By Andrea Arnold, Associate Editor/ Reporter
In a conversation I was having recently, it became so clear to me that good news does not travel as fast as bad news. I do not have kids, but I am privileged to play a part in many small people’s lives and have many friends who are parents. These parents are doing their best to raise their kids to be caring, responsible and valuable members of society.
So when I see a kid being amazing, I usually try to pass that information on to those responsible for raising them. After the aforementioned conversation, I am going to make that a goal.
Why are parents or guardians predisposed to a gut feeling of “what did they do now?” accompanied by an internal groan when someone says, “do you know what I saw your child do?” It is because that is often followed with a story of negative words or actions that have come from their charges. Why do we not put that much effort into building up the efforts of parents, and the actions of children?
Parents need to hear when their kid does something amazing, or kind, or responsible. I think that the child also needs to hear a positive reaction to their actions as well. I’m not suggesting anything big and grand because embarrassing them might put an end to it. Just a quiet word of encouragement to say, “Good job.”
I’m not naive. I know kids aren’t perfect. Parents do need to have the opportunities to help redirect a child’s actions, so sometimes, respectful tattling might be in order. Parents, as this information comes to you, take a moment to receive it in the manner in which it was intended.
I often hear people complain about the younger generations and the lack of respect they show to those around them. Let’s start building them up by recognizing the small moments of kindness and responsibility. By passing on to parents how amazing their kids are when they think no one is looking, we will also be building them up as they navigate the jungle that is child rearing.