If there's one thing the Pearson family does on This Is Us, it teaches existing and soon-to-be parents how best to raise their kids. Of course, since it's a fictional prime-time drama, you can't take everything from the show without a grain a salt, but there are things parents can learn from the Pearsons on This Is Us that will certainly help them on their parenting journeys.
Maybe you will never quite get to the Jack Pearson level of fatherhood. And it's entirely possible that your golden child isn't as sensitive and caring as 10-year-old Randall. But if you're already a This Is Us, fan, it's hard to ignore what parents in real life can learn from the Pearsons.
10 Listening To Your Kids Is Key
One of the issues both Jack and Rebecca have as their three kids grow up is listening to each of their concerns. At one point, Jack even talks Randall through a panic attack, which at the time, was something people were mostly unfamiliar with.
As a parent, it’s easy to brush off some of your kids’ concerns, especially since kids can be legitimately dramatic. Instead, as the Pearson parents have taught show viewers, it’s important to listen to your kids’ concerns, because they are just as valid as anyone else’s.
9 It's Important To Divide Your Attention Between Your Kids
Another issue that Rebecca faces as the stay-at-home parent on This Is Us is giving all three of her children the right amount and kind of attention they each need.
Kate needs attention as she struggles through self-esteem issues and Randall requires attention as an over-achiever. Kevin often gets lost in the lurch, however, as the less needy Pearson child.
As a parent to multiples, one of the worst things you can do is let your attention to one of your children fall to the wayside. Just because they aren’t as needy, it doesn't mean they don't still need you. This Is Us shows that.
8 Finding The Perfect Work/Home Life Balance Is A Must
On This Is Us, Rebecca eventually resents the life she has made because it makes it unable for her to have a life outside of Jack and their three kids. They eventually have a blowout which includes Rebecca shouting that, because of Jack and the kids, she has no life.
Before allowing it to get to that point, however, it’s important to find the balance that works for you as a parent. That way, you won’t develop a growing seed of resentment inside of you that comes out in an explosion.
7 Be Honest With Your Kids
When Jack and Rebecca decide to take a break and Rebecca asks Jack what they should tell their teenage kids about the temporary separation, he tells her to tell the kids the truth.
It might be hard to come to terms with that in real life, but if kids are spoken to openly and honestly, it can help build more trust between them and you, as a parent. Sometimes, it might depend on the age and maturity of your kids to figure out how honest you should really be. However, whenever it’s possible, being honest with your kids is the best policy.
6 Teach Your Kids To Forgive Without Holding Back
As a parent, it’s easy to get frustrated with your kids because of their avoidable mistakes. But it’s still important to forgive them, and the easiest way to teach them about forgiveness is to practice it yourself.
On This Is Us, Jack and Rebecca’s forgiveness for their kids is easy to come by. It’s their ability to practice forgiveness with their kids that helps them grow into more mature adults who are capable of forgiving. This comes in the form of them forgiving other people, their parents, or even themselves.
5 Getting Recognition As A Parent Isn't Easy To Come By
It’s easy for Jack to gain praise from his kids, especially since he is the working parent who isn’t home all day with three kids. But Rebecca has tons of moments throughout the series where she feels as though none of their three children truly appreciate her.
She is the main point of action when it comes to Randall, Kate, and Kevin’s after school activities, homework, and everything in between. But Rebecca helps teach viewers that, as a parent, getting recognition for these kinds of everyday tasks, is almost impossible to come by.
4 Cherish The Small Moments
One of the most endearing things about This Is Us is the small moments Rebecca and Jack have with their kids, both together and on their own. Like the time Rebecca and Kevin cuddled in bed together, despite Kevin being an otherwise surly tween. Or the time Jack was able to bond with Kate at her Madonna-themed birthday party.
The point is, regardless of how big or small these moments are with your kids, it’s important to cherish them and make more of them. Chances are, your kids will grow up to remember these smaller moments more fondly than you might think.
3 Embrace Unorthodox Holiday Traditions
One of the biggest traditions from the Pearson kids’ childhood is Thanksgiving and Pilgrim Rick. One year when they were supposed to travel to Rebecca’s family’s house for a traditional Turkey Day, they got stranded at a motel. Instead of wallowing in pity over the bombed holiday, Jack turned it into a fun new tradition.
As a parent in real life, it’s never a bad idea to try and embrace when things don't go quite as perfectly as you might want. Kids are more resilient than you might think and This Is Us proves that sometimes, the unexpected traditions are a lot better.
2 Don't Make Everything Your Fault
It’s easy to blame yourself as a parent if your kids turn out less than perfect or have trouble with a particular aspect of their life. But as Jack explained in one This Is Us episode, “We do the best we can. But at the end of the day what happens to them, how they turn out, that’s bigger than us.”
It’s important to remember that as a parent because regardless of how kids turn out, all that matters is that you tried your best as their parents. As long as you do what you feel is best for your kids in the long run, don’t make every wrong choice of theirs your fault.
1 Try Not To Compare Yourself To Your Partner
There’s no contest between Jack and Rebecca as parents. Jack puts himself into his role as a dad more than almost anyone else and while Rebecca tries her best as a mother, it’s clear that Jack left a lasting impression on each of his kids for different reasons. But you can't constantly compare yourself to your partner or look at your lesser abilities as a failure on your part. If you go through life comparing yourself to your child’s other parent, it can drive you up the wall.
Unfortunately, there is no parenting handbook. But This Is Us is all about the lasting relationships between adult children and their parents. And if you can take just a few tips from the series, you can ensure that you become your own level of Jack Pearson.