Everyone has seen the parent who is rude to the cashier, belittles other families, and is generally an inconsiderate jerk. Those people suck. They’re also among the most surprised when little Reginald or Beatrice treats them with the same disdain.

Kids are like little sponges, except they make messes rather than help clean them up. Like it or not your kids are absorbing whatever you’re putting out. Rude to people you deem beneath you? Well few people rank lower to teens than their parents so enjoy that self-made ride.

While there are absolutely some exceptions one of the easiest ways to raise a decent, functioning human being is to be one yourself. It sounds like common sense and, yet this practice eludes so many people. While words can be very meaningful they will rarely ever trump actions.

You don’t have to be a saint, but if you’re kind and you try your best to be non-judgmental not only will your kids be more open with you they will be much more likely to display those traits themselves. So take your kid out and do something nice today.

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