Family Doctor to Parents: Your Parenting Is Hurting Your Kids

4. Be the boss. You tell your kids what they CAN and CAN’T do

Your kids’ friends parents may be WAY more permissive than you are. TOUGH. Your kids’ BFF is fourteen and attending a high school party? Too bad. Your kid still can’t go. Your child’s brain is not fully formed enough to make smart decisions because it doesn’t fully understand the possible negative outcomes. He or she is DEPENDING on you to keep them safe, whether they know it or not. Don’t let others’ parenting decisions sway you. “Other parents don’t have a clue at what they are doing,” Sax said. “That’s why what they are doing doesn’t have good outcomes.”

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5. Teach your kids that they are not the most important thing in the world

Christian parents are commanded to do this by the Bible, to love others MORE than ourselves, but this is healthy and right for ALL kids to learn, no matter their family’s faith. Sax says kids need to be able to learn to see the world through someone else’s eyes and to be humble and empathetic, and I wholeheartedly agree.

I don’t know about you, but I find this family doctor’s parenting advice to be a much-needed breath of fresh air. YES, parenting is HARD, but we make it way harder on ourselves than it needs to be when we let our kids take the driver’s seat before they are old enough. As unfashionable as it sounds, kids thrive WITHIN boundaries, not by living outside the lines. If you’re a fan of what Dr. Sax has to say, I hope you will share this article and spread the word to other parents.

Read this next: A Pediatrician’s Guide to Preventing Child Sex Abuse


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Jenny Rapson
Jenny Rapson is a follower of Christ, a wife and mom of three from Ohio and a freelance writer and editor. You can find her at her blog, Mommin' It Up, or follow her on Twitter.