The answer to this question seems so obvious, but there are an awful lot of kids today who seem to think they can and should solve all their problems by themselves. If they need help they prefer the advice of their friends to their parents. Kids who steer clear of parents’ help, don’t end up with the best outcomes, making poor choices and not learning from situations. For this reason I think it’s helpful to have the following conversation with your kid(s). It might go something like this:
Ask your child– Why do you think kids have parents? Why don’t we just give you a credit card, send you out into the world as soon as you can walk and talk and say ‘Good Luck!” (Listen carefully to their answer. It might give you some insight into your child’s thinking.)
How long do children generally stay with their parents before they venture out on their own? Most kids know the answer to this. It’s when you’re about 18 to 20, or so. but, if you were a dog or a cat, how long would you stay with your Mom? A few weeks to a few months, depending on the species. And that’s because there’s not that much to learn about being a dog or cat. But being a human being is very complicated and it takes a long time to learn all that one needs to know.
Then you might point out, with a visual graph that makes the words have more impact, that you are, let’s say 40 years old and, let’s say, Dad is the same. Together you and Dad have 80 years of knowledge and wisdom, that it’s taken you 40 years to accumulate. Your child, on the other hand, is 6, or 8. Now, you and Dad want to donate all your knowledge to your child. You want to give it away, free of charge. You really do want him to be smarter than you. But in order for him/her to get there, your child needs to use you. That’s what parents are for! If your child chooses not to use you in that way, to do it on their own, then it will take him/her 86 years to get to that level of knowing. Or he/she can do it the better way. It’s their choice!