Engaging in Conversations with Your Child About Their Friends
Children enjoy talking to, playing with, and spending time with their friends. However, regardless of how much time they spend away from home, children are still in need of the love and support from their parents. This is why establishing a good family relationship is essential in the growth and development of a child. Children need a safe, stable home to live the ups and downs of life, especially through the times of making and losing friends. The way a parent loves his or her child ultimately helps that child establish and manage additional relationships and friendships.
Engaging in frequent conversations with your child is very important. However, when friendships are concerned, conversations become even more important and necessary. Many parents learn to take on the responsibility of listener. This task requires that you, in turn, respond in a sensitive, respectful, and calm demeanor. This allows the child to talk freely and openly about everything that is going on in their life. This also creates a safe zone for the child to feel comfortable, while learning more about themselves, their feelings, and how to handle their feelings more appropriately. Remember, it is important to encourage your child to talk about everything he or she is feeling and make them feel that no matter those feelings are important. Listen to your child’s tone, as well as the words that he or she says. This will allow you to fully understand what he or she is saying.
It is important for you as the parent to really get to know your child, his or her friends, and their friend’s family. This helps you gain insight of the important people in your child’s life, what kind of influences his or her friends has on your child, who to call for playdates and birthday parties, etc. If you are not sure who your child’s friends are, then it may be wise to become more involved in school and hold various responsibilities, such as homeroom parent, volunteer for lunch and/or recess duty, etc. This will allow you to see who your child plays/interacts with on a daily basis and how your child acts outside of home. Focus on your child’s body language.
Communicating with your child will establish a good relationship with him or her. Communication is very necessary and vital. Working together to solve problems will allow your child to see that you truly care about him or her and their wellbeing. Engaging in conversations about school and friends can ultimately help your child lead to a more healthy, balanced, and fruitful lifestyle. Always be sure to keep in my mind your child’s age – to truly be able to understand what he or she can understand and how long he or she can pay attention in the conversation. Set aside time for talking and listening to each other. Ultimately, communicating affectively with your child will improve your bond, encourage two way conversations, respect of parent and child, and create a mutual respect.