight. Problems between parents, no matter how much they involve the parenting of the child, are NOT to be discussed around or with the child.
I understand that there will be times that you need to discuss with the child about the fight, as in to sooth them, but I just can't stand when one or both parents use their children as collateral to get what they want. It makes me sick.
As a child who has been in the middle, I know how confusing and hurtful this can be, and I vow to never (If I can absolutely help it) put my children in this position, no matter if their father and I suffer the bitterest of splits.
I'm so sad right now. :(
@MargaritaVille: I completely agree! I can't even come up with anything better!
Oh i get this. My FI has two children 11 and 9 from previous marriage and his ex always bad mouths the father to the children, fabricates stories and lives in her own reality which is based on lies. The kids get as much positive reinforcement but every week they come to us the father has to defend himself because mommy said this or that. The both are starting to see the true colours however the mother plays a victim in everything and every week seams to be the same thing.
i agree, wholeheartedly. i have friends who grew up in situations like that, and i see many of them having the same issue with their own kids. it just makes me sad.
one i want to add: "i vow to never force my child to clean their plate at dinner". some of my neighbors growing up had the "you have to eat every single thing on your plate before you can get up". and they gave their kids MASSIVE portions. i remember a few times when their youngest would have to stay at the table for hours. other neighbors had a better rule: "you have to try at least one bite of everything on your plate, even if you don't think you like it". their kids weren't picky eaters at all, and they didn't force them to finish everything on their plates, they just ate until they were full.
I vow to never lie to my daughter. And since I have a 15 year old I can say I haven't. We have the most amazing relationship with open honest communication between the both of us. She knows I would never lie to her too. When she asks about a sensitive subject we sit and have a discussion about it and neither of us get up feeling ashamed or embarrassed. I never had this growing up so it was VERY important for me to have this with my daughter.
@Lulume: Exactly. Unfortunately this is the case with my half brother and his father. His father continues to emotional abuse my mother through their son even after both have remarried. My poor little guy comes home in such a mess and has tantrums and can't sleep because he's so angry. Oh yea? He's 5 1/2. :(
@colorofmyheart: Good one! I myself hardly ever finish a meal if we're out because of portions and without being able to control whats put on your plate, or being old enough to understand what you can eat before you're full, I would NOT be able to handle it. When I'm done eating, I'm done. And it makes me physically ill to even think about putting food in my mouth once I'm done.
@notevenclose: I love this. My mother did the same with me and I really appreciate it. It helped prepare me for the real world as an adult.
@MargaritaVille: I second yours.
@colorofmyheart: +1 to the clean plate club! First, I think it contributes to overeating by not allowing people to learn to listen to their body to tell them when they are hungry/full. Second, my earliest ED habits formed out of being forced to eat most/all of what I was served. I used food as a tool to rebel and exert control. Not good!!
My other big one right now (since I'm in the midst of wedding planning) is I vow to NEVER call my future son/daughter's wedding "my wedding".
Oh, I love these.
+1 to the not badmouthing thing. FI and I were talking about something the other day and he said, "If, god forbid, we divorce, we need to promise that we will NEVER put our kids in the middle." I wholeheartedly agreed. Though I find it very weird (mostly because they've joked about wife swapping), his cousins' divorced parents are good friends. They all hang out (the parents and their new spouses), have dinner, joke around.
+1 to the clean plate thing. That's a cruel thing to do to a kid and leads to, like @MrsWBS said, overeating and bad food habits/not knowing how to listen to your body.
I vow to never get angry at my kid for being honest/coming clean about something.
Let me clarify that angry and disapointed are two different things. For example, if my teen decides to be honest with me about drinking at a party, I will not get angry, I will listen and offer advice. How can I expect my kids to tell me anything if I get angry with them for doing so?
I agree with all of these!
And, I vow to never spoil my children or smack my children. I'm not anti smacking, I was smacked, and it worked, but I would rather talk to them or use other techniques such as time out or removal of priveledges. I also vow to never say "Because I said so" and will give them a reason for everything. I also vow to never compare my child to myself or their siblings. I see so many parents say "Your sister is doing really well at school, why aren't you?" or similar things, and I find it really sad, and I think that is one of the worst things you can say to a child. I also vow to never give them lollies as rewards, which can also lead to eating problems later in life. I also vow to never force my child to do something because I want them to do it, such as play a certain sport or follow a certain path of studies. I don't believe in pushing something onto a child because it is ideal.
O.My.Heart i totally agree!!!
My LO is 18months and i never ever want to put her in a positoin where she cant trust me or tell me what shes been up to. i was raised very strictly and controlled and it was hell!
i never want to put her through any of that
i will never say, "i'm going to tell your dad...." or "wait until your dad comes home...."
i hate it when i hear mom's saying this to their kids. my mom never said that to us because 1.) my dad was always working, so if it was up to him, i'd still be waiting for a punishment, haha and 2.) dad wasn't the only one who could tell us what to do. we had to listen to both mom AND dad.
i also want to make sure to enforce rules/discipline fairly. my mom had a tendency to let my younger brother get away with things my older brother and i never would have been able to get away with. like, she just "forgot" that she grounded him and he'd get to go out with his friends.
Badmouth anyone (including dad) in front of her. It is an ugly habit.
I would never allow my kid to be mercilessly teased or bullied in school
Never let any mental or health issues go untreated
@lilchicana: +1111111111111!!!!!!!!!!! I grew up in a household where neither parent would ever say something that gross! My mom was a strong (like, army strong. Like, did push ups with all of her kids on her back, strong) independent young mother, and she would never defer to my dad for dicipline. That's for chumps.
I vow to never ignore my children while they run around bothering people in a public space because I am too lazy or tired to do something about it.
I'm looking at you, selfish parents....
I vow never to blame my child.
I don't mean that I will not enforce consequences. My mother still blames me for things my father said/did and goes so far as to say the stress I cause her gives her cancer. Making your child feel guilt for things beyond their control is immature and cruel.
(to make this positive) I vow to be consistent, stable and let my child know they are loved.
I have never felt my mother's love for me is unconditional. I don't trust her.
To the people that say they will not put their child in the middle - I wholeheartedly agree - a child is made up equally of both their parents. This is so important.
I think consistency between parents is so important as well. My favourite thing I've seen is when a kid asks one parent for something, they say no, so they ask the other and they get the response "mommy and daddy are a team."
I vow to never respond to my child with sarcasm.
I vow to never put my spouse/their father down in front of them.
I vow to not put reflections of myself or my life onto them. They are their own people!
I am a parent at these are important parenting vowa that I have made, and thankfully I have kept.
1. I will not put momentary compliance ahead of maintaining the closeness in our relationship.
2. I will not yell.
3. I will not regret not being there. I will show up in their lives for the stuff that matters and the things that don't.
4. I will make myself available to talk to them about anything, whenever they feel the need.
5. I will give them a beautiful childhood full of great memories.
@notevenclose: my mom and I have this relationship and I LOVE it! I will be doing the same with my kids!
i vow to never put my human children, fur babies not included, on a leash. I HATE seeing a parents do this, don't mean to offend anyone, but they are not dogs and shouldn't be treated as such.
@PrettyinPink45: my parents put me on a leash and I don't have any problems with it at all. I think it gives the kid some room to explore without escaping or in some cases bugging the shit out of other people/strangers when your toddler thinks it's a fun game to run from mommy and daddy in public areas. I also don't have anything against great parents who are able to keep their little ones within arms reach without leashes.
I vow to not let my kids eat chicken nuggets and fries more than once a week. And also to use proper child safety restraints in the car, it kills me to see little ones not buckled right for their age or weight in their carseats.
"I vow to never let the television babysit my child." I always hope that I do a good job of spending quality time with my children whenever I possibly can, and DH and I have already agreed that TV/electronics time should be pretty limited for most of our kid's lives. We will spend money on buying them swing sets, a basketball hoop, etc. rather than a video game system and tons of games.
@PrettyinPink45: I was also a "leashed" child. When I asked my mom why, she said when you take 4 kids to a busy place, it is way less embarrassing to make sure you knew where all 4 are at all times than to lose one, have one get swiped by a stranger, etc. But everyone's different :) I think it looks silly, but practicality wins in my mind.
I vow to never make my child feel unloved or unwanted. My mom has made comments such as "I wish ____ was my daughter instead of you," "If your father and I divorce, I want nothing to do with you," "You're a horrible daughter," etc. I get that things get said in anger, but even saying something like this just ONCE can make your child feel unloved for the rest of their life. But my mom would say these things fairly regularly and they are part of the reason I don't want a relationship with her.
I also vow to never let anyone live with my family without discussing it with EVERYONE, including the children, first. I vow to always take my child's thoughts and opinions into consideration and to never dismiss them; this also extents to never making comments such as "I'm older/your parent/the mama so I know better/am smarter/etc."
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