Parenting Tips and Tricks: Getting Your Child to Open Up
Admit it, you’ve lied to your parents before – in one way or another. Now you are looking for a way to break the chain, to let your child know that you are not here to fight, but to understand. It is not easy to communicate effectively with a young child, teenager or adolescent.
What can you do about it? Why is it difficult for a child to tell his parents everything? Well, ask yourself this question. Why you couldn’t tell your parents about your frustrations at school, partying until 3am and the list goes on.
Is it because you believe they wouldn’t understand your situation? Or maybe there is no foundation of trust and openness? Well, you will learn more in just a few minutes.
Importance of communication
Communication is the ability to send and receive information. Humans cannot live without communication because it is a way for a person to feel part of a group. In this case, the most important group is the family unit. Why?
Family is the first group a child encounters. A unit that informs the individual about right and wrong ways of behaving while identifying his wants and needs. You can also say that a family is comparable to a football team where the parents are the coach and the children are the players.
“Mom, I have to go to the basketball event on Friday,” Samantha said as she clenched her hands and swallowed nervously.
In the scenario, you can identify two types of communication – verbal and non-verbal.
Verbal focus on what you are saying. Samantha told her mother about an event on Friday night and this is what she wants her mother to know.
Non-verbal is the action you are showing. When Samantha sought her mother’s approval, she showed nervousness through her gestures. What does this mean? You could interpret it as her being nervous because her mother might not approve or she has something to hide.
Which do you think is the best and most effective of these two? Studies show that non-verbal communication can show the true side of an individual. Verbal can be manipulated, but non-verbal is like a hint of what a person really feels.
How to communicate effectively?
Effective communication should not be tense, it is better to be free, without rules and restrictions. There are 5 steps to effective communication with your children.
- Make it a habit
Like norms, it’s important to teach your child the behaviors you want them to have when they’re old enough. Before you take action, think about whether it will be good in the long run.
Making it a habit to sit and talk with your child is great practice for effective communication. How can you create this simple activity? You and your family can have dinner while talking about your day. Or maybe, go on weekly evening walks with your child.
- Be interested
One of the reasons children don’t tell is because they think it will bore you. Show interest by putting down your phone and looking at them with exciting curious eyes.
A perfect example is when as soon as they get home you can ask how their day was. Or maybe if they tell you something, be sure to pay attention and remember it.
- Stop being ashamed
Comparing your child to other children is not the best choice. Not only are you making your child feel like they are not “good enough” for you, but this always creates a boundary for the child to open up to.
Instead of saying “Kate can fold and make her bed all the time, why can’t you?”. you have to say “Amanda, once you’re an adult, you’re going to have to make your own bed. What better way to practice than now!”
- Avoid threats
Are you the type of parent who says, “You better not go out drinking and partying just because the curfew is 12 o’clock at night! If I find out, you will be punished.” Well, it’s normal to warn your child, but that’s not the best way to do it.
An alternative is to let your child be aware of the dangers of going out unsupervised with children their own age.
- Help and guide
Being a parent does not mean that your sole responsibility is to pay for your child’s education and needs. You should also look for ways to guide your child on the right path.
Studies have found that it is human nature to build a wall when a person feels threatened. This is especially the concern when scolding your child.
What you can do is suggest ways to solve a problem. In this way, your child will not only feel that his parents are concerned, but also ready to offer a helping hand. Even in small things like homework or chores.
The nature of children
The child expresses with words and shows with actions, but is often conflicted. They cover up what they really want to say. Why? Parents tend to assume the worst for their children. “No! It’s too dangerous. What if—”this is why children choose to be careful about what they say to their parents.
So why do children hide their feelings and thoughts instead of telling their parents? If you’ve been through this yourself, wondered why you did the same to your parents, then you should know the answer!
The child can:
Fear that you will not be able to understand.
Children may think that after telling you about their worries and feelings, what they will get is a loud laugh or a scolding from you. This is a sign to avoid embarrassment.
Believe you know how it feels.
Some children realize that you may have been through the same dilemma. Once they tell you, you may know too much about how you feel, and all they want to avoid is making you worry.
I want to do it myself.
There are children who want to be independent, they think they don’t need help from an adult. Also, to prove that they are capable of choosing a decision “like an adult”.
There are four types of children:
It goes with the flow
A child who does not make a decision when the problem is not present. It’s the same as studying for an hour before an exam.
Competition is what motivates the child, he likes the feeling of arguing or winning. These kids choose to join competitions or just score high in a test.
A slow learner
Those who cannot follow the developmental stages of the individual. It may take time for them to adjust, but once they do, it will be easier for them. Never pressure children to learn something they are not yet capable of.
A child can be a mixture of everything. Sometimes a child may be good at math but hate science.
How to create a strong relationship
Building a strong relationship doesn’t happen overnight. Most parents resort to domineering parenting, which makes children uncomfortable. A strong bond exists when both parent and child take care to understand/acknowledge each other’s feelings.
Five principles for a strong parent-child relationship:
“It’s okay, you can start all over again. But this time I’ll help you learn the subject so you don’t fail the next test!” Andy’s mother exclaimed.
Accept this fact, your child is unique and comparing him to another is not applicable. Every child is capable of learning, it matters how fast or slow he is. Some parents say to their children, “When I was your age, I could do…” stop making those remarks.
“Something is bothering you. Do you want to talk about it?’
Spending time with your child is crucial. Having a strong relationship means being able to be with your child. Even if you work all day, take a few minutes of your time. A strong relationship won’t thrive if you don’t talk to each other.
Doubting your child means you won’t give him much freedom. If you believe you are doing the right thing, think again. Trust is vital in any type of relationship, without it you will be restless and paranoid.
Your child knows when you doubt him. What they will do is reassure you, not tell you everything.
“Fear will get you nowhere, it’s better to try and fail than not try at all.”
A parent needs to be there at times when their child doesn’t believe in themselves. Play the role of cheerleader, keep motivating and reflect on the positives of failure.
A baby needs its mother’s warmth to survive. Every child needs reassurance from their parents, a simple pat or hug is enough to make your child feel safe.
Studies have found that those children who had more physical contact with their parents were more likely to have high self-esteem and pride than those who did not.
#Parenting #Tips #Tricks #Child #Open