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Personalities in Parenting

by | Sun, Apr 3 2022

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Personalities in Parenting
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Everyone has their own unique personality. Some people are extroverted, some are introverted, and some are a mix of both. But how does that play out when kids come into our lives? Often one of two things happen, they either mirror us, or they become the complete opposite.

This can adversely affect our role as parents.  What’s it like to be an introvert, parenting an extrovert child? The answer to this question will be the catalyst for some important conversations about how you and your spouse raise your children.

Brett Ryan from Focus on the Family recently joined us on Rise & Shine to share some of his own experiences of parenting. He believes it’s important that we don’t put too much pressure on our kids to be just like us.

“If you are a natural extrovert and your child is just quiet, it can be frustrating,” says Brett. “You might actually start thinking that there’s something wrong with them. Even though you know in your heart there’s nothing wrong, you might start treating them that way.”

Brett believes we often think that we need to fix our children, and sadly that’s probably doing them a lot more damage. There is a difference between a child that’s shy and a child that’s introverted. A child who’s shy wants to be around people, but just doesn’t know how to do.

“But a natural introvert prefers to be by themselves,” Brett says. “If that’s not how we’re wired though, it can be quite emotionally and physically draining. Trying to be someone you’re not and put on a false exterior is very difficult.”

It’s important for parents to acknowledge themselves, and where they fit into the scale of what their personality is. But it’s equally important not to push your child to be something that they’re not. God has uniquely wired each one of us.

“It’s about building up a child the way they are hardwired,” says Brett, “the way that God has designed them. We have to parent them that way. We’ve seen evidence in the sporting field where parents have driven their children to great success. But that can also do a lot of damage.”

Children can be robbed of their childhood because they were driven by their parents. Some live vicariously through their kid’s successes. We see far too many fathers or mothers on the sidelines of sporting fields all over Australia with that that killer instinct to win at all costs.

“We have to encourage our children and ensure they are loved and acknowledged for their uniqueness,” says Brett. “They are fearfully and wonderfully made and God hasn’t made a mistake with them. You need to be a student of your children and your spouse to understand what makes them tick.”

Brett believes if we do that, we will be able to harness those things and build them into opportunities to flourish. “The relationship will continue to be strengthened and your child will soar in life because mum and dad just love them for who they are.”

Listen to the full interview here:


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