Q: Why should I let my child fail?

A: Watching your children fail can feel worse than failing yourself.  A parent’s innate response is to protect their children from failure. The irony here is that by protecting your child from failing you are hurting them in the process.

Here is a new way to think about failure. Failure allows children to learn how to cope and deal with the real world. Helping your children through failure will give them the skills they need to survive as they get older. Failure is inevitable at some point. When your children don’t do their homework because they ran out of time, don’t excuse it. Have them go to school and deal with the consequences. This will decrease the chances of them not getting their homework done in the future. If your children don’t believe they got a fair grade, don’t go in and argue for them. Give your children the skills they need to self-advocate. This is another great skill they will need later in life. If your children are having problems with friends, don’t call the friends’ parents; give your children the skills they need to deal with it themselves.

By giving children the skills they need instead of rescuing them and using your skills, you will raise responsible children. Don’t take away your children’s chance to learn. You want them to learn these skills and feel failure while they are safe at home with your support.