New York City 034 300x225 POSITIVE PARENTING   I LOVE YOUFor all positive parents the most important item that they could have for their kids is their expression of love.   From the time when our kids are born we create an infinite amount of ways that we can show this expression. In the beginning we do all that we can do to make sure that they have every possible convenience. We fill their rooms with toys, mobiles, boxes of diapers, you name it.  If it’s a boy, we’ll go to the sporting goods store and buy that football or basketball or baseball bat. If it’s a girl we’ll fill her closets with all kinds of pretty dresses, ballerina shoes and fill her crib with the largest stuffed dolls we could find.

As these kids get older our love intensifies. When we introduce them to the world, we want to make sure that they have all the latest protection gizmos. All of us have bought that 6 million dollar car seat or that 20 million dollar stroller, complete with a DVD player and a self closing hood in the event of bad weather. Some of us and I won’t mention any names, have even bought those 10 way mirrors so we could drive and keep an eye on our kids, they can keep an eye on us , all while they are sitting the car, facing toward the back of the car playing with their fingers. By the way if anyone is interested, I have a slightly used set of mirrors that I’ll sell for…….never mind.

The most painful expression of love is when I have to deal with discipline. Performing discipline is love. It wasn’t until I became an adult when I was able to understand my mom when she said “This is going to hurt me more that it will hurt you.” I now understand that discipline is an important part of the love process. Every positive parent wants their child to be a useful and productive member of society. Using discipline properly will help our kids to reach this goal. Everyone should understand that discipline is not child abuse.

There are many ways that we show our love to our kids. I feel that the most effective way to demonstrate our love is by what we say.  We must make sure that we use positive language when we are with them. Word can either uplift or destroy. What I learned from my parents is that there has to be a balance with what I say. I cannot be an effective parent if I’m too condescending or if I’m too critical. Despite whatever is going on in my kids’ lives (both positive and negative), a hug and the words “I love you” can carry a lot of weight. Many years ago my mom started the habit of us saying these words to each other. No matter what differences we may have had, they all seem insignificant because we love each other.

Take this moment, right now, to tell your kids and everyone else in your family that you love them. In my case all those years of practicing this with my mom has left me a feeling of completeness because now she is in a nursing home and sometimes she’s not clear of who I am. I feel complete because when she was alert she understood clearly who loves her.

I LOVE BEING A DAD!!

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