Loving Children Unconditionally

Do parents love their children?  Of course they do.  The important question for all parents to consider is not if they love their children but how.

Most every parent I have worked with over the years has told me that their parenting choices are the result of their deep love for their child.  However, some of those loving choices can have adverse effects later in life:

  • Parents who buy every toy that their child asks for may create materialistic adults who expect everything of the world and have little sense of value
  • Parents who push their children to get the highest grades, be the prettiest or be the star athlete may create joyless adults or externally-focused overachievers
  • Parents who want to be “friends” with their child may create undisciplined adults who lack a sense of security
  • Parents who do everything for their child, never wanting their child to experience the pain of failure, may create adults who never take risks (or, come adolescence, are overly risky)
  • The parents who over discipline their child may create adults who are unable to problem-solve for themselves

In thinking about your loving parenting choices, please ask yourself: “Am I helping to create independent, fulfilled, joyous, imaginative, content human beings who are capable of giving and receiving love themselves?”

Here’s the answer, simply put: love your children unconditionally.  Make sure your children know that your love is not based on what they do or don’t do.  Love them because their very existence is a gift to you and to the world.

Respectfully,

Richard Cohen, M.A.

Vice President, Education