Every kid is different.
I know that as parents we try to remind ourselves that all kids are different and none of them will be exactly the same. But sometimes we can’t help the feelings we have of comparing our children’s triumphs and hurdles.
My boys are only 15 months apart. My oldest just turned two years old. Thinking back on his first years of life, I have documented his milestones. Some of which have been incredibly above average. He was eating solids and crawling at 4 months, walking at 8 months, speaking at only a year old. As a mother, I’ve been astonished and incredibly proud of his achievements.
But I need to understand… my first son is rare. Not every baby will be like him. Not every child will progress past those milestones like he did.
I am struggling with this. With my first son, being a first time mother, his progress instilled this standard on me of what I should expect for my second child.
I mean, the both came from me, right? They should be the same, right? WRONG. Every child is different.
Before I had my second child, I told myself that I was going to treat them equally. I strived to create the same learning environment for them both. After a while, I realized that certain things that worked for my older son, did not work for my youngest. I became concerned. Equality started becoming… well, not so equal.
It was not the same. It became really hard for me to come to terms with the fact that my children would have to be raised differently, because well, they are different. There are still certain ideals and values that I plan to teach them both, but they will just need to be handled differently.
While my first son was full speed ahead at everything he did, I noticed that my youngest takes his time. He analyzes, he focused on his hands, and takes time to absorb. These are incredibly different characteristics that I’m not used to. But just because he is learning in a way that is different from my oldest, that doesn’t mean that he isn’t learning. That’s all that is important to me. I’m seeing progression and milestones in him that I never bothered to pay attention to with my oldest. My youngest is doing things that my oldest never did.
As the saying goes, you can’t judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree.
As cliché as it sounds. My first son may have been a monkey, he climbed that tree faster than any other monkey I know. But my youngest is a fish, and as much as he takes his sweet time exploring the oceans, I am still very much proud of the little man he has become.
As parents, we need to learn and accept that we will have to adopt multiple different parenting techniques for each of our children. Because it’s not all one size fits all. And as much as I love both of my children equally, because they are different, I will not treat them equally.
Every child is different
What do you think? Leave me a comment and let me know what parenting technique you strive for?