Parents, children and boundaries

God gives parents such great treasures in our children, and with those treasures such tremendous responsibility to raise and teach them - to help them become individuals who are joyful and purpose driven to glorify God and bless the lives of those around them. 

As my children are getting older, I am realizing more each day the delicate balance between being a mom who does things for her children, who does things with her children, and who allows her children to do for themselves.  The boundary expansion from an infant or toodler who needs supervision and guidance in everything to more individual freedoms as they get older and more mature is challenging for parent and child.

A parenting class my husband and I took once used the term, parenting inside the funnel.  The concept is that each child lives in a funnel of boundaries.  As a toddler they are at the bottom of the funnel where the boundaries are very restricted.  As they grow in age and maturity, they move up the funnel and the boundaries are expanded.  If you allow freedoms outside the funnel wall your child does not have the ability or maturity to appropriately handle those freedoms and the result is poor behavior or frustration for the child, and unnecessary challenges for the parent. 

I appreciated the following post I read this week.  As I seek to "parent in the funnel", I hope to develop a home life free of the frustration for myself and my children that comes by placing too many restrictions or allowing too much freedom. 

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