How Parents Can Serve As A Role Model
Being a role model for someone else can seem like a daunting task initially. However, as a parent, children will almost always look to you for guidance (whether they admit it or not), and because of this, being the best role model you can be is essential in keeping the lines of communication open. As the main adult interaction children have for the first several years of their life, creating a positive image associated with authority can make all the difference in their later years and expressing their emotional needs.
The Meaning Of A Role Model
Why are role models important? Why are parents the best role models? You and your teenager may be questioning this at the same time, believe it or not! Though it may not seem like it through their growing pains in learning how to become an adult, your teenager still looks to you for a solidified example of how to build a comforting environment, what self care looks like, vital conflict resolution skills, and more. The meaning of role models will vary from person to person, although, in a teenager-parent relationship, it sets them up for success when they venture into the world on their own.
How Are Parents Role Models
Parents are the first role model that children encounter. Typically, this means that they’ll follow the example set out by parents on handling relationships, learning how to communicate, and overall how to express themselves in a healthy manner. Due to this, you essentially automatically become a role model once you become a parent, congrats! This part in parenting may cause stress and pressure on parents to be the “best they can be” or “perfect,” but you can rest easy knowing that no one is perfect and it may actually help your child’s development to watch you make mistakes.
When children are young, they can be compared to sponges. Absorbing all the information about the world and the people around them that they can. So, fear not, even if you make a mistake they’ll likely be observing you to see how you handle conflict. This, in turn, can provide a great healthy example to your children on how to handle tough situations in their own lives and develop important problem solving skills. Although, as they grow into teeangers, outside influences may start to become increasingly more noticeable, for better or for worse.
As a parent, when your child starts to become a young adult you may find it more and more challenging to “get through” to them or overall feel connected to your child. They may want to spend more time with their friends or outside of the home, rest assured this is all perfectly normal. Teenagers want to express their individuality and explore independence, and as their parent it’s up to you to gently guide them in this endeavor. The fundamental blocks you set up when they are young children will come in handy during this time and communicating to your teenager that you are a safe space can make all the difference.
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