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How You Can Show Your Children Love
More on Love and Children
For more on children see:
- Parenting: Ten Truths Adults Should Learn About Children
The hardest job in the world is being a parent, or maybe it's being a child. Both these roles are difficult, but as parents and adults, we need to understand children so we can be the best parents possible....
- Important Life Lessons I have Learned From Children
We are always trying to teach children -- teach them the rules, teach them how to behave, teach them skills. I have worked as a teacher for many years, and I also have two of my own children, so I have spent a...
Love is a vague word and means different things to different people.For our children love is critical, so how do we show our children we love them?
Love is taking time to listen.
Even if you've heard your child repeat the story ten times, you need to listen. Why? By listening to your child you show that you respect and value them. Active listening shows a child you truly care about them. By listening you learn who your child is and better understand what their needs are. The more you know about your child, the easier parenting will be.
Love is patient.
Sometimes kids make the same mistakes over and over. They forget to do their chores, they forget to use their manners, they miss the bus. Remember kids are learning, and sometimes they need to make mistakes a few times before they understand and learn. As adults we must remember to review, encourage, and give them an opportunity to learn. We must be patient and remember others have been patient with us.
Love is showing kindness.
Showing kindness is espeicially difficult if your child is misbehaving. Taking time to think before you react is important. Speaking to your child in a gentle way and avoiding screaming shows kindness. Kindness happens when you keep your voice calm and you respond in a firm, but gentle fashion.
Kindness also happens when you make your child feel special and recognize what an important person s/he is. All of us apppreciate when someone is kind to us. Be kind to your children.
Love is knowing when to say "No."
Sometimes children need to be told "no" for their own safety and welfare. As an adult you recognize possible dangers or consequences resulting from bad decisions. It is an act of love to intervene and prevent your child from acting impulsively. Young children don't have the wisdom to predict outcomes of bad decisions, so they need responsible parents to guide them-- sometimes that means saying "No."
Love is recognizing you were young once.
As adults we often forget we were young once, and we forget what it feels like to be a child. For children now is what is most important and tomorrow is a long ways away. Children do not always understand the consequences of their actions, and they often feel a sense of intensity or urgency about what they want.
Empathize with your child, and remember how important the immediate situation is to them. Children live in the moment, and sometimes that can be a good thing!
Love is setting limits.
By setting limits we teach our children how to fit into society successfully. In a functional society, we all have rules to follow. With no rules or structure, children do not develop in a socially acceptable manner. They fail to learn respect and empathy for others. They do their own thing with little consideration for others. They become self-absorbed and don't consider how their actions affect others.
When we set limits for children, we are guiding them and showing them we care about their future. We are taking time to teach them how to fit in with society and how to get along with others. By setting reasonable limits we are showing our children that we love them.
Learn how to set limits:
Love is being there.
We all become busy-- too busy to notice, to talk, to listen, to engage in a productive way with our children. To your child NOW is the time that is important, and we should learn to live in the moment and be there to actively engage with our children. Children are only children for a few years, then they grow up and leave us. Apppreciate and take advantage of the time you have them . When they feel the need to share with you, they are giving you a piece of themselves-- Take notice.
Love is nurturing.
So often we want our children to be like us, but it's important to recognize them as individuals and allow them to explore their own interests and develop their own talents. Encouragement is vital for children so they develop a strong self-esteem. Nurturing happens when we are committed not only to meeting the physical needs of our children, but also encouraging them in their endeavors, even if we are not particularly interested in those activities or pasttimes.
Love is acceptance.
Remember to celebrate who your child is because somethings simply cannot be changed. A girl is a girl, and a boy is a boy. There are characteristics that simply cannot be changed. Recognize a child is a unique individual and each has special gifts to share with us. As parents, we must accept who a child is and recognize their strengths as well as their limitations. Sometimes limitations end up really being gifts in the future.
Love is letting go.
As children grow, they must explore the world on their own so they can learn to make mistakes. If a parents continually holds a child's hand and the child is never allowed to fall, the child is not allowed to experience failure. When a child experiences failure, they learn what not to do. By letting your child go, you allow them to fail and learn from their mistakes. This is how a child matures. Allowing your child to fail every once in a while is an act of love.
As children grow older and approach adulthood, it is natural to let them go-- this is the next stage, a natural progression. If you truly love your child, there comes a time when you must let them go. And they do come back and will be in your life always because you have taught them to love you.