An issue that I have discussed with friends and family many times in the last few years is whether, as parents, we should push our children to do things that we think will be beneficial for them.
Consider this scenario. I have a great plan for my son to learn to ride a bike. I just know that he will love it once he has got the hang of it. I am also really keen to get him out doing some healthy outdoor exercise. My son seems open to the idea, even excited. I go out and spend $300 dollars on a beautiful new bike for Christmas. I research the best way to teach a child to ride a bike. Off we go to the park and find a nice gentle grassy slope. My son gets on the bike while I hold it for him. I push it gently down the slope holding on at first. I let go and he starts rolling down the slope. He falls off and lands in the grass. After that he won’t get back on the bike again. He is adamant that he doesn’t want to learn to ride a bike any more. My plans are stalled and I am feeling really frustrated. How do I deal with this situation? What do I say to my child? (more…)