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  • Writer's pictureGajeraVidyabhavanKatargam

#Stages of Parenting

In research conducted on over 200 parents, It was found that parents have "images" (visual expectations) about how things are supposed to go and the way they and their children are supposed to act. Usually, parents are not. aware they have these expectations or that they judge their behavior and their child‘s behavior by these images. But even when these images are unconscious, we use them to measure our successes or failures as parents. If our behavior or our child's behavior doesn't match the image, then we may see this as a loss and feel angry and depressed. If the image and behavior are the same, then we feel happy and successful.

Image-Making Stage

It occurs during pregnancy. This is the time when parents think and form images about their new baby, what they will be like as parents, how the baby is going to affect their lives, and the changes they will have to make.

Nurturing Stage

Starts at birth and lasts until the baby is 18 months to 2 years -the age when ‘No' is your baby’s most important word. At this stage, parents compare their images of birth, of their child, and of themselves as parents with their actual experience.

Authority Stage

It starts at about the baby‘s second birthday and goes on until the child is 4 or 5. In this stage, parents have to decide how strict or permissive to be, what kind of rules they need and how to set them, and what to do when the rules are broken.

Interpretive Stage

Begins about the time the child enters preschool or school and ends with the start of adolescence --about 11 or 12. In this stage, parents are concerned about how

realistic they have been as parents and how they are helping their child develop positive self-concepts. They may worry about how to answer their child's questions and what kind of values, knowledge, and skills they want their child to have.

Independent Stage

The fifth in this series of progression is very similar to the Authority Stage but covers the child's teenage years. Parents have the game questions about rules, strictness, and permissiveness, but now need different answers. As their child grows to adulthood, parents also need to start forming a different kind of relationship with their child.

Departure Stage

The time when the child leaves home. This is a stage of evaluation and, often, a loss for the parents. Parents judge how well they have done and how their image of their child fits reality. Also, parents have to change their lives to let go of their child, to let their child become another adult.

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