How to make your home emotionally safe for your child: Expert shares tips

Published on Nov 16, 2022 05:05 PM IST

From apologising to our children when we are wrong, to being open to different perspectives shared by them, here a few ways by which we can make a home emotionally safe for them.

Parenting tips: Here's how to develop empathy in kids (cottonbro)
Parenting tips: Here's how to develop empathy in kids (cottonbro)
ByTapatrisha Das

When we start parenting, we try to provide our children with the best of everything. Be it physically, mentally or emotionally, we always hope for them to be healthy through all of it. Besides providing them with a childhood that they can cherish as they grow up, we should take care of making a home for them that is emotionally safe. Emotional safety brings with it the perks of shaping a life where the children are in control of their feelings, emotions. Most importantly, the home should be their safe haven, and the place they cherish fondly. Addressing this, Family and Marriage Therapist Emily H Sanders wrote, “On things that create emotional safety for our children (turns out they’re great for adults too). In short, kids need to see that you- the caregiver- can handle manage your own feelings and manage theirs. Sounds easy. Feels hard. Parenting exposes parts of us that still need healing.”

ALSO READ: How to help kids cope with grief and loss; Expert offers tips

Emily further added that through the process of parenting, we may often feel that we are not good enough parents for our children - “If you feel like you’re falling short as a parent, remind yourself that this is hard for all of us. You’re doing your best. Let those feelings push you to make corrections and come closer to your child, not pull away from them in shame.”

Apologising: Apologies need not always be from the child’s side. When we make mistakes as parents, we should be the ones apologising.

Feedback: As parents, we should always be open to speaking to children about how they feel about their bringing up. We should be open to listening and implementing the feedback shared by them.

Hard conversations: As kids grow up, it may get necessary to have age-appropriate hard conversations with them. We should not shy away.

Co-regulation: As children undergo feelings and emotions that are big for them to handle, we must be there to regulate it with them, and be by their side.

Boundaries: Sensible household boundaries and limits should be set for children and us, and we must teach them the importance of respecting them.

Opinions: Our children are allowed to have opinions that are different from ours. We should be open to their perspectives.

Healthy outlets: In case of venting out emotions that are difficult for us to handle, we should not lean on our children for support. Instead, we should find out healthy outlets.

Happiness and fun: Most of all, we should learn to be silly with our kids and have fun. Create memories.

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