Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Talking about feelings

A good tip that I heard and wanted to pass on to any parents dealing with kids who are having emotional tantrums!

It's basically to remember that you can empathize and even sympathize, without "giving in" and letting your child "get his own way."

Often small children over-react to things such as "you must finish your dinner before you can have your pudding," or "please share the toy with your sister/brother," etc - and a lot of it can simply be pent-up emotions that the child needs to let out.

So if a child is sobbing and over-upset, you can try to deflect both your and his attention away from the incident at hand by getting down onto his level, and expressing your understanding of his emotions. "You seem to be feeling very upset / angry," ... you can stay close and show with your body language and your voice that you love your child, without necessarily giving in to what he is demanding.

Try to remember that it is healthy - and essential for normal psychological development - for your child to express the full range of emotions - including anger and sadness as well as happiness. And your role is to be supportive, loving, and gently guide your child into appropriate ways to express ALL his emotions!

Happy parenting,


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