Loving By Leading: Why Some Parents Are Hesitant to Lead

NOVEMBER 4, 2019

If leadership in parenting is so important and rewarding, as mentioned in our last blog, why don’t all parents take this approach? In his book, Loving By Leading: A Parent’s Guide to Raising Healthy and Responsible Children, Dr. Trumbull offers a few possibilities:

  1. Paralyzed by uncertainty. Many parents are so unsure about their parenting, they adopt a fol­low-the-child approach by default. In many ways, this seems to be more efficient in the moment.

  2. Desiring to avoid conflict. Every parent wants a happy, peaceful relationship with their child. However, this desire can cause parents to ignore their child’s need for discipline and, instead, resort to compromise and negotiation to get their child to behave. This approach of postponing correction inevitably leads to greater conflict and child exasperation. Conflict avoidance is a short-term solution that leads to a long-term problem.

  3. Seeking to be friends too early. It is natural for parents to desire a harmonious friendship with their child, but a respectful, authoritative parent-child rela­tionship must come first.

  4. Hoping someone else will train their child. In the hurriedness of life, many parents hope that the daycare or school teachers will do the grueling work of child discipline for them, when in fact only parents have the true authority and influence to correct and lead.

  5. Too busy to invest the time needed. Life, today more than ever, is filled with distractions and busyness. Parenting can often get the short end of the stick.

Most parents can identify to some degree with one or more of these reasons. No worry; there is always room for improvement. “Productive parenting requires the inten­tional investment of contemplation and time. Don’t let the demands of life distract you from this important task. Invest now, and enjoy the fruit of your efforts later.” (Trumbull, 2018)



Trumbull, DA. Loving by Leading: A Parent’s Guide to Raising Healthy and Responsible Children. 2018; pp 10-11. ISBN 9781732659810

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