They say children are like sponges; they soak up everything around them. And for the most part they learn by imitation in the earlier years.
Even in their later years, their parents act as a role model for them to emulate so what parents don’t do is as important at what they do. What you do is OK for kids to do, so remember:
No Fighting, Arguing and Cursing: It is important that parents present a united front before their children. It is of course conceivable that one parent will often have a divergent view from the other, but it is best to sort those out in private and then speak in one voice to the child. Conflicting instructions and mixed signals will only end up confusing the child.
Also set an example by not fighting and arguing before the children; it can make them aggressive, withdrawn and anxious. They find it reassuring that their parents are in accord with one another.
If you want that your child should not curse and swear, don’t do it yourself. If a cuss word does escape sometimes, make sure that you explain that it was a mistake that adults sometimes make but it is never OK for children to use profanity.
No Getting Intimate: It is a good idea to display affection before the children. Hugs and kisses between the husband and wife show the child that is normal and healthy for parents to be affectionate towards one another.
It is comforting and reassuring to a child that their parents love and value one another. It also sets an example for children to emulate in their own relationships later in life.
However it is not OK to get intimate before the children; this is always inappropriate. Some experts label this a form of sexual abuse which a child should never be subjected to.
No Watching Nudity or Violence: If you must watch nudity and violence on TV do so after the children are asleep; it is irresponsible to let them watch what you do.
Or you can always watch a film at the multiplex without the kids. Monitor what they watch on TV, if there are inappropriate commercials, explain that these are not real and not to be imitated.
No Drinking and Smoking: It is a simple case of leading by example. If you drink excessively or smoke, you tell your children that it is OK to do so. If not now, they will follow your example later in life.
No Lying: Don’t lie to others, it tells kids that making up convenient fibs is OK and they may use the same ploy on you as well. Don’t speak badly about others; your child may just go and repeat this to the other person!
No littering: Again, lead by example. Be a responsible citizen so that your child has a good example to emulate and learn from.