Our children need to know that we accept and love them regardless of what they may do, but also that certain forms of behavior are not acceptable to us. We should, however, investigate for ourselves why this behavior is not acceptable.
Is it because it will be potentially harmful to the child, to someone else, or to us? Or is it simply because we are programmed that it should not be done? Or does the behavior conflict with our expectations based on our personal needs and dreams for the child? Or are we afraid of what the others will think about our child and subsequently about us? This has a lot to do with your child’s self esteem and self image.
We must be very clear about why we are rejecting a certain behavior. Our rejection can come out of a place of real love and concern for the child, if, in fact, we are not simply protecting our own interests. As long as a certain behavior does no real harm to anyone, it is best to allow the child to pursue it. Self Esteem.
Something within them, some need is guiding them to explore that kind of activity. They have something to learn through doing that. This does not mean that there are not moments where control or even natural or logical consequences may be necessary. But we need to be sure that the reasons are valid and have to do with real issues of safety or morality and not because we are disappointed with their grades or selection of hobbies, interests or friends. Self Esteem.
In order to love our children unconditionally, we will need to start loving ourselves unconditionally. We will have to let go of all the prerequisites we have put on our own self-love and Self Esteem. We will need to love ourselves even though we are not perfect, even though we make mistakes, even when others do not love and accept us. The more we free our self-love from the various prerequisites, the more our love for our children and others will become unconditional.
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