Results of short run goals:
Does your child do as you or your partner asks 80 percent of the time without arguing, whining, or sulking?
A "yes" or "no" answer is irrelevant. The answer to the question depends on your child's age, temperament, personality, and emotional state. Children are still acting like, well, children. They make mistakes, learn how people and things work, and are not perfectly behaved half the time. For a child under five, a 40 percent "yes" answer is age-appropriate.
Results of long run goals:
You will know your parenting is working if you can answer "yes" to most of the questions, most of the time. Keep in mind that children gain these characteristics as they age. There will be more "yes" answers for older children than for young children.
* Does your child come to you to ask questions about sex, drugs, alcohol, peers, and life, at least once a week?
* Does your child listen to how you feel? Does your child care about how you feel? Does you child change his behavior because of how you feel, without the use of threats, punishments, or bribes?
* Does your child listen to your opinions, values, and beliefs with understanding?
* Does your child resolve conflicts with other children, including siblings, with respect, fairness, and a solution that is win-win for everyone?
* Does your child talk out conflicts with you with respect and a focus for finding solutions for everyone?
* Does your child know they can come to you for help for any reason, any time?
* Does your child share problems, anger, jealousy, joy, excitement, and most of his feelings with you?
* Is your child honest with you?
* Is your child happy to be himself?
* Does your child have friends that are kind and respectful to him?
* Is your child responsible to other people, teachers, employers, and volunteer committments?
* Does your child show empathy and concern for other people's plight?
* Does your child value your family and feel that he belongs?
* Does your child come to you for comfort if he is upset, sick, or hut?
* Is your child free to express all his emotions in your presence, and do you validate them?
* Does your child listen to his "gut feelings" about adults' interest and follow what his intuition tells him, rather than blindly obey any adult?
* Does your child do the right thing, even when no one is watching?
* Does your child help other people without being told to do so?
* Does your child listen to your teaching and try to implement it even when you are not present?
* Does your child learn from mistakes and still feel good about himself?
* Is he optimistic about other people, the world, and the impact he can have?
* Does he drop risky behaviors after an initial experimentation?
* Does your child find more than one solution to any problem?
* Does your child assert his needs to others?
* Does your child have the appropriate manners, language, and social skills for the occasion or sitation he is in ?
* Does your child obey the law, even when no one is watching?
* Does your child know unwritten social norms and obey them, even when no one is watching?
* Does your child learn appropriate life skills and academic skills, as per his age?
* Does your child enjoy spending time with you, even when with peers?
* Does your child speak to you with respect, including no backtalk or attitude?
* Does your child respect others property, your property, and the environment?
* Does your child pitch in with household tasks and chores without being asked?
* Does your child occassionally do things to please you without being asked?
Rather than looking at what you are doing as a parent, what do you see in your children? What do you need to work or where do you need to make changes... Take an evaluation every year or so and see where changes are in order. Work on a small change at a time. Too many at once, the shotgun approach, can be very discouraging for the child and parent.
For me, I know I need to work on the "Does your child speak to you with respect, including no backtalk or attitude" but I also know that she is still learning what this means as well... we have to find a better way of guiding her to this. I also need to work on when I am stressed, overwhelmed, or triggered on "Is your child free to express all his emotions in your presence, and do you validate them?"
What areas do you see need more work for your family?