Do you remember the time you erupted at your young kids? Do you remember the horrified looks on their faces at something you should not have said to them? We do sometimes lose it in front of our kids, without meaning to and as much as we want to take back the hot-lava words into our mouths, we can’t. We end up leaving our kids hurt, angry or confused in such situations. Read on for some common verbal errors parents make and how to face these situations in gentler ways.
“Leave Me Alone!”
Every parent needs the occasional break unless they are a saint or martyr. The thing is, if a child hears, ‘Leave me alone’ or ‘Don’t bother me’ or ‘I’m busy’ too often, they internalize that message and think there is no point in talking to you because they are always being brushed off. As they grow older, you will notice that they tell you less things because you are always busy. Having said that, it is important for children to see their parents take time off regularly. This way, your child knows you are having some alone time and knows not to disturb you.
Labels are simply shortcuts that shortchange children. Children hear and believe what we say without question so the next time you are talking to your sister or your friend about your child, be careful with the words you use. Negative labels have never helped children. In fact, they end up believing that they are shy or mean and it eats away their confidence. The best way to deal with such situations is to address the specific behaviour itself while leaving out the unnecessary adjectives about personality. Telling your child that her friend is hurt because of what she said and she should try to make her feel better will be more productive than asking a five-year-old why she is so mean to her friend.