Talking To Your ChildJanuary 4, 2017
Keeping your child physically safe is a full-time job in itself. You must watch out for predators, cars, bikes, bullies, and so many other dangers that leave your mind in constant worry. But, keeping your child from all of these things is just the beginning. As a parent, one of the most important duties that you have is to keep your child mentally and emotionally sound and safe.
When you keep your children emotionally safe and sound they’ll be able to lead a productive life and you’ll enjoy a close relationship with them for a long time to come. Children should feel easy being themselves and comfortable talking to you about various things that are happening in their lives, even if it is things that they know you won’t agree with or may perceive differently than they do in their world.
Start the Conversation
Don’t be afraid to ask your child how their day was. In fact, why not make it the first words you say after ‘hello’ after their day at school or your long day at work? It is nice to be able to sit down and talk to your child. It keeps you informed in their life and what is going on and allows you to build a lasting, trusting bond with your child. It is very important that every child have this.
Sometimes it takes you to get the conversation going to spark the interest of your child, particularly during the pre-teen and teenage years. Sometimes children at this age have so much peer pressure and other emotions going on inside they’re not really aware of the love their parents have and ‘take it out’ on them. That is exactly why you should take the first step so that you’re not shut out!
When your children feel comfortable enough to open up and talk to, it can make a world of difference in their overall well-being. You should always try to understand your child’s point of view, no matter what your original thoughts are concerning that particular subject. Be willing to listen and try to relate to what they are saying. Things that your child feels or expresses to you are probably not the same sort of things that you were dealing with as a youngster.
Times have greatly changed in just a few short years. Be open and willing to at least hear your child out. Valuing your child’s thoughts and opinions enables them to blossom into a caring, considerate adult. Your children need you for guidance, but as they age, inserting their own opinions is important. When there are important decisions involving the child, allow them to be a part of the process.
When you allow them to give their input, even if your decision is one they’d rather you not make, it allows the child to grow both developmentally and emotionally. Is Something Wrong? Don’t expect your child to open up and tell you when something is bothering them because so often this doesn’t happen and you will be waiting around forever for them to talk. It is up to you to recognize the changes that may occur in your child when something isn’t right with them. While the signs vary in every child, it is usually pretty simple for a parent to determine that something is wrong.
Some of the signs that your child is emotionally bothered by something to include:
- Sudden change in their behavior
- Your child may show disinterest in activities that he once enjoyed
- Your child may change the group of friends that he has
- Your child doesn’t want to go to school or becomes nervous or anxious
Anger and irritability are also signs that there is some sort of problem in your child’s life. Oftentimes children are unable to direct their emotions to the person actually causing them.
Family members are close and trusted; they resort to these feelings unto those they trust. Your child seems withdrawn; isn’t eating dinner or seems sad Kids have so much going on in their lives and they oftentimes are unsure of how they should deal with the emotions. Being there to recognize the signs that something is wrong can help your child work out any issues that they are facing.
Leaving your child to their own vices is never a good idea as they lack the maturity to make the best decisions for themselves. Ensure that your child has an active life that keeps them busy. Enroll him in sports, music, or dance. Plan activity-packed weekend adventures for the family. Your child needs to visit the doctor at least once per year as well. Ensuring regular doctor visits may help prevent emotional problems from becoming out of hand.
Should there be a more serious problem with your child, the doctor can help you address the problem and find a solution. Encouraging your child to be self-sufficient is important. Raising a confident child starts at a young age, but it does start with the things that you teach. Dr. Sears recommends that parents take several steps in an effort to raise a confident child, each suggesting that the way a parent feels about themselves helps nurture the child’s confidence and self-esteem.