Applied Theology
by WordExplain

A Potpourri of Biblical and Practical Perspectives
on a Variety of Topics . . .

Parenting Q&A
Raising Self-Starting Children

by Christa Bartsch

November, 2008 

Q:  How can we avoid making our children too dependent on us?

A:     “Children will live up or down to our expectations.” 

This is a quote my husband and I heard somewhere and really see the value of.  It basically means that if we believe in and challenge our children, they will “live up to” what we expect of them.  If, however, we coddle them and don’t challenge them, they will “live down” to those expectations. 

We, moms especially, can get in the rut of doing too much for our children.  We’re used to doing everything for them from birth so we just get into the habit of doing things that they may be old enough to do themselves.  It’s good for them to learn responsibility in their little world and not to lean on us too much when not necessary.  It will help them mature and will help free us up to tend to other things if we're able to see when a child is ready to take on a new task for him/herself.  

Some of these things may be:  no longer using a bib, no longer using a sippy cup, feeding themselves, putting on their own clothes, putting their pajamas away in the morning, brushing their own teeth, going to the bathroom alone, taking their dishes to the kitchen, helping with younger siblings, doing their own seatbelt in the car.  Try giving them some responsibility and see how freeing it is for you AND for them! 


by Christa Bartsch

October, 2008

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About the Author:  Christa Bartsch is a stay-at-home mom who lives in the  Midwest.  She has led seminar workshops for women on marriage and parenting.  She has been happily married for twenty years and is the mother of five children. 

WordExplain by James T. Bartsch

(Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.  Used by Permission.)

Updated March 30, 2014

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