Wit and wisdom: Key words to parenting

Insight into raising children using wit and wisdom.

Michigan State University Extension has many resources on parenting information and learning tips and ideas to share in raising children today. However, there are also many good books to read on parenting. We have to be mindful that not all topics are easy to discuss. Some circumstances such grief, sickness, adoption, divorce and blended families can be particularly challenging.

Parenting these days takes a lot of wit and wisdom. According to author Barbara Coloroso in her book “Parenting with Wit and Wisdom in Times of Chaos and Loss,” she offers practical advice for parents of children, from toddlers to teenagers. The day-to-day routine of everyday living can be interrupted by a not-so-good thing and how we learn to deal with it might not be that easy.

Referencing Coloroso’s book, she covers difficult topics and shares answers in an insightful way. In her first book, “Kids are Worth It!,” she states the tools of good parenting are:

  • Treating kids with respect.
  • Giving them a sense of positive power in their own lives.
  • Giving them opportunities to make decisions.
  • Taking responsibility for their actions.
  • Learning from their successes and mistakes.

These are the same tools youth can use in rough times also. Kids just need more of the above. There will always be some form of the challenges youth will encounter. We just need to be more understanding. We can offer support and empathy to give youth hope and to move on.

Coloroso states in her book, “Kids need some of our time every day in the good times, but need even more in the rough times.” She goes on to say, “Our children need a smile, a hug and humor every day.”

Throughout “Parenting With Wit and Wisdom in Times of Chaos and Loss,” Coloroso has thought-provoking statements from a variety of individuals such as Kahill Gibran, many authors of other parenting books and Abigail Van Buren, syndicated columnist.

Coloroso states, “We cannot always control what happens to us, but we can control how we respond to it and how we use it."

For more information on parenting, visit the MSU Extension Early Childhood Development page.

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