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“Moooomm where’s my shoes?” “Moooommmm, I can’t do this homework. It is toooo hard. Help me.” “Daaadd, feeding the dog is too much work. I’m tired.” If you are like most parents, you hear this not just daily, but minute by minute. Why? Dr. Kevin Leman shares how we do too much for our kids and why is it bad for them.


We Do Too Much for Our Kids

The sun was shining beautifully on a July afternoon here in Oregon. Andrea looked forward to catching up with a friend, who was dropping by. Just as the conversation would get started between Andrea and her friend, a child would come over to get their shoe tied. As they resettled to visit, another child would  need a glass of water. Over and over a child needed something, until there was no time left to visit.

Why does this happen? Because we, parents, do and think too much for our kids.

It is time to push back and let them do it for themselves. I am always amazed what happens when I tell my kids, “Figure it out for yourself.” After the whining has stopped, they usually figure it out in seconds. Oh, to remember and let them figure it out.

Happiness doesn’t make good parenting

We, as parents, are trying to keep our kids happy. Happy. Happy. Happy. You can see it in the video games and TV watching we use to keep them entertained.

Yet, instead of keeping them entertained, we are making them self-centered. And self-centered kids are not a good thing.

Mom, Respect yourself

Moms need to respect themselves by training their children at a young age. When you correct them at a young age, you are teaching them to respect you.

Remember you represent all of womanhood and what women are to your daughters and son. How do you want them to treat their future wives or be treated by their future husbands?

Thinking equal Responsibility

You as a parent have a responsibility to let your kids do more thinking for themselves.

When they ask where their shoes are. Say nothing. Complete silence. Stop answering. Say, “I don’t know.”

Don’t solve all your kid’s problems. Let them struggle a bit and learn how to solve their own problems.

Say, “I see that’s a huge problem. What are you going to do about it?”

They say, “I don’t know what to do.”

You say, “I bet you can figure it out for yourself.”

How best to unwind your child’s expectation of you doing for them?

  • Actions, not words
  • Don’t get sucked into their trap
  • Keep the tennis ball on their side of the court

Action Steps

  • Apply Vitamin N liberally.
  • Say, “I bet you can figure this out.”
  • Don’t take over. Let it be your kids’ responsibility or problem.
  • Be silent. Don’t say anything.

Parenting Tip/ Pocket Answer

I bet you can figure it out.


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