Proverbs 22:6: “Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” (NIV)
Children are very different, even if living in the same household. Some are compliant, some are more challenging, and some are nice enough to meet their parents halfway in between. Those are definitely stereotypes as each child is his own individual person, but generally, that would be a good description.
Having said that, different parenting styles do greatly influence our children and their behaviors. If we choose to be uninvolved parents, our children’s behaviors will reflect that, most likely in a negative way. If we choose to be too controlling, again, their choices will generally demonstrate more negativity by acting out against the rigidity and too much pressure.
While choosing the best parenting style and staying consistent is important, I have found that each child needs specific lessons, each taught a little differently. The same lessons will not apply to all children. A more challenging child might need more lessons on learning how to obey in order to be an effective leader, while a more passive child might need more practice in the art of compromise or standing up for herself. The happy-go-lucky child might need more practice in discovering his own likes and dislikes instead of being easily influenced by those around him.
It is the parent’s job to discover the uniqueness of their own children and then adjust their life lessons accordingly. However, instead of seeing that as a negative, learn to embrace your children’s different personalities, remembering that each lesson they are needing to learn now might in turn become the gift they use in the future to fulfill their specific purpose in life. Who knows, maybe as you are helping to develop specific traits in them, it might teach you something about yourself as well.