Seems easy enough. You “childproof” your house to make sure your crawling baby or toddler can’t get into the cleaning products or electrical outlets. You catch your eight-year-old jumping on the bed and make her stop. You make your 12-year old wear his helmet when he rides his bike, no matter how “dumb” he thinks it makes him look.
But prevention goes beyond just saying “no” or “stop.” There are two parts to prevention: 1) Spotting possible problems; and 2) Knowing how to work through the problem. Let’s look at each one a little closer.
Consider these methods for spotting problems before they turn into full-blown crises:
Because problems are quite different, how you solve them also differs. To solve tough problems, you may need more complex methods. Keep these things in mind when trying to solve a problem:
If you’d like, turn to the section that matches your child’s age to read more about how some parents have included preventing in their daily parenting routine. Or you can read on to learn about the M3 in RPM3.
The M3in RPM3 describes three complex, but central principles of parenting: monitoring, mentoring, and modeling. Many people are confused by these words because they seem similar, but they are really very different. It might be easier to understand these ideas if you think of them this way:
Now let’s look at each one more closely. Monitoring your child seems straightforward, so let’s start there.
All parents should maintain positive relationships with their children. 3One parent, two parents, grandparents, foster parents, weekend parents, stepparents. Regardless of whether or not you live with your child, it’s important that you maintain a positive relationship with him or her. A positive relationship gives your child a stable environment in which to grow, so that you are one of the people your child learns to depend on.