ACCEPTING CHILDREN’S FEELINGS IS A BETTER APPROACH TO PARENTING.
An unhappy youngster finds it easier to communicate with a grown-up who accepts his or her feelings, rather than one who interrogates him or her, and presses for explanations. Accepting children’s feelings is a true path to constructive parenting. A child discovers help in statements like “I see something is making you sad,” not in expressions in the mould of “what happened?” or “why do you feel that way.”
In a situation where a child is in distress, all that she wants you to do is acknowledge her feelings, not agree with them. Agreeing absolutely with a child, by the agency of a statement like “you’re absolutely right,” often prevents the child from thinking through to a solution to her problem, on her own. A distressed adult also feels a measure of relief when someone recognises and acknowledges what he or she is feeling. Agreement or disagreement is not effective here. acknowledging and accepting children’s feelings is a real soothing measure.
Being specific in communicating your understanding of your child’s feeling is quite constructive and helpful. If you’re off the mark, your child will easily set you aright appreciatively.
Children often feel better when you get them to represent and express their feelings by drawing it. They could move from drawing angry feelings to etching happy feelings in a very short space of time. Your non-judgemental presence, demeanour and posture inform them that you understand and accept their angry feelings. Thus, accepting children’s feelings is a better approach to parenting.
All our children’s feelings may be permitted but their wrong behaviours should be discouraged. As we accept our children’s feelings, we encourage them to resist less and accept the boundaries we set for them. Thus, we secure to our advantage their cooperation and dispense with compliance that loses steam over the long-run.