Often parental egos result in bad decisions for the family. How do you know when your ego is taking over your parenting decisions?
When you make decisions for your family based on comparison
Whether it’s buying a house, a car, taking a vacation, or signing your child up for ballet, soccer, or piano lessons–if you’re doing it because so-and-so is doing it or because you want your child to succeed like little Josh down the street, it’s time to take a second look and make choices that are good for your family, no matter what anyone else is doing.
When you make decisions for your family based on what makes you proud
Our kids will naturally make us proud because we love them. But if you want to get your kid involved in activities because you need to feel good about them and their performance, then it’s time to listen to your child’s wishes, not your ego.
When you make decisions based purely on fear
When parents let fear drive their decision making, they are letting their own worries take the wheel. That is also a form of ego-driven parenting. Fears and worries are natural parental instincts, but they should not control every decision. Parents must do their homework–ask the right questions of the right people and get their facts straight–if they are going to make the wisest choices for their families.
When you make decisions for your family based only on your feelings
Whether you’re tired, fearful, excited, or just really really want to do something does not mean that the whole family feels the same way. Sometimes it’s good to hear opinions from family members, listen to their input, then make your decision based on what is best for the entire family. That being said, sometimes what is good for the entire family is also what’s good for you.
For example, you and your husband may want to go on a date, but the kids want you to stay home and do something with them. If you made that decision based on what they want, it actually wouldn’t be what’s best for the family. What’s best for the family is actually what you want–that Mom and Dad get some alone time to keep their marriage healthy.
Ask yourself WHY
If you get into the simple habit of asking yourself why you make a certain decision, then it will serve as a self-check against egotistical parenting. I know it takes time and effort to examine our motives, but your family will be happier and healthier for it.