This Mom was tired of getting 1-word answers from her kid until she tried these…!
On most occasions we get to hear one-word answers from our kids, such as, when asked how their day was, all they say is “Good” whereas minutes later they would be discussing the day’s events with their peers over the phone! Such responses are not only upsetting but hurtful too, especially since they are the same kids who would talk nonstop during dinner, movies travel and play. We wonder what happened that they changed so drastically, become so cold, so self-centred. Well, the truth is that they haven’t, it’s a common phase of adolescence.
Until now your children looked up to you for comfort, security and strength but as they grow older they begin establishing their own opinions, forming own thought process and forming own identity. They may not confide in you as much as earlier and may even feel awkward telling you everything. This is where communication tactics are necessary. Here are a few tips which should help you strengthen your parent-child bond while keeping everyone happy.
Ask the right questions:
- Ask open ended questions such as, “Which chapter was the most interesting today?” or “Which part of the day did you enjoy studying the most?”
- Ask Questions of their interest such as, “Which is the latest Avengers Movie?” or “Which teams are playing the next match?” or “Which is the latest album/ series/ show?”
- Talk about yourself, your day or anything interesting experience. Recount your mistake if any and laugh about it. Involve them in your talk before you expect them to share their views about it.
It’s not that kids do not wish to share what’s happening in their lives but they shy away from telling you. Mostly due to fear of being judged. They fear that their thoughts would not be acceptable to you so they try and test you by dropping hints or by sharing stories of others. They check your responses before they share their own story. Thus, parents need to be calm in such situations and hear all that the child has to say. There is no need of screaming, shouting or lecturing your child. Ask rational questions, ask for their opinion about the matter and end the topic on a happy note. This encourages them to talk freely with you and opens the window for future conversations.
Most teens have their own ideas about the ‘Right Time to Talk’ and it could be when you are in the middle of making dinner, watching television or doing laundry. Try not to avoid the conversation then because kids prefer not being the centre of attention and talk freely when they are not your only focus. Let them speak their heart out even if it is troublesome for you. Once they finish speaking, you can share your views on the topic and steer them from the bad to the good side of it, very gently and rationally, without hurting them or by blaming them.
Once the topic is over, begin fresh and do not let anybody’s thoughts linger over the matter. You shall soon notice the difference in your kid’s behaviour towards you and you will be happy to hear them recounting their days, sharing stories of their peers, making you laugh with shared jokes and even asking you for advice when they need one.
- Sheetal Bidaye
- May 29, 2017
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