Growing up today is much more complicated than when I was a kid. Everyday our children are bombarded with so many cultural, media and social influences that it’s no surprise that they get confused about who they are and how they should act. We’re living in an age of overindulgence and under-parenting. It is up to us as parents need to be role models for our children, to teach them respect and value not only themselves, but others. That is message I got from reading author, speaker and parenting expert Jill Rigby’s book “Raising Respectful Children In a Disrespectful World” which comes out in paperback from Howard Books, a division of Simon & Shuster, next week.
“Raising Respectful Children In a Disrespectful World” takes an honest and critical look at parenting today. No parent intentionally sets out to raise an “aristobrat,” a child treated like royalty, like little Kings and Queens of the house. However, in our efforts to raise children with a healthy view of themselves, we often focus more on building their self-esteem and not self-respect.
Rigby describes three distinct styles of parenting – parent-centered, child-centered and character-centered. Parent-centered parents are more concerned with their own agenda than their child’s best interest. Child-centered parents are more concerned with their child’s approval than their child’s well-being. Character-centered parents are more concerned with their child’s character and comfort.
She draws a distinction between performance and purpose and believes that we should all be character-centered parents, focusing on the kind of person we want our children to become. This is achieved by parents being their children’s life coaches, not just their cheerleaders. Rigby also advocates discipline and teaching children rather using punishment. The book illustrates all of this thru use of real-life scenarios and offers practical and age appropriate parenting techniques as well as suggestions on how to set boundaries for children without building walls of resentment.
Reading “Raising Respectful Children In a Disrespectful World” really made me think about who I am as a parent and I could relate to most of what Rigby was saying. However, I wasn’t a fan of the heavy Christian overtones throughout the book, which served – to me – as a distraction from the important message and advice this book provides – whether you are a parent of tots, tweens or teens – about cultivating a home of respect.
For Full Disclosure – I was not compensated for this post. I did receive a free paperback copy of “Raising Respectful Children In a Disrespectful World” from Howard Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, to read and review. As always, the opinions expressed in this post and on The Harried Mom blog are all my very own. Please do your own research before purchasing any products as your opinion may differ.
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