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I try so hard, and that kid just doesn’t respond.

They disrespect me. They refuse to cooperate. They ignore me.

This happens sometimes when parents don’t have strong internal boundaries.

They try in all good faith to meet their child halfway, to be considerate and give them what they want, but they often fail to consider their own needs, comfort, and boundaries. 

Overly permissive parents often find themselves in this trap after their well-intended efforts to give their children absolute freedom. The trouble is that children also need to know their parents’ internal boundaries so they have something to lean on and don’t get lost in that limitless space with nothing to hold onto.

You’ll learn how to find and set your boundaries so they are solid and functional rather than rigid and strict

Parents who try not to be too permissive or too authoritarian have a similar experience. They know that strict authoritarian parenting isn’t the right way. They want to respect their children and give them space to be themselves. Sometimes, though, they forget to hold space for themselves as well. Their children sense that and start to take advantage of it. 

And then it can sometimes appear that the strict aunt or grandma gets better results with the kids than their own respectful parents.

Right? Does that sound familiar?

If that has been your experience and your home is feeling a bit out of control, with your children testing to see what you will put up with and ignoring what you want, you’re going to need to start showing some respect for yourself as well.

That is a key part of Unparenting’s approach. Many approaches to respectful parenting put all the focus on the children and neglect the parents. As a result, parents wind up exhausted from respecting their children and not respecting themselves, giving them the impression that nothing works on their children. 

Often it helps to put the respect into balance and bring the parents’ internal boundaries into the relationship with their children – and often the children get on board. 

That is exactly what our course focuses on. In the week on boundaries, you will learn how to find your internal boundaries and then kindly but firmly make them clear to your children. And to do so in a way that your children understand and don’t feel the need to rebel against.     

In the practice sessions, we will take a real-life example of a parent who has no boundaries and is always bending over backwards being tolerant, understanding, backing down, and generally letting their children walk all over them. 

We’ll go over how to hit pause in a situation like that, stop catering to the children, and activate your boundaries. Then your children will be able to feel your firm stance and stop testing to see what you’ll put up with. They’ll gradually come to show you the same respect you’ve been trying to show them.

We will also take a look at another factor that often plays a role in your children not showing you respect: trust.

In the week on trust, we’ll talk about the trust killers parents often use without even realizing it. You’ll need to work on weeding those out of your communication so they don’t end up undermining your authority and relationship with your children.

This week you’ll learn an Unparenting principle that helps renew the trust between you and your children. You’ll also learn how to use it in everyday situations (like meltdowns in the grocery store or getting out the door to school on time) to get the trust flowing between you. Your children will start taking you more and more seriously, listening to what you say, and trusting you enough to act like a team player.

What now?

Look at other topics you’re interested in and keep on exploring the course.