4th February 2013
Wouldn’t life be so much simpler if kids came with a set of rules? You know, you just followed the rules and they were guaranteed to grow up to be good, happy, successful adults?
Well, The Rules of Parenting by Richard Templar, just published in its second edition, can’t quite guarantee that, but what it does give you is a set of practical, doable guidelines to help make the whole parenting process much, much simpler.
Templar has made the collating of rules his area of expertise. He has published rules for many things including Love, Money, Wealth and indeed Life itself. Each set of rules are both personal and universal, and all his books are written in a cosy, gentle manner. They are, to quote his own description of his books, ‘reminders, not revelations’ and his talent is collecting his experiences and observations of others and explaining why they work (or don’t work) in a way which does not come over as either preaching or superior.
The Rules of Parenting is a manual for dealing with your kids on a day-to-day basis rather than focussing on crisis management – there is no information on how to deal with tantrums, or nappy rash or how to deal with kids who take drugs or drink – but shows you how to parent your children in a calm, decent and practical way which respects their individuality whilst also respecting your need to be an individual as well.
But if this sounds simple it is not; in the same way that to stay healthy you have to eat healthily, exercise regularly and make it a lifelong commitment, these rules are not one-time quick-fixes. And like a healthy lifestyle you need to keep on using them until they become a habit.
Does this sound too much like hard work? Relax. No really, the first rule is to Relax. This first chapter sets the tone for the book, and the message is, yes there are rules you need to follow, but you will make mistakes. Just remember to do it right next time. Your children won’t be perfect and life won’t be perfect. However by raising your children with a mixture of love, integrity and common sense, they might just grow up to be the good, happy, successful adults that you hoped for.
About the Author: Jacqui O'Brien is the Editor of eParenting.