Parenting is hard.
Setting boundaries is hard.
Upholding boundaries and expectations can be hard.
It may be hard but it is so worth it! What are the benefits to creating boundaries for your children at any age? There are 5 listed here below.
Creates security. The security of boundaries and expectations reduces anxiety in children and teens. If you have a kid who struggles with anxiety, creating clear boundaries can be very helpful in alleviating the anxiety of the unknown. Kids learn that the parents take care of things and it is not up to them. It can really take the pressure off.
Provides capacity for success. We are more successful when we know what is to be expected. How many times have you had a dream where you had to take a test but did not know what to study? It seems unfair to be given a test and not be told what is on it. I bet we would be on the phone in seconds if our child’s teacher did this. It is simply not fair. Setting clear expectations and boundaries makes the content of the test of life clear and known. This makes success possible.
Fights entitlement. Kids need to practice self soothing when things do not go their way and they do not get what they want. When our kids are babies we are told to let them cry a little so they learn to self sooth. The same goes when they get older. Learning how to deal with disappointment and know it is not the end of the world, is a strength in adulthood. However it does not magically appear. It takes experience and practice.
Teaches resilience. Our children need to know things will be okay. It is difficult, but true that we learn in struggle. “Grow through what you go through”, “What doesn't kill you makes you stronger”....the quotes are many. Getting back up every time we fall is a skill that needs to be learned and practiced. Perseverance is the key to much of life's great accomplishments!
Teaches them to set and hold boundaries. Setting clear boundaries is good modeling for kids. They will need to be able to do so in their future. It can help them hold up against toxic people and relationships. No one wants their kids to grow up in toxic relationships. No one wants their kids to become doormats who allow others to walk all over them or abuse them. Show them how to uphold fair boundaries. Show them how to be assertive and an advocate for themselves.
The fact is, brains are not fully developed until mid twenties or so. It unfair to expect kids to know what is expected, take care of everything, make all the right choices, do all of their homework, complete all chores, maintain a household, always be appropriate let alone know what is appropriate, and make all final decisions. It is simple science. That is why they are under the care of a guardian until adulthood. It is our job as parents to be responsible for all of this until they can do it on their own.
Two HUGE reminders as you set and maintain boundaries.
First, remember that your child’s behavior is not a reflection of your parenting. Your parenting is a reflection of your parenting.
Secondly, set your boundaries with caution! They must be upheld. It is counter productive to set boundaries and not uphold them. Rebuilding after you have given up becomes that much harder.
I can help you if you are interested in rethinking your go-to parenting strategies with support. If you are interested in allowing me to work with you, feel free to email me at fountain.coach@gmail .com or book a FREE 30 minute Consultation Session at www.fountainofyoucoaching.com under the Book Now tab!