Building bridges: Creating a connection with your child

Building bridges: Creating a connection with your child

As a teenager, my child struggled to keep their cupboard clean. No amount of lecturing from me on the importance of keeping their almirah organized helped.

Raising self-reliant children becomes difficult when parents punish, nag, lecture, scold or shame them. On the other hand, overprotection and shielding children from all disappointment are also ineffective strategies to inculcate self-discipline in them.

Effective parenting involves struggling with our own feelings and building connections with our children.

So how do we teach these essential life skills to our children?

To guide our children in positive ways, the first and most essential step is to build our bridges or connections with them. Children learn when they feel a sense of belonging and significance.

There are many ways in which we can create our connections with our children.

Listening attentively is the beginning of creating a connection. Can you recall a time when someone listened to you carefully? How did it make you feel?

Paraphrasing, being non-judgmental, and attentive body language conveys good listening skills. It is helpful to keep your phone and other gadgets aside and to listen to your child with complete attention. If you are busy with your chores and find it difficult to listen right away, share it with your child and decide on a mutually suitable time. How you convey this to the child is important. It is a good idea to use ‘I’ statements like, “I can see that you want to talk to me about something. I am busy with this document right now and have a deadline of two hours to submit it. Is it okay if we talk after dinner?” Of course, we need to remember that if there is something urgent that the child needs to share, it should be heard on priority.

Validate and address the child’s feelings. Children often feel overwhelmed with emotions. A simple thing like dropping an ice cream may upset a child. As adults, we sometimes forget that the child’s world is different and begin offering solutions. Remember that we feel connected to people when we feel understood.

Another effective way to build a connection with your child is by giving them opportunities to cooperate and feel capable. Finding solutions with children, whether it is related to creating routine charts or resolving mealtime issues, helps to develop their individual abilities. Unconditional love and encouragement from parents make a child feel safe and valued and aid in building bridges with the child.

In this blog, I have shared some ways in which we can create connections with our children. Do share with us some ways that help you in strengthening the bond with your child.

Image Source: Freepik

Positive Discipline (2008) by Jane Nelsen, Ed.D.
Teaching Parenting the Positive Discipline Way (2017) by Lynn Lott, M.A., M.F.T and Jane Nelsen, Ed.D., M.F.T.


12 thoughts on “Building bridges: Creating a connection with your child

  1. Very informative post. Children require our time & patience. Building bridges with children can solve a lot of day to day problems faced by both parents & children.

  2. Yes, it is very true and you need to make your child feel that they are your no. 1 priority amongst all your priorities.
    For a working mother, it is important to let your child know that you are just a phone call away and you will attend to their call always .. even if it is to tell them that you are busy and you would like to talk after some time.
    Children feel heard and in a safe place!

  3. You are right. The communication channels need to be kept open at all times. One can’t expect children to come up and present their problems as a business agenda. It has to slip in naturally while talking. Also, I would say that feelings of belonging and significance don’t just help in learning; they are also needed to make us feel good about ourselves, to feel secure and important, to be productive.

  4. Very useful and practical ways to connect with children.I am forwarding this to many parents of young ,growing children.

  5. Good evening Ma’am, very informative write up . I have started attentively listening to my child’s concern and most of the times , I just give a patient listening and he finds the solution himself. We have to value our children and then a strong bond will be there. Looking forward to your next blog.

  6. Thank you maam for sharing the useful tips.I try attentively listening and empathetically responding with my children. This helped me in keeping the bond with them.

  7. Very true…building bridge is the first step towards right communication…
    I have experienced this as parent as well as teacher

  8. Very Informative Article! It’s very true we as parents sometime not able to give quality time to our kids. infact, I really learnt a lot from this article and try to implement it. Thanks a lot for sharing parenting tips👍

  9. Thank you ma’am for sharing different ways to create a connection between parents & children. What I often use as one of the ways is to go for a walk with my children and share our thoughts. Yes, It’s very important to create a good connection and open communication between parent & children as it helps in building trust and understanding.

  10. It’s a very informative article. Thank you so much for sharing the ways to enhance essential life skills to our children. We eat together as a family as it’s often lead to great conversation and create bond with the child. We put our phones or other devices away and simply enjoy each other’s company.

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