As a parent, you’ll inevitably come to a point in your life wherein your child might not always want to spend time with you. This is especially true for pre-teens, and teens, who are at a point in their lives where they want to be independent, and they want to figure things out for themselves.
Sometimes, this need for independence causes a rift between the parent and the child’s relationship, especially if the parent feels that their child doesn’t want to be with them, or spend some quality time with them. Eventually, the parent just gives up, and their relationship doesn’t go back to the way it used to be.
That’s why if you want to maintain a great and lasting relationship with your kids, you need to focus on giving your them some much needed attention.
Bad behavior sometimes means they need your attention
As their first and primary caregiver, your children look to you for everything. Most of the lessons that they learned about life, they learned from you. Most of their habits, mannerisms, and beliefs are in a way a result of how you taught them through your actions.
And for them, being given their parent’s attention is important since it makes them feel validated, and it makes them feel that their parents appreciate them.
But as your child grows older, it’s inevitable that you sometimes grow apart, mostly during their teenage years. This is a crucial point in their lives, since they’re at an awkward point in their lives where they’re not children, but not quite adults. And it can be very confusing and frustrating for them to deal with what they’re feeling.
As a result, teens sometimes lash out, and rebel against their parents. And some parents, tend to just get angry at their kids instead of understanding that rebelling is actually their child’s way of seeking their attention. Going against their parents’ wishes is an attention seeking behavior, and parents need to address it in a positive way, instead of making their child feel that they’re unwanted. They want their parents to spend some time with them, and help them out during that point in their lives.
This is also true when it comes to younger children who are prone to misbehaving. Most of the time, children misbehave not because they’re ‘bad’ or naughty. They misbehave because they’re seeking their parents’ attention. Their parents might be too busy at work, and too tired when they come home, and as a result, they barely have enough time for their kids. Which causes the kids to lash out since they want to spend time with their parents.
What should parents do?
It can be hard for parents to juggle their work, and spending time with their kids, but it’s necessary to have work-life balance if you want to have a good relationship with your children. It’s not always enough to buy them gifts, or spend time with them only during the weekends, they also need you to be there during the important moments in their life, and your kids need to know that even if you’re not with them, you’re always thinking of them.
If you’re at work, you can try calling your kids just to check up on how they’re doing. You can give them a call after work and tell them that you’re on your way home. Small things like that really help make your children feel that they’re important in your life, and you’re not just someone who gives them food and buys them toys. You want them to feel that you’re taking care of them, not just buying their love.
It’s also important to spend as much time as possible with your child. Sometimes, you might need to sacrifice some aspects of your work, in order to make time for your kids. Your kids should always be more important than your work. It’s easier to fix the problems you have at work rather than fix a broken relationship with your child, so even if you have to skip working overtime, and earning extra money, you should always put your family first.
Lastly, talk to your kids. Listen to what they have to say, and try to understand things from their perspective. Children need to feel that their parents understand them, and that their parents support them. Make your child feel loved, and they will return the favor.
Sources: healthyplace.com, raisingchildren.net.au, urbanchildinstitute.org
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