Raising children can be a tough act. Everyone who has taught, raised or cared for a child in any way is sure to have interesting stories to tell. Some of those stories come from very challenging incidents. Why? Because children will always be children.
The average child prefers to play than to read. The average child will prefer to play games on daddy’s iPad than use it for self-development. The average child wants to have fun even at the expense of their health and personal development.
But we must never forget that they are this way because they are children. They do not know better. If we will teach and train them, we must be their friends. Even adults tend to listen to the correction of their friends better than correction from other sources. How much more our tender, impressionable children?
As a parent, create a rapport of friendship with your child/children. They should look forward to coming home, to spending time with you. When you have to go out without them, they should wish you were taking them along. They should come home from school and be able to tell you their experiences.
You can trigger this in a number of ways:
- find time for them to do fun stuff together e.g. dance, play games, sing, draw, go for a walk
- tell them your own stories, especially stories of yourself while you were their age
- when they tell you their experiences, even shocking ones, do not scream or yell at them
- explain actions and consequences to them
- use gentle but firm repetition to drive home correction, but never be nasty with them
This list isn’t exhaustive, but it will go a long way in helping to develop bonds of friendship with your children. Do not forget that once you lose the communication link with your children, a key part of your relationship with them is lost, and your influence with them drops.