Understand your childʼs actual needs.
Dadi! do you think papa and mama will be back for attending my school's annual day?" asked little Varun.
"I am sure they will. Don't worry," said his grandmother as she hugged the little boy.
"I am getting so many prizes and I want them to watch it," added Varun.
Varun's parents were away at Paris to effect a merger of one of their companies with a French Company. His mother was a social butterfly whose presence enhanced his father's image. His father's lifeline was business, amassing wealth and gaining fame. Both of them had very little time to spend with their only child. After all they were working towards leaving behind a great legacy for their child! They never bothered to find out what their son wanted. Does the child care for the legacy or their wealth? He wants their presence, their attention and appreciation.
This situation is commonly seen in the super rich families while the same scenario is seen in poor households as well, though in a different light. There, the parents leave for work early in the morning, struggle through the day to earn a few farthings, leaving their children to fend for themselves. The only difference is in these households, the older sibling looks after the younger ones and this enables in
developing a strong bond between them.
Do kids at that age care for the expensive things given to them? Can these material benefits ever compensate for the parental affection and love these kids crave for? A new-born baby stops crying the moment she settles in the arms of the mother. The pain of a wounded child is alleviated the moment the parent comforts her with a pat, a hug and a few words of endearment. Parental bonding with their children is an essential and integral part of life.
Even the nonverbal emotional communication between the children and the parents creates a bond between the two.. This relationship between parents and the children forms the basic foundation for their mental, physical, social and emotional health in later years. Children, cherished and loved by the parents, grow up to be healthy, warm hearted adults with the right values and empathy for the fellow beings. Children who are shunned and abused by parents will eventually turn into bitter, grumbling and disgruntled adults.
How do we develop this bond with our children? Every parent needs to analyse and understand this.
Spend time with your children, however demanding your job may be. Have dinner with your children. If you need to feed your baby, do it at his pace which will make him understand that he is important to you. Don't hurry the child so that you can have time to watch your favourite TV shows or attend to your chores. In their growing years help the little ones with their morning chores. Helping them brush their teeth and bathing them when they are infants brings in physical closeness with the parents.
During weekends it’s important to get involved with your children in outdoor activities like cycling, swimming, tennis etc. These activities not only help in creating a feeling of togetherness, but also help to build a healthy relationship with your children. Pariticipating in physical activities helps them to realise their importance and the importance of exercises which help in body building. They begin to look forward to such activities more so when you as a parent are by their side supporting and encouraging them. Such interactions go a long way in providing the necessary learning experience and can be very conducive to developing discipline in your children. It is imperative to Make them understand that you enjoy spending time with them. Appreciate them when they do well, correct them when they make mistakes.
It is essential for them to understand that it is not winning that matters but participating in the game and enjoying it is important. Teach them to be graceful losers . This helps them to face the turbulence of life as adults.
This physical closeness in the initial stages of the children’s lives helps to build a strong bond between them and their parents paving the way for them to grow into fine individuals. Emotional bonding
It is important to make your children understand that you are always there for them and that your love for them is unconditional. You should love them without any expectations. Parental love is not a means to something but an end by itself. A hug, a kiss and a few loving words have infinite worth and nothing in the world can replace this. These small gestures provide a sense of security and the children will come to realise that they can depend on you and can always lean on your shoulders in difficult times.
Just verbally telling them that you love them is not enough; it needs to be translated with your actions. It is important to see things from your children’s perspective too. Be sensitive towards their
EVEN THE NONVERBAL EMOTIONAL COMMUNICATION BETWEEN THE CHILDREN AND THE PARENTS CREATES A BOND BETWEEN THE TWO.. THIS RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PARENTS AND THE CHILDREN FORMS THE BASIC FOUNDATION FOR THEIR MENTAL, PHYSICAL, SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL HEALTH IN LATER YEARS.
needs and demands. This helps to develop the needed trust in the children in the parents. They will begin to understand where you are coming from and realize that whatever decisions you make with relation to them will always be for their good. Exercising patience in dealing with the children in their formative years is of utmost importance. Impatience and constant anger directed towards the children will make them lose their respect of you paving the way for disrespectful retorts when it comes to some exchange of words.
To quote the authors of a book on child development “There is a really important period when a mother or a father should form a secure relationship with their child, and that is during the first two years of life. That period appears to be critical to the child’s social and emotional development,” says Sanghag Kim, a post-doctoral researcher in psychology at the UI who collaborated with UI psychology professor Grazyna Kochanska on the study. “At least one parent should make that investment.”
A warm, secure, and positive bond with at least one parent is enough for most children to feel secure and to provide a solid foundation for a wholesome development.
Researches prove that kids who don't receive enough parental affection as infants and young kids grow to be aggressive, worrisome and feel insecure in their school years. This affects their overall performance. Make sure you are a good listener as well as a speaker while interacting with your children. It is important to make them understand that what they want to share with you is important to you . A good listener makes a good parent and will be a good guide whom the kids can trust with their problems even in their adolescent and adult lives. Therefore it is important to provide a solid foundation so that your children as adolescents and adults share their problems with you and look for solutions from you.
Right from the time your children are babies, even a few months old, its necessary to read to them from picture books. I was amazed when I first saw my 21/ 2- year-old grandson reading a baby book fluently. How can a child who didn't even know the alphabets, perform such a task? Later I realised it was the ocular memory that enabled him to do so. His parents would read to him whenever time permitted and so his vocabulary was remarkable by the age of five.
Bedtime stories are very important. Sometimes my husband and I would tell our grandkids imaginary stories and of course the very next day we would forget the names of some of the characters. When the same story would be repeated with different names we would be cornered. "It is not the same name you mentioned yesterday. Nanu! you forgot the story.” All of us would roar with laughter. That is one of the beautiful moments we adults cherish.
It is important to have constant verbal interaction with the children. Never get tired or irritated while answering their questions. The right kind of curiosity should be encouraged in them. Guide them with their reading of good books. Do quick mental mathematics with them. Children who do maths talk constantly, developing thinking and analytical skills as they grow up.
Last but not least is understanding the children’s interests. Don't thrust your interests in your children in order to realise your unfulfilled dreams. Nothing is lost if a child doesn't excel in the field of mathematics, maybe his interests and inclinations lie in other areas. Encourage your children to pursue their interests, and excellence will automatically follow.
Unconditional love for your children in their growing years will eventually instill unconditional love in your children too towards you in later years as they grow into adults. The bond created in childhood between parents and children reflects as a healthy relationship in their adulthood.
Parenting is an art. Learn it, nourish it and cherish it.
TO QUOTE THE AUTHOR OF A BOOK ON CHILD DEVELOPMENT “THERE IS A REALLY IMPORTANT PERIOD WHEN A MOTHER OR A FATHER SHOULD FORM A SECURE RELATIONSHIP WITH THEIR CHILD, AND THAT IS DURING THE FIRST TWO YEARS OF LIFE. THAT PERIOD APPEARS TO BE CRITICAL TO THE CHILD’S SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL DEVELOPMENT,” SAYS SANGHAG KIM.
There is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved.