Are you a Credit Card Parent?

What is a Credit Card Parent, you may be asking yourself? No, it is not buying every baby purchase with a credit card, but good guess. Credit Card Parenting is a certain method of parenting that puts off the hard stuff and discipline until the future.

“You’ll still pay the price of training in the future, but with compound interest.”

Let that sink in for a bit. Whatever it is you are not doing now that you know you should be doing…. you’ll still have to do it later. It’ll just be harder. It will be more work, more hassle, and you’ll come up against a stronger will. Here are some common areas we can put off training because it may feel like a hassle.

Obeying a Parent Command!

Babies as young as 8 months can learn to listen to a parent’s wish and obey it. Parents are often surprised when my kids come after I call their name once. I did the hard work when they were young! Around one-year-old, I instituted a One-And-Done Method, meaning I would say a command, give my children a few seconds to obey. If they didn’t obey, I would physically show them what obeying the command meant. That sounds a bit violent, but please believe me, there was no abuse or violence involved. For example, if I called for my son to come to me and he didn’t, I would take his hand and guide him to where I was while repeating the command. This hard-wired in their brains, when I say something, I say it once and I mean it.

Manners

Manners are a lot harder to learn when you’ve spent a few formative years saying “gimme now.” I instituted manners starting at the dinner table. Once my kids were able to speak fairly clearly and repeating everything we said (~2 years old), I began having them say “Please” before giving them their food. If they didn’t say it, I would wait 3 seconds then say “Please” for them to repeat.

Once they said “Please”, I would set the plate down on their dining table and put my food over the plate, waiting for them to say “Thank You”. zvakare, if I didn’t hear “Thank You”, I would wait 3 seconds and say “Thank You” myself for them to repeat. Doing this three times a day for a few months, and “Please” and “Thank You” were ingrained in their vocabulary.

Independent Playtime

From a young age if you teach your children to play with their toys alone for an appropriate and (secretly) supervised amount of time, by the time they are about 18 months, they’ll be able to play quietly in their room for about an hour and give you some space. I don’t mean they wander to their room when they feel like it.

I mean you put them in their room at a designated time of the day for a specified period and they happily play. If you do independent playtime in the morning you can actually make the bed, do last night’s dishes, straighten up the house, and get this… SHOWER! Afterwards, you’ll be refreshed and they’ll be ready for some interaction. Training to entertain themselves prevents the “I’m bored” phrase.

Potty Learning

Many parents dread the potty training process for a variety of reasons, but children actually have the ability to be potty trained very early in life. Many Non-Western cultures potty train their child before 12 months. Check out my article for my in-depth article Potty Training Early, but briefly some benefits include:

  • Potty-trained children avoid diaper rash and diaper-related infections—like yeast, giardia, and rotavirus.
  • Parents save money and time on diapering and have more flexibility when searching for preschools.
  • Kids learn how to sit for longer amounts of time, which develops their self-control (improving intelligence and behavior)
    • They are also more sedentary and have not mastered and fallen in love with RUNNING!

Healthy Sleep Habits

Rocking the baby to sleep, inserting the pacifier every twenty-five seconds, and giving all other manners of sleep props just puts off the inevitable. (Note: I love the pacifier, but think you need to use it wisely). The inevitable being the battle between them and you to go to sleep at a time of YOUR choosing. If you start promoting good sleep habits early you’ll have a baby who sleeps well and naps well, and that’ll transition into a toddler who does the same.

Put in the hard work early and reap the benefits early and later. You can train your children much younger than you think. Get a strategy and stick to it. Then you’ll live off the rewards program and stop paying interest!

Have any issue with the above parenting areas? Let’s chat about it. Sign up for a Free 30-minute Consult today!