Good morning! Grab your cup of coffee or tea and your breakfast and let’s discuss a topic that is very dear to me – How do you open up communication with Your Children? It can be done! Communication; yes, communication is one major area that I see most parents struggle with, especially with their older children.
I often hear parents express despair that their children just do not listen. For example, their children would not tell them where they are going or when they are coming home, or who they are going out with… Mums can’t even comment about the dresses their daughters wear (i.e. if they do not like them) without facing a confrontation… Parents don’t seem to have much say in their children’s choice of friends or their performance in school. To make things worse, competing with social media means parents are totally at a loss.
So why is opening up a channel of COMMUNICATION with your children is so important?
What do we mean by ‘Communication’? I have been talking with my children all day long…? Does that count as Communication?
Let’s imagine a scenario where you are having a leisurely chat with your child or children at your dining table, or when you wake up in the morning you are being greeted by your children with smiles on their faces? Or you are the “go to” person your children will seek advice from when they have any issues. Or your children will ring you if they are going to be late for dinner or lunch?
Would you like to look back 20 years from now with fond memories of your family having dinner together, enjoying each other’s company during dinner time, chatting about each other’s day, or discussing today’s society? Have memories of cheering for your favourite basketball teams or netballteams together; sharing memories of birthday parties and planning family vacations together? Discussing your favourite movies, actors, etc… and the list goes on and on…
Isn’t it every parent’s dream to be able to look back with such fond memories? So I am sharing a tip with you today, whenever you have the chance, open up communication with your children. Ask them about their day and their experiences, be it happy or sad. Just allow the conversation to flow and listen, and do vice versa.
Listening without judgement is important!
Communication runs both ways. Tell them about your day as well. Build up the trust with your children. When your children start opening up to you, try not to judge them or talk down to them; instead respect their decisions and offer your opinion (as a parent and friend), if you feel the need. Then, explain your reason for the different opinion. If you yell, talk down to them or disrespect their opinion, the conversation will then always be one way. You can read more about this in my eBook – 5 Simple Steps to Harmony at Home.
Treasure the moment you have with your children. They will not remember much about the cleanliness of their rooms or whether they’ve practiced their musical instruments, but they will remember the conversations and their experiences of the connections that you shared.
Hey, I am running a survey via GoParents Facebook Page. I would love to know "when is the best time and place to have a conversation with your children? As for me, it would be in the car, where they have no where else to go except to talk. What about you?" Participate in this survey through GoParents Facebook Page…love to hear your thoughts!