Relationships – Teach your child not only by example but by explanations what it means to have successful relationships in life. Not just romantic relationships but friendships and working relationships. So many children, even the brilliant and sometimes especially the brilliant ones, can not find a good fit in a career because they are not able to relate to others in any setting. It is not enough that they are well educated; they also have to have common sense and relational sense.

They are individuals, they are not an extension of you – Lastly I will leave you with this, another epiphany  I had while raising my own children. They are individuals and not just miniatures of their parents. We can not expect them to know what we are thinking or expect them to do exactly as we do. I am not talking about behavioral issues here; they must abide by the rules. I am talking about individual thoughts and desires. They will have a unique bent all of their own and if they choose a different path from the one you traveled down, as long as it is not a hazardous path, then they need to be free to explore the paths that suit their personalities. We all have certain expectations for our children and we can offer up suggestions and give opinions and encourage them in those ways. But if they choose another path which may not be the one we would have chosen but it makes them happy and they can be productive in it then we must back off and let them go. Having a goal is primary; it is when they have no goal at all that you should be concerned.

These are just a few tips from a veteran parent who has made a lot of mistakes and had many victories as well. It is always hindsight that serves us better but if we can glean anything from someone who has already gone down the parental path we will be that much ahead.

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