I learned very early on that I don’t at all believe in a one size fits all mentality for parenting.
Most people recognize that they must do what works for their individual family, or that they react in certain ways based on their past experiences, thoughts, feelings, etc. Yet many people don’t apply this mentality to their children and I don’t exactly understand why not. It’s not like children take years before exhibiting the people they are. Sure, people are constantly evolving, but I think that our children communicate pretty well early on, the personalities they have.
Some people may believe that it is more difficult to parent your children in ways that are different. Or maybe that it is unfair or will be viewed as unfair. But I almost think it’s unfair not to parent my children as individuals if I can. I don’t expect that by parenting my children the same way, it will automatically yield the same results… Not that I want clones of each other anyway. Doing what is best for each child within the family unit as a whole is the way we try to do things around here.
Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.
Home schooling is by far the best thing for my youngest daughter, but when Sean and I were split up, it was pretty much impossible. We worked around having to send her to school as best we could, but when we were in a position to once again do better for her specifically, we absolutely did. She happily home schools again and our K-Girl happily goes to school in the city… Trust me, having to drive her for 8:20 am every morning isn’t the most ideal for ME, but it is what works for her, so on the whole it is what is best for our family.
K is more social, so I have to make more effort at conversation with her, whereas with R (who is an introvert like me) we can just sit in the same room together doing our own things without talking for hours, but feel very much like we spent a lovely time together. They have different needs, as do I, as does Sean, and learning those needs of each other, balancing and respecting them is a primary focus for us so that we have a happy little family unit.
I’ve been blessed with these two kids of mine and I always want them to know that I absolutely respect them as the individuals they are. I never want them to fit into a one size fits all mould.