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Should parents set Rules early on or play it by ear?

We all struggle with this part in our parenting skills? Rules. How many to set, what to set and if to set? Do we play it by ear or do we have some set in place so that things are always clear?
When do we start and when do they finish? Do we follow our parents or do we go at it on our own?

Now that my daughter is almost twenty I am very glad we always had some sort of rules. It really has paid off ten fold!!! While visiting with a friend of a friend a few weeks ago I quietly observed her kids and household and this old post came to mind.
This is a post I shared over a year ago...

illustration by casandracampbell.com

  • Should be tested, broken and amended accordingly.
  •  Nothing should be followed blindly or set in stone.
Parents, let’s make things easier on ourselves. Learn to amend the rules when needed and learn to change the rules as your children grow older.
These were some of my house rules:
  • homework is always first, then playtime.
  • must have breakfast every morning
  • bedtime was 8 pm, after 6th grade it increased by an hour.
  • sleepovers were only allowed if I knew the parent and had visited their home at some point, even if to drop off for a play date. this was amended as my daughter became a teen.
  • no last minute request to stay over at friends house or to go visit a friends house, period. always required ample time to gather all information.
  • no friends in the room with door closed. This rule was amended after 6th grade.
Do you really think same rules apply across the board at all ages and for all things?

Learn to be flexible, allow your children the right to question your rules and express their feelings on them. Learn that nothing is set in stone and each child is different.

Are there rules with no exceptions? What are some of your rules?

Today my daughter still lives at home while being a full time college student and holding down a job. The rules have been adjusted through out the years but we still have rules non the less.
It is still my house, our home and it must be respected.
  • I must know location of where she will be
  • I must have at least one other number to call in case of emergency
  • she must use a cab if coming home past midnight
  • phone must charged at all times
  • advance notice if guests coming over, same for sleep overs
  • no getting in car with someone who has been drinking
  • you are not a minor so I can't save your butt if you get into certain types of trouble
  • must save a portion of her salary
  • must contribute to at least one house bill
  • your room is in my house, keep it neat, clean and yes I respect your privacy but I still have the right if I feel necessary to go in and take a look (I never have felt the need, till this day).
These are some of our current rules. What are some of your rules for your at home college kids?
Share your thoughts.

Always stress free xo.

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