Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Be careful with your parenting style, because Children See, Children Do

Here’s a parenting truth that is so obvious, yet many parents are guilty of not realizing it: Children See, Children Do.  In other words, what the little kids see mom and dad do, they will copy.  If they copy long enough, that is what they eventually become. 

Be careful with your parenting style, folks, because all parents influence their children.  The issue is, are we influencing them positively or negatively?  Below is a video that very powerfully shows how strong our influence as parents can be.

"I'm gonna be just like my daddy!"
It’s unfortunate that some parents have the “do-what-I-say-not-what-I-do” parenting style.  They say “don’t smoke” or “respect women” or “cussing is bad” and other rhetoric; but here they are saying certain words when they are mad, smoke cigarettes themselves, and have some questionable magazines at home.  Hmmm.

But, hey, I am sometimes guilty of this, too.  I’m kind of a messy person, yet I tell my kids to keep their rooms clean as much as possible.  So do they follow what I say or what I do?  Well, let’s just say that when you come over my house, stay downstairs.

This Friday, September 8, 2011, at CCF, my young couples group will tackle the 2nd session of PARENTING THAT MAKES A DIFFERENCE, titled: HOW TO POSITIVELY INFLUENCE YOUR CHILDREN. 

Our first session was fantastic, and our group discussions that evening were some of the most engaging and animated in our long history of engaging and animated discussions.  I’m sure this coming session will be even more so.

The foreword for the workbook goes like this: “This session will give you practical guidelines on how to draw close to your children in order for you to positively influence them.  Maintaining good relationships is the key to influence and so will be the main focus here.”  Sounds good to me.

So how do we positively influence our kids?  Do you want to find out?

Here’s the short answer: the main points of the session we’ll take up this Friday.  Of course, there are LOTS of points within these main points, but since most of you can’t attend, this anemic list will have to do:

1.  Good MODELING.  You have to be the person that you want them to become.  I’m not talking about perfection, because that’s impossible.  I’m talking about authenticity.

Philippians 3:17 – “Brethren, join me in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us.”

2.  Good RELATIONSHIP.  The closer the relationship, the greater the influence.

1 Corinthians 15:33 – “Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company corrupts good morals.’”  

3.  TIME.  The more time you spend with the person, the greater is your influence on him/her.

Deuteronomy 6:7 – “And you shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.”  

4.  LISTENING.  the more you LISTEN to your children the more you UNDERSTAND them and the more you understand them the more you can INFLUENCE them.

James 1:19-20 - "This you know, my beloved brethren. But let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God."

5.  POSITIVE words.  Boy oh boy do Pinoy parents have a problem with this one.  But the truth is, words impact lives.

Proverbs 18:21 – “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”

Ephesians 4:29 – “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need at the moment that it may give grace to those who hear.”  

6.  UNCONDITIONAL love.  Harsh rules do not positively change a person.  Unconditional love does.

Romans 5:8 – “But God demonstrates His love for us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” 

7.  Expect the BEST. 
What we expect our kids to be, they will live up to it.  If we think they’re stupid, they become stupid.  But if we expect the best from them, they will soar and even demolish our expectations.

Philippians 1:6 – “ For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus."

Now, do you want the long answer?  Well, there’s way too much content in this study to give it to you on this blog.  Not only does the speaker, Peter Tan Chi, tell you WHAT you have to do (the outline above), but he gives you techniques on HOW to make it happen...and I can't put it here.  The only way you can get my long answer, the answer you deserve, is to…JOIN US!

My wife and I lead a group of about 7 young couples (late 20’s to early 30’s) and we would love to have you aboard.  We learn from each other (in addition to the fantastic material we use), strengthen each other, encourage each other, and become accountable to each other. 

Make this effort to Positively Influence Our Children by joining us.  The consequences of our failure here is too great.  Leave a comment or an email to let me know you’re interested.

Update:  Check out my blog on our 3rd session, which talks about how to discipline your children without shouting.  That blog post also teaches you the right way to spank your child. 

Recommended Reading:

You can also check out other books I recommend for dads and you can also check out the rest of my parenting articles here.


  1. I agree with you, that is why my husband and I are very careful in what we say and do in front of our son. We want to have a good kid, that is why we need to be a good parent as well.

  2. Oh gosh, the clip has touched me deeply more than I expect.

  3. so true! my lil guy has been imitating some sentences in our day to day conversations.

  4. Agree. That is why we as parents should set a good example and we should also discipline ourselves especially in front of the kids.

  5. I've been trying to become a good dad to my daughter, but unfortunately I'm abroad. I just make sure to spend quality time with her when I'm in Manila.

  6. Of course. I think that what children see, they do. And if they see our politicians doing their very dirty job, then, what would the Philippines be? Is there a chance of change?

    Sabi nga ng isang comrade, kung gusto nating umayos ang Pilipinas sa future, then we need to wipe up the adults today.

    Pero I don't believe in such. Possible? Siguro. Pero hindi naman dapat ganun ang gawin, right?

  7. Action speak louder than words and if kids see opposite of what's told to them and they'll follow those actions so its always good to be a role model.

  8. Amen. Go teach your child what the Scriptures tell so. Set by example ika nga. Children are really good at mimicking their parents antics and behavior.

  9. Amen, first of all children MUST know how to fear the Lord, and it is up for us parents to guide them.

  10. Completely agree. It's really important for parents to train kids by words and by example. It not only teaches them the right things to do, but how it is important show them that talk is not cheap, and not to be double-standard.

  11. Children see, children do. I most definitely agree with that line. Telling children this and that if we don't heed our own teaching is nothing.

  12. Very true. That is why I always see to it that I am a good model to my two kids. They can easily copy and imitate every time I got mad at them.

  13. True true!!! I am always careful of what I say and what I do whenever I'm with my younger cousin and niece.

  14. I'm a new mom and to be honest I'm still looking for the best parenting style that we can adopt. I do agree that what kids see, the kids do.

    I'll have a 3 years old and a 1 year old this coming December, I just hope its not yet to late for me.

  15. after all parents become better person when they have kids so their kids become better like them, well their might be gaps and lapses but parents would always make their best effort to be always the best for their kids and so they influence their kids to become good persons..

  16. probably explains why they learn so much stuff through television or whatever is in front of them.

  17. Very true! we parents must lead by example, encouraging and giving praises even the littlest things that they do.

  18. yes, it's true.. ad parenting really is a tough job - i mean tough-happy, tough-fulfilling. because you have the responsibility to their character and self-esteem building aside from providing what they need.

  19. As parents, we have to set a good example to our children. We may not be PERFECT... but we may do our best to be ideal ones for them.

  20. This is absolutely correct! What children see children do. Proven already with my children. So we should be watchful at all times with our words and actions.

  21. Great advise for parents. Yes, we parents should set a good example to our children.

  22. Indeed, action speaks louder than words.

  23. some parents are walking contradiction ... hay hard to deal with them sometimes ...

  24. Thanks for the parenting tip. Kids or children mimic's their parents action. True!

  25. I am single but I am helping raise 2 nieces and even if they only come to my house every weekend still I try to inculcate to them good behavior and manners so they will grow as better individuals in time =)

  26. As a dad myself, I agree to this as well as they can inherit probablly all your mannerisms be it good or bad. But still there is no Perfect Parents in this world, just strive to be the best for them. ^_^

  27. This is why parenting is such a big responsibility. A child's life will always be affected.

  28. I like that you add recommended readings after the post to serve as additional resource to support the article. I do hope that one day we can have more Filipino authors like the Dionisio couples (Teen Crush), Chinkee Tan, Jayson Lo and many more to write about these topics as well to make it more relevant to the Philippine setting.


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