Here is an imaginary family, though it may seem to be very familiar. Lisa and Dave are both working professional, they have 2 kids aged 6 and 9, a boy and a girl. Lisa comes home before Dave, picks up the kids from after school program, drops off the 6 year old to ballet once a week and the 9 year old to baseball / soccer practice. She gets home, lets the dog out, checks the mail, gets ready for dinner, starts the cooking process, runs out again with one of the kids to pick up the other one . They eat dinner before Dave gets back usually, and then its any remaining homework, TV that kids might watch and then is bed time. Dave gets in by the time the kids are ready for bed, he may or may not be able to read to them, depending upon his work. Lisa and Dave have dinner and sit in front of the TV watching the news. They both are tired by then and its bed time for them . Its the same the next day.
This story is very familiar. Parents often feel that there is no time to listen to the kids as there are a lot of competing things in life calling for their attention. And yet its very important to talk and listen to the kids.
Here are some suggestions on how to talk and how to listen to your kids:
1. Set aside time to talk to the kids about their day.Invite the kids to talk
2. Keep distractions to a minimum.
3. Learn to be an active listener
4. .Dont try to fix anything, sometimes kids want only to vent.
5. Help the kids Problem solve, if they cant do it themselves
6. Be specific with your praise, criticise the behavior not the child.
7. Talk about feelings, dont ignore negative feelings.
If you would like to get more information please call the office at 201-952--9905 or 845-369-7627.
How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish (Dec 17, 2012)
How to Talk So Teens Will Listen and Listen So Teens Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish (Sep 14, 2010)
Raising An Emotionally Intelligent Child by John Gottman PhD and Daniel Goleman (Sep 20, 2011)