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4 ways to overcome neglectful parenting

Posted October 4

Your child needs you -- more than you know. (Deseret Photo)

There is a part in Roald Dahl's classic, "Matilda," where the young girl's parents leave her home alone. She is only 4 years old. Her parents often neglect her and do not care about her. Instead, they spend their time watching television and playing Bingo. So as they leave, she decides to attend the library, in search of wonderful stories of heroes and heroines to get lost in.

1. Choose to be there

Children need role models. Leaving them to navigate the world on their own without a strong foundation gives them a disadvantage. Be there for them, and guide them for good.

According to Dr. James E. Van Horn, "Most of the child’s basic learning takes place in the many informal situations that occur daily in the life of the family. These informal occasions for learning include all the times the family members are together doing ordinary things, such as getting dressed, ... eating and so forth.”

2. Spend quality time with them

Spending time with your child shows them they matter, and gives them a confidence they cannot gain elsewhere.

Research has shown that spending quality time with your children is beneficial to their social development, and to their future relationships.

3. Be their example

Your children will do what you do. If a parent is using drugs, for example, they cannot expect their child to not try them as well. Be what you want your child to be. If you want them to accomplish goals and better themselves, then let them see you doing the same.

4. Recognize their full potential

In most cases, parents want what is best for their children. And to help them reach their potential, it is essential that a parent has faith in their child. Show them that you believe in them, and support them through any trials they might face. Love them when they win, when they lose, when they succeed and when they fail. Show them you love them no matter what.

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