Do you let your kids fail? I don’t mean get Fs in school, I’m talking life experiences.
We have a story running in our Sept/Oct issue of HealthyLife magazine that’s about just that, and how many of us have not done right by our kids because we want to rush to their rescue every time they get in trouble or help them work their way out of every problem that arises.
Kids need to learn how to do these things on their own. And if they don’t learn with the smaller stuff when they’re little (how to make up with a friend they’ve had a disagreement with or how to handle a teacher who might not like them), how are they supposed to handle the bigger stuff as they grow into teens, young adults and then adults?
“Failure is probably the most important teacher in life,” expert and author Laura Gauld says in the story. Gauld is co-author of “The Biggest Job We’ll Ever Have” and head of the Hyde Boarding School in Woodstock, CT. When we take away the experience of failure and the ability to bounce back from it, we rob our kids of an opportunity for growth.
It’s hard not to be over-protective, but we really do need to step back and think carefully before we, as parents, intervene in a situation that we should let our kids handle on their own. So if you’re wondering why your teen or twenty-something may lack common sense or the ability to think through difficult situations, take a look at yourself — you may have enabled it!