4 things you should NEVER do for your kids

Posted June 6

We are constantly told what we should be doing for our kids, but what about the things we shouldn't do? Here are 4 things you should never find yourself doing for them. (Deseret Photo)

Parenting can be difficult. It can be hard to know what is the right and wrong way to raise your child. There are different methods, ideals and dos and don’ts. It can be confusing to know just what is right for them, but there are certain things that you should never do for your kids. These are things that can have negative consequences if you make doing them a regular habit.

If you really want what’s best for your kids, do not do the following for them:

Make excuses

If your kids are not living up to their commitments, or they are acting out, it is not good for you to excuse their behavior. It may be embarrassing to admit that they are having a tantrum because of a reason that is really no good reason at all, but saying they are just tired or hungry is excusing what is really going on. It just enables him to continue the behavior without any consequences. Even if your child is older, they may need to feel embarrassment because of their behavior in order to understand that it is not acceptable to act that way. Make him tell why he cannot do something or behaves in a certain way.

Their work for them

There is a difference between helping and taking over. If you find that you have put in 90% of the effort on your daughter’s science homework, what is that showing her? It is not teaching her anything except how to get mom to do her homework. It may be easier to do it yourself, but it is more important to have her do it. She will learn skills she will need for her whole life in those few hours it takes you to teach her. Be patient and remember how important these moments really are.

Underestimate them

Sometimes we may feel our kids are not ready for something because of their age or ability, but if you don’t let them try, you will never know. They may surprise you.

If you underestimate their ability to do something, they will never grow. You may think you are doing what’s best for them, but give them more credit; they can do more than you think they can. Give them challenges and things to do that are a bit beyond their level. Failing at something is actually good for them. It builds character, makes them stronger and more resilient. It helps them get ready for the real world and the challenges they will face every day there. It can be hard watching your child fail, but watching them overcome a failure and try again is one of the most satisfying things a parent can witness. They know they have succeeded when their child doesn’t give up, but rather tries again.

Give them everything they want

As parents, we want to provide for our children, we want to give them everything they desire and more, but that is only doing a disservice for them. If they don’t have to work for anything, they will never learn to appreciate things. Make them do chores, make them work for things, and make them wait for things. Teach them patience and help them enjoy anticipating something. They may not really want every candy they see in the store when they realize they have to earn it. They may be more careful about what toys they take out when they know they will have to clean it up. It helps them learn responsibility and how to be successful as adults.

All of these things can be easy to do. We may be thinking we are doing something out of love, but we need to be careful not to confuse doing something because we love them with doing something because it is easy. It can be hard to see how our actions now will affect their future, but we should keep that in mind.

Megan Shauri graduated with a bachelors in Anthropology and a masters in Psychology. She lives in Orange County, CA and is a mother of twins. Contact her at


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