What Privileges are Appropriate for Your Kids?
In regards to your kids’ privileges:
You have so much power at the very initial stage of offering choices to your kids. That moment is when you can either choose to set the bar very high or at a reasonable level!”
In this series of articles, we’re talking about the 9 factors that parents must keep in mind about your kids’ privileges. So far I have talked about the first two factors, the power of privileges, and factor #3, which talks about how privileges are always earned. Today I’d like to talk about privilege factors #4 & #5.
Remember, having to earn something is the major difference between rights and privileges.
4) – Privileges should match your kid’s age.
I’ve seen many parents get themselves into trouble because their kids are smart or mature for their age and talk them into what they believe they deserve and are able to earn. However, other factors are involved, including environmental, social, and legal standards.
One of my clients was only eleven years old when she tried to convince her parents she was old enough to take care of her eight-year-old little sister while her parents went on a date. Although she was smart and responsible for her age, her parents explained it would be against the law (not to mention common sense) to leave her alone with her sister.
Children don’t have the foresight to understand the significance of most potential dangers. It is the parents’ responsibility to protect them from both prospective and virtual dangers – what every kid is exposed to on the Internet.
The fact is that some kids are more developmentally mature than they are chronologically. This difference may lead to them pushing the boundaries of appropriateness when it comes to using cell phones with web access, Internet use, and being active on social media sites such as Facebook. It is the parents’ responsibility to set and maintain boundaries regarding such privileges. Many developmental psychologists agree, for example, that children under a certain age should not use social media such as Facebook without close supervision. In my opinion, Internet access in general should be limited and closely supervised for all children under the age of fifteen. It is always the parents’ responsibility to keep kids safe.
5) – Privileges don’t have to cost parents anything.
It’s never too late to train your kids to appreciate non-monetary rewards. Not only is such training a very valuable life lesson, but it will save you tons of money! Keeping in mind the age appropriateness of the privilege, your budget and the time allowed to earn the privilege, your options are almost endless.
Dr. Sherkat is a parent strategist who is available to do Parent Education Workshops, either Private or PTA Sponsored Classes.
Contact her at 425-772-6698.