• I hear all the time from other parents that they can’t get their kids to do something or another. Things like, I could never get my kids to sit down to listen to an entire book. I could never get my kids to use their manners. The list goes on and on. Here is the thing though, I don’t believe that any one parent is luckier than another.

    Don’t freak out if your kids don’t act like someone else’s.

    Yes, my kids mind their manners. Period. It’s something that my husband and I demanded. If your kids don’t, you’re not a bad parent. Your kids probably do something that I wish my kids did. Maybe your kids eat dinners that consist of more than macaroni and cheese! Or perhaps they don’t fuss at bedtime every single night. I sure wish my kids went to bed without the drama! Am I bad parent? No. I simply chose different battles than you did. I have a good friend who once told me that she couldn’t get her kids to not say, “Excuse me.” I noticed, however that she wasn’t even trying to encourage her kids to say it. At least not while I was around. It stands to reason though, that if she wasn’t trying in front of me, that she wasn’t trying constantly. In other words, it was a battle that she wasn’t fighting with all her gusto. She would however insist that her kids remain seated at the dinner table even after they were done eating. It never fails when they came to visit her kids sat at the table until all were finished with their snacks. It was impressive, but not something I’m willing to fight with my kids about.

    All of this is just to explain that don’t freak if your kids don’t act like someone else’s. Those parents chose their battles and rules to enforce and they are just different than the ones you chose to enforce with yours. if you find one you’d like to adopt to your family just know that all good behaviors require a good example and consistent reinforcement.