As your children get older, while they might be talking more, you may find that there is still a huge gap in the communication between you. Here are some suggestions to help you improve communication between you and your child.
Controlling Voice Volume
Yelling at your child can be the quickest way to have them shut down and not want to communicate with you at all. When a child is being yelled at, they become scared, and their brain goes into flight-or-fight mode. While some children cower when they are being yelled at and can even become insecure and withdrawn, others may have an opposite reaction and become aggressive, even toward you. If you’re having trouble disciplining your child without yelling at them, it might be helpful to take a parenting class to learn some other strategies.
Go With Your Child’s Talking Flow
One thing that many parents of young children struggle with is dealing with a child who doesn’t talk as much as they would like. If your child talks pretty much when they feel like it, in that case, in order to maximize your level of communication with them, meet them halfway. Rather than throw a bunch of questions at them and become frustrated when you’re met with silence, allow your child to sort of lead the communication dance. This can help them to enjoy conversations instead of feeling like they are being interrogated.
Take Their Issues Seriously
Children are no different than adults when it comes to wanting to be heard and taken seriously. When your child expresses concern, such as saying their mouth hurts, don’t be dismissive, and actually consider what they might be going through. A child complaining about a pain in their jaw may have a toothache requiring medical attention. A great way to show your child that you truly hear them is to make eye contact when they are talking to you and allow them to express themselves fully.
Put Yourself in Their Shoes
Remember that your children are just little versions of yourself; therefore, if you want the best relationship with them, you must put yourself in their shoes. Ask yourself how you would feel if someone were to yell at you the way you are yelling at your child.
Consider how you would feel if your concerns were always dismissed as not being valid or are not taken seriously. When you look at your children as people, you will see how much better your relationship with them can become.
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