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Wellness

How To Be A Better Mom

My own mother, like many mothers we encounter, was never there, and I’ve loved every minute her absence has cost me. In the course of my pregnancy, while we both were preparing to go back to work, I got to work paying myself back by learning how to be a good parent. What I learned will change how mothers raise the kids in their lives. It will change how dads can get their kids back on track and it will change how fathers are evaluated by their sons and daughters — and, ultimately, by society.

My own mom was never there, and I’ve loved every minute her absence has cost me. In the course of my pregnancy, while we both were preparing to go back to work, I got to work paying myself back by learning how to be a good parent. What I learned will change how mothers raise the kids in their lives. It will change how fathers can get their kids back on track and it will change how fathers are evaluated by their sons and daughters — and, ultimately, by society. The good news is that many fathers — and mothers — learn these best practices over a lifetime of practicing and sharing them with children. The bad news is that these are hard to “learn” and are often difficult to integrate into one’s normal routine. But if we were all just a little more intentional, we could make sure most people adopted these same habits, and then the rest of society could start adopting these habits as well.

The good news is that many fathers — and mothers — learn these best practices over a lifetime of practicing and sharing them with children. The bad news is that these are hard to “learn” and are often difficult to integrate into one’s normal routine. But if we were all just a little more intentional, we could make sure most people adopted these same habits, and then the rest of society could start adopting these habits as well. There is a lot of information about being a great father available and easy to find, most especially at places like dadsforlife.org . But I’ve found that dads who go to these sites are not practicing what we learn there or applying it. We know that the real test as a father is how he deals with conflict, with loss of respect, with frustration and with abandonment of family plans and friendships.

In this book I have tried to apply what I learned about raising children to a number of situations throughout my life, and I have come to realize that the same advice applies everywhere. I can’t tell you, for example, where I learned that it is okay that kids walk on the left side of the road. But I can say that as a father I’ve learned enough to understand that I’ve got something to offer that may be helpful. In fact , I now know enough to help those who are asking the questions.

The book is divided into eight chapters: Introduction, Life in the Moment, Working with Change in the Moment, Respect and the Parenting of Other People, The Choice of Time, The Value of Time, How to Make More of My Time, and The Power of Choice . All of these chapters cover things that all fathers in all families, no matter their background or experience, should be familiar with.

I have tried to make the book approachable to both new and experienced dads. I have provided a number of examples to illustrate the points made in the book, but most important of all, I haven’t tried to be a “teacher’s pet” — I don’t try to force the best practices onto the reader. Rather, I let the examples do the teaching, since, as a childless, divorced parent, I have very little knowledge of these things.

Most of the information included in the book has been the result of work for this book. But, of course, as a reader of this book, you can’t help but be an author. And, if you have questions or suggestions about the book, the website, or the author, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

If there is any doubt or concern that any topic, or the whole book in fact, is “mystifying,” that’s a problem with you, the reader. If you do not want to learn how to be a better parent and have to turn to self-help books, books by mothers, parenting forums etc. as “the answers,” then be sure and pick up a quality book that is not based on myth and stereotypes, that is based in knowledge and evidence, that can be understood by those who can understand.