So Your Kid Didn’t Come with a User Guide. Now What?

Parenting is hard (especially without a handbook), but it’s not impossible. Pediatrician and parenting expert Dr. Meg Meeker shares tips on finding guidance.
Last Updated
April 22, 2019
posted on
December 9, 2016
Minute Read

Wouldn’t it be nice if our kids came with a user guide? If after you gave birth in the hospital, the nurse handed you a “How to Raise This Child” pamphlet that told you everything you needed to know to about raising your child?

Unfortunately, this isn’t the case.

You’re thrown into parenthood, ready or not, as if the world is telling you, “Good luck. Figure it out!” And you spend the next 18 years experimenting, floundering and hoping you’re doing things right.

You can make parenting a guessing game or you can get sound guidance.

Have you ever tried to assemble a piece of furniture without looking at the instruction manual? What usually ends up happening? Inevitably something is off or wobbly. A shelf collapses. Or you realize you used the wrong screw in the wrong place.

You can’t successfully assemble something without some sort of instructions. It’s the same with children. You can make parenting a guessing game and hope you come out with a child who isn’t too wobbly with a loose screw, or you can get sound guidance. You can do your homework, learn from others and do your best to be intentional about the way you parent.

This is your best shot at assembling a great kid.

But how do you get that guidance? Where are you supposed to go for advice?

It seems as if everybody on the internet is a parenting expert these days. They know exactly what you need to do and what’s wrong with your child. Parenting advice can be more overwhelming than it is helpful because there’s so much of it.

Parenting advice can be more overwhelming than it is helpful because there’s so much of it.

This is why I created a series of online parenting courses and resources that cover everything you need to know about being a parent to a great kid. I didn’t create these to add to the noise out there. I created them to quiet the noise, to give you a one-stop-shop for all things parenting.

I’ve been a pediatrician and mother for over 30 years. Along the way, I’ve learned a thing or two about how to be a parent to a great kid. One of the biggest mistakes I see parents make is focusing on issues that seem big, but actually aren’t that important:

Should I only let my toddler eat organic food?

What is the best car seat on the market?

What sport should I put my child in that will give him the best chance at the Olympics?

You can make yourself crazy by focusing on the small things. If you really want to raise great kids, focus on the bigger issues and the other stuff will fall into place. Learn how to love your child well, how to instill strong character, how to discipline with courage and kindness.

These are the big things that will make a big difference for your child, and I cover all of them and more in my flagship product, The 12 Principles of Raising Great Kids. Only 12? Yes. I’ve spent years researching parenting and what surfaced are these 12 principles that I believe all parents must learn if you want to raise a great kid.

Parenting is hard, but it’s not impossible. Even though your child didn’t come with a user guide, be encouraged, there is hope. Sort through the noise, and focus on what matters. And I’m here to help!

Dr. Meg Meeker, MD

Practicing pediatrician, parent, grandparent, coach, speaker, and author. Say hello @MegMeekerMD

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