The parenting methods of a mother and a father share a lot of similarities as well as differences. Each set of parents is unique and differ in personalities and beliefs. However, their common goal seems to be the same concerning their children. Both my mother and father held the best intentions for me in their parenting methods even if they express most of them in very different ways. For example, my mother was very nurturing, but my father was strict, disciplinary and focused on providing the means. My mother was quick to protect me from the world and my father’s goal was to prepare me for life beyond my mother’s wing. My father joked a lot and liked to play games or tease me about things, but my mother was serious and more uptight about things. Although my parents are very different in some of their parenting methods, they share some common principles as well. They both are believers in moral and academic responsibility, respect, and hard work. When their personalities lined up on these matters, they behaved as if they shared one common personality.
My mother was always there to tuck me in at nights and care for me when I was ill, but my father was always working and providing. I remember every single night that I went to bed my mom was there to say goodnight, but I don’t recall my dad’s presence unless I needed discipline for my behavior. When I became ill, my mother never left my side; she would care for me in this manner until I was completely well again. However, my father would always work overtime or some odd job to ensure the money was there for anything that I might need or that my mother might need in caring for me. Each did what they did for me out of love and devotion. However, my father did his part from afar, and mom was always the “hands on” kind of mother.
My mother wanted to protect me from the world and real life situations for as long as she could, but my father wanted me to learn to survive and thrive in the world around me. Mom felt it would bring me a happier childhood to protect me from the dangers of the real world outside our home. She believed that without her protection that I would grow burned out on life in general and look at things as destiny rather than a possibility. She faced these issues too early in her life and longed for her child to have a sense of safety and security that she had lost so early in her life. Yet my father felt strongly that I should learn how to live in the real world while still having at least some protection from it so that I would be able to make a stand in it alone. Both had their own beliefs about the subject, but both also had the same good intention for my future and desired my life to be happy and successful.
My father always made light of some things that were quite upsetting to my mother. Like the fact that I liked to play sports and climb trees instead of playing with dolls or dress up. My mother was quite a tomboy, as well, but she had hoped that I would be less like her and more like the little girl she wished she had been. It was not easy for her to transgress into role of mother and wife after playing the role of “just one of the guys” for so long. She often felt like she was a completely different person pretending to be as she thought she should. Whereas my dad didn’t worry, much about the fact that I enjoyed sports and boy like things. He would often tease me about how that a girl could not do some things as well as a boy, just so that I would set out to prove him wrong. He felt that I would surely find a common ground, a sense of myself as everyone dose in his or her own journey through life. He did not worry about the experimental stages of my childhood as much as my mother did. They both felt their own way for the same reason, out of love for me, and a desire to help me find a better way to finding my own self.
However, my parents both agreed upon matters of respectfulness and morals. They taught me to respect a person even if that person was my enemy. My parents strongly agreed that everyone was someone and no matter what the situation, respect and consideration for the each person involved was very important. Likewise, they were adamant about morals concerning family, religion and work. When they came together on these principals, the outcome was always the same: they stood their ground and things were completed exactly as they told me, or strong discipline would come until I complied. If I tried to stay home from church, or slack in performing my chores or completing my schoolwork the consequences were severe. They accepted when I made mistakes and often gave credit to a heartfelt try. Although, not trying was very unacceptable to both of them and just plain laziness was not something they looked at as tolerable.
Whatever the difference between my mother and father may be, they sure have some very powerful similarities as well. Both are unique and differ in their own personality and beliefs, but both also hold a common ground on the deeper issue of having the best intentions for in mind for me. Together they sought to prepare me for my transgression into adulthood and the security of standing on my own in a world that could be overwhelming and disillusioning to someone. The similarities at the core of my mother and father are more alike than different. Their love and concern for my life, my future, my happiness and my over all well being was the reason behind their methods even if they were so different on the surface. Parents may express the same things differently; however, the reasoning behind the method is usually the exact same one. This just proves to me that its cover cannot judge a book and a closer look at what is wrote on the pages may reveal something completely different from the illusion on the outside cover.