The desire to make children happy
Recently, my friend was courting a garden near his house. His wife noticed that there were too many stones in the soil, and suggested: “Let’s remove the stones from the soil before we plant new trees.” My friend replied: “No, the trees should grow on the same rocky soil on which the rest of the trees in the garden grow. In greenhouse conditions they will not survive. ” He thought for a second and added: “Just like our children.”
This approach is not common among parents, especially in families who live in large cities. Parents want their children to be happy. And this is a very noble desire, admirable, because parents do not set any expectations for the child, except that they realize their potential.
Did the parents who lived in the Middle Ages thought about the happiness of their children? Unlikely. They were more concerned about the issue of survival in conditions of hunger, epidemics and wildlife. Questions of happiness worried mankind only in relatively peaceful and stable times. However, the pursuit of happiness can be a burden on parents who want their children to be happy.
Like plants in the garden, children need difficulties to prosper and develop. This means that sometimes children need to be allowed to make their own choices, make mistakes and gain their first victories. Over the past decades, the views of parents on raising children have changed dramatically from “children should not be seen and heard” to “what is the matter with the child? I have not heard him for five minutes. ” Modern parents are afraid to lose sight of their children; they cannot allow their children to fail or have complex feelings. Instead of preparing children for adulthood, parents out of fear try to completely control them.
We mistakenly think that by looking after children, educating them and passing them our knowledge, we can completely control the process of their development. But is it really so? Obsession with the future of our children can lead to opposite results.
Children often feel depressed when they realize that they cannot live up to their parents’ expectations. As one teenager once said: “If I am not doing something perfectly, I feel worthless. It would be better if they shouted at me than said they were disappointed with me. ” At the same time, few parents believe that he puts his child’s expectations too high. Parents say, “We are not like that.” But this desire of happiness for their children is the most unrealistic expectation.
Do not worry: happiness is not the pinnacle of human existence. Life is designed so that from time to time we encounter difficulties. At the same time, we can achieve the happiness we are striving for. We must take care not only of our children, but also of ourselves. We strive for happiness that we have not achieved, despite all efforts, we want our children to achieve it. We invest all our resources in children, and then we demand a return on investment in the form of good grades at school, achievements, admission to prestigious universities, etc.
The pursuit of happiness becomes a burden for our children. To avoid this, follow these recommendations.
1. When someone asks you about your affairs, resist the temptation to talk about the achievements of your children. Tell about your affairs. If it suddenly turns out that you have absolutely nothing to tell about yourself, it may be time to devote more time to yourself: go somewhere with your spouse, find a hobby, etc.
2. Treat your problems separately from the problems of the child. Thoughts like “I wasn’t particularly popular at school” or “He has the same problems now that my brother-alcoholic had at that age” are dangerous because you stop seeing your child as he really is or can become.
3. What do you regret about what happened in your childhood? What mistakes would you not want your children to repeat? Remember the lessons you learned from your own life and let the children learn from their own mistakes.
4. Try to change your own weaknesses, not the weaknesses of your children.
5. Go to church or just look at the starry sky to realize how big the Universe is, and you are just a grain of sand in it. Deal with it.
6. In the modern sense, happiness comes down to the presence of food, shelter and health. However, as numerous studies confirm, happiness does not lie in money or social status, but in altruism and communication with other people. Therefore, to become happier, help people – not only with money, but also with their own hands. Teach your children to this.