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While we might not realize it, we can’t shield our kids from everything, and we can’t make them strong by making them do everything on their own. We have to find balance when it comes to parenting, and that is not always as easy as it sounds.

There is no guidebook that tells all when it comes to parenting, and we all do things our own ways, but the things below can be very toxic if done for years on end. Make sure you’re caring for your kids properly. They are people too, and we need to remember that as we help them progress through life.

12 Toxic Things We Do As Parents That Hurts Our Children In The Long Run:

1. Doing everything for them.

While we might want to do things for our kids, we don’t need to do everything for them. They have to experience some things for themselves. Watch over them but allow them to try and see how they fair.

To foster independence, consider getting them a Kids’ Cooking Set. This allows them to start simple tasks in the kitchen, under your supervision, of course. Click here.

2. Asking them to do too much.

Your kids are not your slaves. They still need to be able to be kids. Let them have their fun sometimes, and give them breaks here and there.

A Children’s Activity Planner can help balance their tasks, ensuring they have ample free time – click here.

3. Allowing them to sit in front of a screen all day long.

Letting them spend all of their time online is not the best option. They need time away from the TV, the phone, and the computer. The more you connect them in other ways the better they’re going to feel overall. The internet is a cruel place and while they should be allowed to spend time with technology, they don’t need to be doing-so 24/7.

Encourage outdoor play with a Fun Outdoor Activity Kit – great for sparking creativity away from screens – click here.

4. Making big deals over small things.

Sure, you might be frustrated sometimes but don’t take that out on your kids. Small things will not matter later and you know it. Make sure you pick and choose your battles properly.

For parents, the Mindfulness Meditation Guide can be a great tool to stay calm and collected during stressful times – click here.

5. Not giving them chores at all.

Sure, they might not want to do chores, but your kids need chores. They don’t have to have a long list of things to do, but things like making their bed and so forth should be done. It’s going to help teach them to be responsible.

An illustrated Chore Chart for Kids can make daily tasks fun and engaging – click here.

6. Refusing to let them feel ‘pain.’

Your kids don’t need to be going through life miserable, but they do need to feel the negative emotions that come forth. If something hurts them, sit down and talk it through with them. They are people too and if you shelter them from pain all of their lives as they get older, processing it will be much harder.

The Children’s Emotional Toolkit Book can provide guidance on discussing feelings with your kids – click here.

7. Only praising them when they are recognized for something.

Your kids deserve praise for their efforts as well as their recognition. Sure, they might not have gotten an A, but you know they worked hard and studied as best they could. That B was their best effort, and you need to make sure they know that doing the best they could was good enough. Have realistic expectations for your kids.

A Reward Jar with Tokens can help parents give tangible praise for everyday achievements.

8. Not allowing them to be who they are or to try and figure out who they are.

Your kids are people too, and they are not going to be tiny mirror images of you. Let them express themselves and work to figure out who they want to be. They are not meant to be who you want them to be, they are meant to be who they want to be.

Encourage self-expression with a Kids’ Journal or Diary – a safe space for them to jot down thoughts and feelings – click here.

9. Scaring them into doing what you want all the time.

You cannot use fear to control your kids all the time. Sure, sometimes you may need to scare them, but overall they need to be taught to respect you and to do the things you ask of them through that. Fear is not a good means of getting things done and will ruin your relationship with them as they grow older.

The Positive Parenting Handbook provides strategies for effective and compassionate discipline- click here.

10. Being the parent who is their best friend and doesn’t want to make them mad.

You are a parent above all else. Your kids do not have to be your best friends. If you treat them as if they are nothing but your best friends, they will not respect you properly.

Parent-Child Bonding Games can strike the balance between fun and guidance.

11. Downplaying their emotions.

Your kids are going to feel things. Do not tell them that their feelings are wrong because they are not. That is what your kid is feeling and that’s that, period. Help them to understand things more properly by talking it out.

The Children’s Guide to Feelings and Emotions can assist in validating and understanding their complex feelings – click here.

12. Not being as present in their lives.

Your kids need you and while you might think grinding to keep them comfortable is the best way to provide for them, you still need to make time for them. They want you to be around and would rather have you in their lives on your off days than have you picking up extra shifts. Sure, if you have to work more, do it, but don’t forget to spend time with them when you are home.

Consider a Family Board Game Collection. It’s a simple way to ensure quality time is spent together on those precious off days.