Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Just The Way They Are

By Dr James Dobson

Sometimes, even the best of parents have a hard time accepting their children just the way they are.

Parents of a child who is extremely shy, for example, will often ask me how they can pull him out of his shell. At home he may make profound statements, he may share observations about life, he may even tell the funniest jokes. But in public his tongue becomes wedged to his cheek and his head drops as if glued to his chest. Why is he so introverted around strangers? It could be because he’s been hurt or rejected in the past. But it’s more likely he was born that way. No amount of goading or pushing by his parents will make him outgoing or confident. His shyness is a function of his innate temperament.

My advice to parents of such a child is simply this: Give up trying to make him something he cannot be. Go with the flow, accepting him just the way he is made. Then look for those special qualities that give that boy or girl individuality and potential. Nurture him. Cultivate him. And then give him time to come into his own, as a unique personality like no other human being on earth. You, as a parent, will be less frustrated by this acceptance, and I guarantee you, so will junior.

From TODAY, Voices - Monday, 18-March-2010
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