Having kids can be one of many joys of life. It’s your chance to raise little humans that will hopefully grow into upstanding citizens one day. However, to get to that point, you’ve often got to put in a significant amount of work. While every child is different and some are more difficult to raise than others, their fundamental needs are usually the same. One of these needs is to feel deeply connected to you as parents or to feel as though they’re accepted and loved. Here are some tips on bonding with your kids worth trying.
Learning how to listen to your kids actively could go a long way. When kids complain about their parents, it’s not uncommon for them to feel as though they’re not listened to. Below are a few tips for active listening that could help you bond.
- Avoid Being Judgmental: Sometimes it takes a lot of effort for your kids to open up and tell you how they feel. In light of this, avoid being judgmental and instead, try and take a neutral stance. When you do this, you build trust and make it easier for them to talk to you moving forward.
- Offer Feedback: When your child is talking, offer verbal and nonverbal feedback as a way of showing them that you’re actively listening. It could mean smiling, mirroring their body language, asking questions, or summarizing what they say.
Learn About Them
You may feel that because you’re a parent and are raising your kids, you know all there is to know about them. However, this likely isn’t the case. See your child as another person you are curious to learn about and show an interest in who they are. You can do so by asking questions and offering to participate in activities that they usually do alone.
Learning about them also means knowing what they’re battling with whether low self-esteem or insecurities. For example, when your child is a teenager, you should also be sure they don’t have any addictions they’re fighting, especially if you’ve noticed signs. A drug and alcohol rehab may be a good solution if you find they’re struggling in this respect.
Have Uncomfortable Conversations
Parents sometimes shy away from having uncomfortable conversations with their kids. However, these can be some of the most essential conversations to have, so get good at talking openly about different topics. When talking to them about tough topics, you can have a series of conversations that are age appropriate. You can also admit that it’s awkward and you don’t know all of the answers
Spend Quality Time Together
In order to bond with anyone, it’s crucial that you spend quality time together. When you spend time with your kids, it’s a way of reaffirming your relationship. Allocate time every month that is dedicated to your kids. You could decide to create a family ritual such as having a home movie date every Sunday or exploring your city together instead. During your quality time, make sure everyone feels both comfortable and free.