About to turn 8 years old, my oldest daughter has asked me for space. 'Mom, I want you to let me do things to myself.' For her, as she explained to me, it is a matter of trust and, although I did not expect to hear this phrase so soon - for me she is still my little girl - I have decided to put a bit of land in the middle and agree to her request. These are the things that I let my daughters decide to do for themselves.
When your children are babies, you want them to grow up because you think that everything is going to be easier and more bearable, but as the years go by, you realize that at that stage in which they cannot express their preferences, everything is simpler. that we are the parents who choose for them and there is no type of discussion, negotiation or bad faces. When your children are babies, things can be difficult, because you have to adapt to each other, but also, although it is hard to believe, they are quite simple.
As they grow older and begin to forge their own identities and opinions (some annoying to us), it can be a daunting task to let go of that control we've exercised for so long, because we already have it built into our own routine. But raising an independent child It is important so that as an adult, they can be able to face a world in which they continually have to take paths and directions, and do so with confidence and without hesitation.
I admit that it is difficult for me, because I feel that little by little it is separating from me, opens its wings and flies by itself, but I also know that when I look back, I will think that it was the best for her. And while I squirm inside and try to keep my desire to control everything off, I let my daughter make those low-risk decisions that can help her become a judicious, independent, and autonomous adult. What things am I talking about?
From Monday to Friday, my daughter wears a uniform, so little else can be added to how she is or wants to be dressed every morning, but when the weekend comes, everything changes. Depending on the plan we make that day, I choose one outfit or another, but I have already stopped doing it, because as I take the clothes out of the closet I have to put them back because she does not like my option. She prefers to combine colors, prints and fabrics without taking into account fashions, she has her own style and I will not be the one who will not allow her to develop it!
2. Combing alone
When it comes to hairstyle, she innovates every day to see what suits her best and makes her feel good. So we went from wearing a high ponytail, to putting on a 'street style' roll tape or asking me to make a braid (she is still learning) that gives it a sweeter and more childish air. I like her in every way and she is happy trying hairstyles. Everyone happy!
3. Shower herself
Perhaps it is one of the things that has cost me the most, due to the fact that she slips and hits her head, but she almost demanded it and ... she is already 8 years old! At the time of bathing, Elena creates her own spa, with a hair mask included, and she only calls me to bring her the towel. There are times when I notice that perhaps you have not washed your head well, but nothing happens, you will learn!
4. Choose your own friends
I never liked my parents telling me who I had or didn't have to go with, so now that I'm a mother I try not to make the same mistake. My daughter has had her BFF since kindergarten and has been attached to her ever since, and I am glad. The only two pieces of advice that I have given you in this regard is not to close yourself to meeting more boys and girls because the more people, the more fun !, and that if someone hurts or treats you badly, it is because no is a true friend!
5. Sign up for extracurricular activities you want
I have to admit that here I am a bit divided, because there are things that I consider to be non-negotiable, such as reinforcing the learning of a language, and, on the other hand, I think that extracurricular activities are a fun way for children to discover what things and what things they don't like to do or are good at. That is why at home, Mom and Dad have 'forced' them to go to English classes, but we have also talked about what draws their attention to encourage it, in this case, swimming and dancing.
6. Prepare your backpack for school
If there is something that bothers me a lot, it is someone snooping in my bag, which is the backpack for my daughter. And it is that, in addition to carrying her books, she puts her most personal and intimate small objects there, which she shares with her schoolmates: her notes in her mini-diary, her objects of attachment ...
I know that of all these things, some you will do better than others, but all of them will help your development and your self-esteem. And you, what do you do to promote the autonomy of your children?
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