Welcome to Real Parenting, a space where parents can share the joys, pain, and the mess of parenthood. Want to get something off your chest? Share your parenting journey? Email us at smartparentingsubmissions@gmail with the subject "Real Parenting." Click here to read more 'Real Parenting' stories.
As a mom of two boys now, Meryll Soriano has already defined the kind of parenting style she has. It's one that should foster an encouraging environment for her two kids, Elijah, 14, and Gido who is turning 1.
"I just try my very best na makita nila yung mundo on their own," Meryll said in an exclusive interview with SmartParenting.com.ph.
For Meryll, it's her job as a parent to empower her children and that will not happen in a limiting environment where a parent would always say, 'Bawal yan! Bawal ganito!'
The actress says some would even mistake her encouraging parenting as being "lenient," especially with her eldest, Elijah, Meryll's son with her ex-partner Bernard Palanca.
"With Eli kasi everybody is complaining na I'm very lenient... na hinahayaan ko siya.
"But you know, I truly believe na a child is being empowered in encouraging environment," Meryll shared.
She adds that while she wants Eli to be independent, it's still her job as a parent to set limits. "We've tried to see kung kaya niya yung maging responsible, hindi niya pa kaya. So, we still have limits. We still have boundaries. Importante pa rin siya."
Despite these doubts by other people, Meryll is just happy that her teenage son still considers her as his confidant.
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
"Safe place ako ni Eli. Safe place niya talaga ako, I can attest to that. And also, he will [be] very open about it. Safe place niya ako kasi we talk," Meryll said.
Having this kind of close-knit relationship with her son is important for Meryll, especially now that he's in the teen stage. She knows the value of being open with your parents where a child would not hesitate to discuss even the not-so-good things.
"Yung teenage [years] kasi it's the start of being distant. And I don't want that. So, I'm very conscious with [giving] effort... setting the, kumbaga, 'yung footing namin as a family.
"Everytime na there's a problem, sabi ko sa kanya, he needs to talk to me because ako rin naman ang magsasagip sa kanya so, no lies," Meryll said.
"Mabuti nang alam ko kung ano 'yung pinagdadaanan niya, rather than sa iba ko pa malalaman," she adds.
There is no one-size-fits-all type of parenting. Every parent has their own way of finding the right balance between disciplining and caring for their child. Whatever type of parenting you think suits your situation, what's important is that it is anchored by your love for your children.
Click here for signs that you're overparenting without knowing it.