My children need to know what failure is. In order for a child to know he has failed he needs to know what is expected. There needs to be a standard. An absolute. And if it’s not met – if they fail – the standard cannot be lowered to spare their feelings of failure. (Obviously if you set the standards unrealistically high then you would lower them, but that, I believe, is a different matter.)
I don’t think any parent wants to see their child not do well at something, let alone have the child feel like they didn’t do well at something, but if the standards we set out for our children continually get lowered because we don’t want them to fail they will never learn from their failures. They will never get better. There is so much to be learned from failure and within the loving walls of a family unit, with built in cheerleaders to encourage along the way, now is the time to let our children fail, and thereby learn, before they are released into a world which will taunt and jeer at their failures.
My children need to know that they are loved when they fail. My love for my children is not based on their performance. I want them to do well. I want them to grow and to learn. But when they fail at something my love for them does not change. I do not expect them to fail, but I know that they will.
Day 10 of 31 Days of Communicating With Our Children. Click here to see all posts in this series.