Parenting is a team effort. There is an old African proverb that says it takes a village to raise a child. While a child is influenced and shaped by the entire society, no two individuals play a more pivotal role in this than the parents. Both mom and dad play important and differing roles in parenting. But, Mother is the first teacher of the child.
Let us not confuse “parenting” with the “responsibilities of a parent.” The “tasks” of raising a child can be divided equally and interchangeably between both parents. But parenting is much beyond these tasks. It involves promoting a child’s well-being by supporting his/her physical, intellectual, emotional, and social development.
A mother has a significant impact on a child’s overall growth and well-being. Following are the six most important roles played by a mother in her child’s life:
The Mother is the first teacher of a child. A child is the greatest blessing of God for the parents. But along with this angel, comes the responsibility of nurturing and growing your child. This is not an easy job and requires a great amount of patience and perseverance.
Children have highly impressionable minds, and they watch and copy just about everything. Raising your happy, positive children is a shared responsibility of both the parents, but as we all know, a child ends up being with the mother more often and most part of the day owing to needs that only a mother can fulfill.
Since a mother spends the maximum time with her baby, therefore the mother is the first teacher of her child, and the kid believes in her and also follows her completely.
No offense to the Dads out there – but mommies are slightly more important to the child’s nurturing than daddies. Mothers have an instinctive ability to be sensitive to their children. Mothers read the signs better – right from the time their baby is born.
And there is a strong emotional connection between a mother and a child that a dad cannot simply emulate. As mothers, you need to keep your eyes open and observe the children for any emotional, physical, or behavioral changes. This way, a mother can recognize any problem early on, without waiting for it to turn into a “situation.”
A baby starts recognizing the mother’s scent and face merely days after birth. From that moment on, the mother’s presence, her touch, her voice is all a secure base for the child. “I want my mommy” is often the first reaction to anything that upsets the child.
This is why it is important for the mother to work on strengthening this trusted bond between herself and her child. Unreasonable anger and impatience, spanking, and public shaming are some of the ways you can lose this trust easily.
As a mother is the first teacher, you have to make your child feel safe and secure – this is often a taken-for-granted role, but is nevertheless important as insecurity can lead to many emotional and psychological problems in your child.
Just as easy as a mother can read her children from their expressions and body language, she can also easily talk to them about what they are going through. Mommies are more verbal than daddies, because, well, women generally talk more than men.
They are also better listeners, and children find it easy to open up to their mommies when they are troubled. Even if there are no problems brewing, mothers are always interested to know more about their children. They ask more questions and are better at getting answers.
As a mother, you need to keep this communication channel open and live until they become adults. As the child grows, they tend to confide more in their friends than their parents. This is why you need to be their friend, have daily interactions, and share a good laugh – not just start talking when there is trouble.
As the mother, as the first teacher, can teach things to her baby, she spends more time with them.
Women and their emotions are often the butts of men’s jokes. But it is her emotional facet that helps her connect deeply with her children. A mother can easily hug a child or cry with him/her in public – something daddies tend to avoid.
Mothers can talk about their feelings with the children, and hence they are better equipped to teach the children how to deal with emotions. A mother is the one who understands the needs and moods of her child. She knows what her child wants, even when the child has not spoken much.
This gives emotional security to the child. This, combined with her role as a nurturer, helps a mother improve her child’s emotional intelligence and sensitivity to others. That’s why the mother is the first teacher for each and every baby in their life.
A mother is the original pre-school! Mommies are more likely to engage their children in various learning activities – from singing a rhyme out loud to solving a puzzle – than the daddies. This is because, as we said earlier, mommies are better at communication.
They are also good at being playful, and more importantly, they are patient with their child’s pace. They are also very good at teaching children soft skills. As a mother, you need to interact with your child as much as you can and help them learn and be organized when they are more independent.
A mother has to maintain a balance between ‘being strict’ and ‘pampering the child.’ She has to inculcate a sense of responsibility in the child. She is the one who makes them learn the first lessons of life.
The mother is the one who makes her child understand what is being said and they learn to follow her instructions smoothly. She gives them toilet training and teaches them how to express their needs. She makes them mentally strong to face the outer world when they first leave home to join the school.
Many of the above roles can be taken up by daddies, too – however, the mother is the first teacher genetically wired to be better at this than the men. So, mommies, you are the most important person in your child’s life, and the mother is the first teacher in their life to improve their skills.
It is your duty to be available for them, listen to them, solve their problems, and make them feel safe. Follow your “mothers’ instincts” because you are their true knight in shining armor!
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