Besides the obvious don’t drink, smoke, or swear parenting rules… I’ve observed a few other dos and don’ts to keep in mind. Hey maybe they’ll sound familiar!

Encourage their likes, not yours:

Too many cases there are parents who relive their childhood through their kid. Just because you weren’t able to land your big baseball career on your own, doesn’t mean you should push and urge your child to love the sport. Encourage what they like, there’s no such thing as too much support. Don’t be that parent.

Applaud for effort, not for grades:

Okay okay, let me clear that up… Yes, grades are important. But is a letter grade so important they should be punished or ridiculed for it? Clearly there is a difference between trying their best and simply not trying at all, and THAT is what you should be basing your applause on. The pressure of making sure they earn “good” grades for YOU only puts more stress on THEM as students. Learning should be fun. Unfortunately, children tend to drift from that mind state at a young age because of the early pressure of getting grades their parents are proud of (or not).

"All As this year! Got it?" Don’t be that parent.

Because I said so:

Is there anything about that phrase that doesn’t make you cringe?! This should never be a go to answer. This is merely an easy way out, and quite frankly the most irritating thing for a child to hear. Nothing beneficial comes from "because I said so…" because you know the child’s next response will be something along the lines of "BUT WHY?". Do you and your child a favor and give them a proper answer. In the end, they will understand or choose not to accept it. Or… try responding with a question. Either way, you will not have to keep repeating yourself. "Because I said so… because I said so…" Don’t be that parent.

Don’t make me:

You know what’s coming next! The infamous "Don’t make me tell your father". Don’t put on the act of miss nice guy because you don’t want to be the bad cop this time. All you are doing is giving your child a scary authority figure and that is not fair to your partner. Punishment decisions should be made in agreement without the threat of another loved one. Don’t be that parent.