Parenting by Neglect

Do you have a wild child? I do. This wild man of mine has the loving nickname of Troll. 

To be honest he was my easiest delivery and my easiest baby, until he became mobile...then it all went downhill from there. 

My sweet little Troll was born for adventure. He started leaving the house and going on adventures as soon as he learned to open a door. He was picked up more than once by the cops and nice neighbors. 

We installed locks high up on the door. It didn't matter, he would still get out. 

Then one day, at the pool, I'm sitting on the side trying to become a bronzed goddess when I see the Troll going OFF the diving board!! Holy crap! I stood up to run in to save my baby from drowning; only to see him swim safely off to the side.

I felt incredibly embarrassed that my kid had figured out how to swim on his own. I started to joke that I was parenting by neglect. But, the more I have thought of that moment I realized that there is a beauty to parenting by neglect. I thought of my own childhood. I was raised by a single mom who had to work full time and I had to figure out a lot of things on my own.

Now please don't think I'm suggesting that you truly neglect your kids. What I am suggesting is letting them figure some things out on their own, and for a lack of a better phrase, get them off the teat. :) Allow them to make some mistakes and figure out life. Burn some meals, ruin some clothes in the washing machine, scrape their knees, and so on. 

Being home with my kids everyday for the last sixteen years has taught me a lot. Who knew? When you were little didn't you think adults knew everything? Obviously we don't, but one thing that I do know is that I want my monkeys to succeed in life, and I can help them by letting them figure some stuff out on their own.

A quote I love says, "What if I fall? Oh, but my darling, what if you fly?"

Megan ThomasComment