Are We Parenting Kids to Become Children or Adults?

by David Schumann
(Indianapolis)

In a recent article in the Indianapolis Star, youth minister and sociologist Jim Hancock says parents should think about more than just raising children, they should think about raising them into adults.


This is nothing new. It's common sense.

In her award-winning parenting book, Keepers of the Children: Native American Wisdom and Parenting, author Laura Ramirez advises the same. She teaches parents the importance of raising children with a vision (a Native concept) of who they will become. She's talking about qualities here, not career path. For instance, she is not referring to the kind of parent who molds her child to become a professional athlete. Instead, she's talking about cultivating certain qualities, like integrity, self-discipline, respect for others, a cooperative spirit and a strong sense of self.

At the core of her book is the idea that it's the parents privilege to raise children to become progressively aware of who they are and what their strengths are as they're growing up, so their lives become an expression of those strengths.

Ms. Ramirez also has a chapter on creating a family code—a set of values from which everyone in the family agrees to operate. Additionally, she describes the process of human development from birth to death, so that parents understand that their ultimate goal is to raise a child into a mature adult.

The author's book is available from her web site Family Matters Parenting Magazine and Amazon. Her publisher has recently made the book available for the Kindle.

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