Building a Positive, Trusting and Transparent Relationship with Your Child – Part 2
Welcome back dedicated mummies and daddies! Kudos to you for making it through this long week. Parenting is a labour of love, dedication and most importantly, highly rewarding.
A couple of months ago we started on this series on how to build a positive, trusting and transparent relationship with your child. (Don’t miss out and check out Part One here if you haven’t seen it)!
And now, we’re back with Part Two with more tips and signs to look out for when communicating with your child to ensure a healthy and happy relationship.
While being present in your children’s childhood is essential, communication is another key factor in building trust. Just like any other relationship, there is a need for transparency and open communication where both parties are able to voice their feelings in a safe and healthy environment.
When we talk and respond to our children in an open, non-judgemental and encouraging manner, it begets a child who is able and willing to be vulnerable around us in sharing how they feel.
For a start:
Talk about day-to-day things on a daily basis.
Start with the basics! If your child knows they can approach you in the little things, they will be comfortable talking to you about bigger and trickier issues too.
Listen attentively – not just to their verbal message, but pay attention to their body language too.
Sometimes we may miss out on important cues especially in younger children when they are still unable to express themselves fully in words.
Details matter. Do take note if:
- Your child is being too quiet lately
- They seem to be avoiding certain people/objects/places
- They are throwing tantrums more than usual
All these are important clues that should not be overlooked. Mummies and daddies, watch out for cues if something is amiss and investigate further should the need arise.
Emphasise the importance of honesty.
Being honest is not just about doing the right thing, being honest also applies to what we say and how we say it.
As parents, try to appreciate our children’s honesty whenever they admit their mistakes. Help them see that being honest is a commendable behaviour and they should not be afraid of it. Under many circumstances, children may learn that telling a lie might occasionally get them off the hook. This will then lead to an unhealthy cycle of fib-telling to avoid the consequence of ‘getting into hot soup’.
Thematic English Module 12: Honesty – Learning to communicate in an open and safe environment
It is our duty to set the boundaries and communicate our expectations at an early age. Remind them gently but firmly that it is important to own up to their mistakes, and as their parents, we still love them and will forgive them.
All in all, this is a part of open communication that is vital in building trust and confidence in the child. If the parent is dismissive, critical and closed, it will result in the child carrying this feeling of uncertainty, insecurity and fear into their teenage years and adulthood.
Remember, the last thing we want as parents is for our children to hide and withhold important information from us. So start early, and start cultivating these habits to improve communication with your child to ensure a positive and trusting relationship.
With this, stay tuned to our last and final part of this series in our upcoming Part 3!
By Serene T.
10 Habits to Strengthen a Parent-Child Relationship. (2018). Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/peaceful-parents-happy-kids/201706/10-habits-strengthen-parent-child-relationship
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