Every single day, I hear the same comments from parents in my pediatrician office, on my blog, in response to my emails. They are all basically saying the same thing: I’m scared. So many parents feel that the world today is crazy and that it’s a really tough place to raise kids.
They’re not wrong. The truth is that there is reason to be scared. You turn on the news and see violence and cruelty around the world. Thousands of voices on television and social media clamor for our children’s attention. Guns are in schools, the media is over sexualized and today’s tv shows and movies portray disrespectful, self-centered kids.
This along with the social-media-driven world we live in, in which kids spend 40% of their waking hours looking at a screen, and where their online persona takes precedence over who they are in real life, and it’s clear that parents today really are living in some of the scariest times in our culture.
Because of this, I hear parents tell me over and over that they do not know how to handle a specific tough conversation with their son or a certain unexpected interaction with their daughter.
Adults do not know what to do and what to say in the times we’re living, so they end up parenting reactively, rather than proactively. They are parenting without a plan. And to raise great kids within today’s complex, scary world, you must have a proven plan.
Think about this. You wouldn’t enter any other area of your life without a plan. You don’t go into a presentation at work not knowing what you will say. You don’t purchase a home without scoping out the neighborhoods and the school systems first. You don’t buy a car without researching the safest options online.