How important are you as a Role Model for your child?

Sometimes you can forget how important you are as a positive Role Model for your child, and just take this vital part of the Father child dynamic for granted. Your child will observe and copy everything you do, all the time, even if you are not aware he is doing it. Boys particularly will observe very closely what you as their father are doing.

As the joint most important Role Model in your child’s life, you have a huge responsibility to lead by example, however difficult it appears to be at times. The way you behave will be considered as normal and acceptable behaviour by your child. If you are considerate and calm, your child will be. If you are aggressive and loud, you child will also be like that. The question is always, ‘what constitutes a good Role Model for your child’?

Remember at all times, ‘your children are what you make them’. Whatever you are doing or saying you must always keep this in mind. Your child will reflect how you are towards them and others on a day to day basis. The following tips on being a good Role Model are fairly obvious, and certainly not meant as a lecture, but only as an ‘aide memoire’ and is also certainly not an exhaustive list. The goal is simply to help you improve the quality of your child’s life going forward as they pass through childhood.

Work hard at what you do (paid or unpaid)

Be nice to people, even if they irritate you

Be polite and kind to everyone you come across in life

Be tolerant of other people’s differences with you

Always help others if you are able to

Never be aggressive, nasty or react violently

Be a good citizen and respect the laws of the country

Be a good listener and give your time to people you meet

If you haven’t got anything nice to say about someone, then don’t say it at all

They all seem fairly obvious, but in the heat of the moment, we often forget. Your children look to you as their beacon and you must truly lead by example.

 

Do you realise how observant your Toddler is?

Little children are like little sponges, and soak up everything that is happening around them, whether it is what you do, which they will copy, or what you say, which will eventually be repeated. This can be the most embarrassing as it will come out when you are least expecting it. I learnt this through experience, which eventually cost us a friendship.

I had offered to make a video at a friends wedding and give it to them after they returned from their honeymoon. As you do, before they got back, I was checking the video and doing a little editing to make it as perfect as my amateur talent could do. While I was reviewing the film, I had forgotten that my 3 year old son was sitting quietly in the Corner of the room playing in his play pen.

As I was looking through it, there was one particular shot which caught our friend at the wrong angle, and caused me to make an ‘off the cuff’ remark to my wife “I didn’t realise that Annabelle had such a big nose”. The comment was then forgotten about, particularly as that wasn’t the case in reality.

The next day she came round to our house and we welcomed her in. No sooner had she got into the lounge and my Toddler shouted out, “Daddy says you have a big nose!” At that moment, I wished I wasn’t a father, and that the ground would open up and swallow me whole. I was so embarrassed, and tried to say that my son was saying something like ‘be noise’, or an invented word ‘benose’, but he wouldn’t have any of it. He repeated and kept saying very loudly “no Daddy, you said big nose”.

Our friend was hugely offended, although she tried to laugh it off, but that day was the start of the end of our friendship. I have never made the same mistake again, so be warned.