Fr. Jerry Orbos, SVD shares this story: "In my radio program, “Hello Father,” at Radio Veritas, I get lots of calls from children. How touching to hear these little angels who are so innocent and honest.
"Once, a 6-year old boy asked on air, for prayers for his father to come back to their family so that his mother would stop crying. Another time, a little girl asked for prayers for her father to stop beating up her mother. These and many heartbreaking stories should remind us adults how much we can affect the little ones. Big people have responsibilities. To whom much is given, much is also required. What sort of examples are we giving and what values are we leaving unto the little ones?"
I strongly believe that the behavior of the parents are the mirror of values that children may follow. “Children do not follow what they hear, but they follow what they see,” an old adage reminds.
Parenting may not be easy, but there are some behavior of parents that may have “cross the line" which may irritates the children and may imprint some kind of thought in their minds. Here are some as pointed out by The Huffington Post.
Be perfect in school. It’s natural to want your children to study hard and breeze through school, but you have to remember that children learn differently. It’s our job to guide them, not punish them because they may have a harder time learning.
Never mess up. It’s frustrating when our children mess up. It could be a dish dropped, door slammed or something bigger, like a car accident. We mess up too. Mistakes happen. We all mess up. Don’t hold being human against your children.
Ignore how we treat each other. Our children see and pick up more than we think. When we have those “heated” discussions in what we think is private, chances are they know what’s going on. How you treat each other will affect what kind of people they grow up to be. If you talk down to each other in front of them, if you criticize or belittle each other, you better believe they will too one day.
Always forgive. There are some rough situations. Parents split up, maybe even divorce, there are money issues, stresses of everyday life, and lots of things that are out of your control. But you have to make the best out of every bad situation and not take it out on your children. In those situations, you have to do as much as you can to give them some sense of normalcy.
Do what I say, not what I do. At the end of the day, our children learn more by what we do, not what we say. Actions do speak louder than words in parenting, and you have to lead by example.
As a reminder author Robert Fulgham has this to say, “Don’t worry that children never listen to you, worry that they are always watching you.”