Paving the path to a brighter future

Updated: Apr 25, 2020

Not only can right parenting and involvement benefit a child academically but also provide them with emotional and mental support to face the challenges and prepare them for a better life. Parents must build a strong relationship with their child to improve their child’s social-interactions. Because the parent-child relationship is the first and most basic one, its’ stability directly contributes to the development of the child’s other relationships. For instance, if a child is raised without parents, they will be unable to form relationships with peers as they have not even achieved the most basic connection. In addition, poor parenting can disrupt the social development of children, with extreme cases leading to the development of reactive attachment disorder” which, starting at the age of 5 impairs the child's ability to develop stable affectional and attachment bonds. Unsurprisingly, children with better parental relationships also excel in peer relationships, but how do parents affect children beyond their ability to form bonds? Parental influence tends to determine a child’s behavior and, in turn, their friends. In a study consisting of twelve thousand teenagers, there was a positive correlation between better parental relationships and fewer violent behaviors, drug usage, and unsafe choices. Parents have the power to guide their children in the right direction, protecting them from negative influences of society. Imagine what children would do if parents were not there guiding them down the right path. The next generation would be a hopeless mob of useless beings, addicted to drugs and alcohol, without the proper morals instituted by their parents.

Parental influence is not only important in regards to improving one’s social environment but also crucial to bettering their mental health. Parental interaction improves the mental well-being of children. Parental influence on a child heavily influences the development of a young child’s self-esteem. Self-esteem, also described as one’s self-image, is crucial to building one’s confidence and happiness. An adult’s supportive behavior, such as setting age-appropriate expectations, encouraging children to try new things, and providing a caring and nurturing environment, is necessary to boost one’s self-esteem. A high self-esteem motivates children to succeed. Parents must boost their child’s self-esteem by encouraging autonomous activity in infancy when children begin to feed themselves. Through physical affection and clear verbal communication, parents can construct a strong, positive relationship with their child. However, if a parent fails to support their child through such means, this can have a detrimental impact on their child’s self-esteem. World Health by Gale reports that negative parental communication always becomes internalized, and children start to practice negative self-talk, generating their own self-reinforcing negative messages. Examples of such negative interactions include threats of abandonment and belittling comparison between siblings. A parent may ask their child, “Why can’t you be more like you brother” or “If you don't stop that right now, I'm leaving you here” . These comments undermine children’s efforts to build a positive relationship with their parents and encourages thoughts of self-hate and worthlessness. However, parents must improve their child’s self-confidence with positive affirmations. Therefore, it is absolutely necessary that a parent constructs a positive relationship with their child to maintain the child’s mental well-being.

Parental support and care have a profound influence in establishing a foundation for the child’s successful future. It is evident that parents and children need to spend quality time together and have healthy communication between them. Parent involvement not only helps the child academically, socially and emotionally but will also help to improve teacher morale and provide parent satisfaction for making a difference in their child’s life. In return, children must also value their parent’s involvement and reap the benefits of a healthy parent-child relationship. So parents, take your time, involve with your child, and learn their needs because it’s worth the effort, and it will pay great dividends in the future.

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