If you are the type of person who is interested in psychology and reads a lot about it, it will blow your mind how parenting is fundamental in shaping personalities and identities. Taking this into consideration, Mariam Medhat speaks about “The Parenting Formula” that is aimed at creating conscious parents.
It all started when Mariam gave birth to her first child, Adam, who is now 10 years old. By the time Adam had turned one, things got challenging in terms of parenting that she needed to seek help through counselors and courses. Unfortunately, such courses did not meet Mariam’s expectations. “There was no real knowledge, depth, nor real psychological background,” Mariam says.
Mariam then sought psychological therapy for the first time, during which she got the chance to know more about herself. This allowed her to better understand herself and how she deals with her son. “The more the therapist and I worked together, the more I realized that most of Adam’s behavior was a reaction to what I actually did in my parenting,” Mariam explains. Mariam’s experience with therapy taught her that parenting has a great impact in shaping the child’s personality. “The more I worked on myself, the more I witnessed a change in his behavior,” she says proving that changing her parenting style simultaneously changed her son’s attitude.
After finishing her MBA, Mariam had to figure out what her real passion is and what she wants to do for the rest of her life. She came to the conclusion that she had always been doing her best to satisfy society’s expectations for a girl to get a degree, find a normal job and get married. She needed to know what she really wanted to do for the rest of her life. Mariam realized that parenting played a role in the confusion she has been experiencing. “My parents were really sweet parents and they would want nothing but the best for me. However, I was raised to find value in achievement. So, it hit me that all my problems or my choices have been affected by parent’s parenting,” Mariam clarifies. Because she didn’t want others to go through the same dilemma she has been in, for she knew that parenting is the key, Mariam founded “The Parenting Formula” and took on parent coaching as a profession six years ago. The parenting formula relies on three main pillars: individuals, corporates & NGOs and schools. The aim behind the initiative is to raise awareness of parenting styles and how each parent should deal with their children. This is done through training, workshops, campaigns, and one-on-one sessions. When it comes to step-parents, Mariam mentioned that she receives clients who seek advice on how to deal with step-children. “I find there
is more of a need for coaching in the case of step-parents, because there will be a lack of awareness of the child’s characteristics and personality traits, so coaching is definitely needed for the blend to occur between both parties,” says Mariam. Moreover, she explained the different scenarios of step-parenting according to the age groups of the children. If a step-parent is to be introduced to a teenage child, minimal interference in their personal lives is always advised. Unlike the case of a three-year-old kid who needs certain treatment to be taught discipline and so on.
“I would advise step-parents to take things slow and give themselves a chance to get to know the children better and create a good bond with them in a friendly way,” says Mariam. When asked about the percentage of male to female participants in coaching, Mariam replied that in the first two years of the launch they never had a male participant. However, in the last two years, about 20% of the attendees were men. The ratio is different when it comes to corporates, she estimates it is usually a 50-50 percentage between male and female attendees. “At first though, men looked as if they were forced into coming, as they believed that there was no benefit out of it,” Mariam elaborates. That is why it always takes her some time to break the ice with them and get their attention, and it usually ends up with good interaction with them after they learn the value they are getting from these sessions. The parents of this generation are proving their commitment to raising children of sound mind, body, and soul. The existence of organizations such as “THe Parenting Formula” and their growing popularity among young parents is the perfect indication of how much love and attention will be invested in these children’s lives. If that is not reassuring, we don’t know what is.
Here’s hoping that this coming generation gets the full benefit of their parents’ good intentions and willingness to learn.