The title of “stage mom” is one that is often given to mothers (and fathers) who parade their children around as cash cows, pushing them into pageants and auditions and classes even though their children may have no interest in them.
Most of us have heard rumors of toddlers getting spray tans and fake teeth, advanced specialized training and glamour headshots so that they can win a prize or a movie role or even a highly coveted spot at the best preschool in town.
While a “stage mom” is an extreme example of a parent who advocates for their child’s success, her motives are not so different from those of most other parents.
It’s probably a safe bet to say that every parent wants their kid to be the best they can be, whether in sports, academics, arts or what have you. But, how can a parent find the right balance between a “stage mom” and a supportive parent?
Read about some of the gentler ways of nurturing your child’s interests and talents without pushing them down a path that doesn’t appeal to them.
- Think you’re raising the next Steve Jobs? Does your toddler love the remote control? The computer keyboard? Does your baby already know how to turn on the speakers? If your child is electronically inclined, fostering their interests by offering mechanical stimulation will encourage them to make their playtime a learning experience. Encourage their logical brain development by giving your child new and interesting science projects, puzzles, and mazes to complete. Make problem-solving a fun game and they will be on the right track to lifelong success.
- Have a mini Meryl Streep on your hands? Does your little one thrive on attention? Do you have a comedian at the dinner table? Having a child with an eccentric and creative personality can be fun but challenging. Giving your high-energy bug a creative outlet to grow their imagination and talents can help them learn to manage their energy and their emotions, making for a happier, well-adjusted tot.
- Think you’re training the next Tim Tebow or David Beckham? Does your babe have a competitive streak? Is your kiddo daring and adventurous? The world of sports can be just as cutthroat as the pageant scene, with just as much heartache and competitiveness so letting your child take the lead will allow them to set their own bar for success whether that means making the varsity team, or just finishing the race. Supporting your child’s athletic accomplishments, big and small, can be a great tool for teaching them humility and perseverance.