Parents bring their children up in different ways. The way a parent brings up a child influences that child’s development and behaviour. Previously we saw four different, but problematic parenting styles. Somebody wrote: “Thank you so much for pointing the problematic parenting styles out, but can you elaborate on positive parenting.” How does positive and constructive parenting look like?
The positive parenting style is a developing parenting style. The goal is to develop the child’s character.
- When the parent is loving and spend quality time with the child, the child will have security.
- When the parent is encouraging, the child develops confidence.
- When the parent is comforting towards the child, the child becomes compassionate.
- When the parent is sincere, the child becomes more honest.
- When the parent teaches the child, the child will develop wisdom.
A Biblical Example of positive parenting is in 2 Timothy 1:5–7; 3:14–15. Timothy was raised by a godly mother and grandmother. Lois and Eunice modeled sincere faith, which encouraged love and developed self-discipline. They also trained Timothy from infancy in the Holy Scriptures, which led him to a saving faith in Jesus. Timothy became a leader in the church at a young age and was greatly respected by the apostle Paul. “And the child [Jesus] grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon him.” (Luke 2:40).
When one parent focuses the majority of their attention on a physically healthy child, sometimes that parent is using the child as a buffer against intimacy with the marriage partner. One problem with this adult behaviour is that the child feels excessively responsible for the enmeshed parent. If this happens in a marriage, the parent is not modeling a healthy bonding in marriage before the child. Although an enmeshed parent feels that investing in the child is all-important, there needs to be balance. However, Ecclesiastes 3:1–2 says it best …“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1–2)