We’ve all met those parents who comes across more as their child’s friend than an actual parent. They’re out there trying to be cool, trying to please their child and overall forgetting what it is a growing child actually needs in life. I know it’s cool to be liked and to be seen as the cool parent amongst the boring ones that bring their children shame, but being your child’s friend comes with a lot of downsides.
Children Need Role Models
Having a parent play both the role of the guide and the best friend can be very confusing for them. One minute you’re headbanging with them to Judas Priest and the next your demanding they go to bed. It’s a sure way to throw your kid out of whack. What they really need in you is a role model. They have plenty of friends at school and don’t need another. You have to be strong for your child.
Friendship Means Equals
When you strip off that parent title and replace it with the friendship one, you are declaring that you and your child are equals and partners in crime. This is exactly how they’ll treat you. In reality you have to be the one who makes the rules, lays down the punishments and gets the last word during an argument.
They Need Molding
Being your child’s friend will stunt their growth and throw off the balance of the entire family dynamic. Teens and kids don’t know what makes the world turn or how food gets on the table. You have to live by example and tell them about these things. Adult life takes logic, common sense, self-control and other things.
Overal you need to assure that they make it to adulthood in one responsible and working piece. You can best do that by being a guide and an actual parent. They don’t need some rock star father who is going to be another cool friend. They have enough of those. Your role is a special one and there is no replacements for this role. You are the only dad they have.