As the parents of a new born child you are the most important people around. The primary care giver in most traditional Indian families tends to be the mother, while the father gets the bacon home. The system is as old as the dwellers in caves, and gave the children a permanent loving presence in their lives in the form of the mother. This may not be as true these days with more women joining the work force and opting to rejoin once they have had their child. The children are often passed on to nannies and grandparents while the Mom and Dad are only available for a few hours a day to the children. In such circumstances how do the parents nurture a loving relationship with their children? Consider a few ideas that could work here.
Understand the Concept of Quality Time
Since you will be short of time to spend with your children you need to understand what Quality Time is to create opportunities to spend quality time with them. Quality Time is a period of predetermined time in which you give your undivided attention to your child. This means that each of your children gets to spend a certain number of minutes each day with you with nothing else vying for your attention. When you think about spacing it out in a logical and organized manner, this is not a very difficult task to complete. It also gives you a great insight into how your children feel about what all is going on in their lives. Remember it is their time to speak to your about anything that is troubling them. You must understand that if you want to give them advice that should be done in another time slot and not impinge on their “talk time” with you.
The Nine Minute Parenting Guide
A recent study was able to pinpoint the nine minutes in a day that a parent must spend with a child for the child to be aware of the involvement of the parent in his life. The first three minutes are the ones immediately after they wake up. The next three minutes of importance are after they return from school and the last three minutes are the ones just before they get into bed at night to sleep. These crucial nine minutes can make a huge difference in the parent- child bond that you are striving to create. For working mothers who are unable to be at home when the child returns from school, this could cause a problem, but there is an easy solution. Even if you are at work when the child returns from school, you can swap those three minutes with the first three minutes that you return from office. Start today and you will notice a distinct improvement in the communication channel you leave open for your children. After all no matter how busy your day may be, you can always figure out how to spend nine minutes with your children in that day.
Take the Time Out to Touch Them
The healing touch of the mother’s hands has been waxed eloquent in poetry down the years for ages. Now modern science says that these touches actually do provide positive strokes for the self-esteem of your child. Apparently it takes eight touches a day for the child to feel connected to the parent. These touches could be a pat on the back, a simple hug, a kiss on the cheek, a stroke of your fingers in the hair or even merely straightening the collar of the shirt. On a normal day eight such touches are considered enough, but when the family is going through a tough time you need to increase these touches to at least twelve a day for the child to feel that you care. While it is easy for the mother to impart such touches, the fathers usually feel a little more self-conscious about this aspect of parenting, especially as the children grow older. They need to get over their own insecurities and constantly keep in touch with their children to bond better with them. It may seem strange initially but eventually the dads will appreciate the touches just as much as the mothers do.
Children are usually in a Good Mood, Don’t Spoil It
Children are naturally of a happy and cheerful disposition, but parents have a habit of giving them severe reality checks and bringing them down. Understand the fact that your child is growing up fast enough to know that the world is not a perfect place. You do not have to be the harbinger of bad news all the time. Don’t scold them each time they make a mistake, they know when they have made one. Let them study on their own for exams without insisting on extensive revisions the night before the exam. They face enough competition in school, at home they need support and encouragement so keep the criticism out of your words and tone. Appreciate each thing that they do to please you, the handmade card, and the gift they saved pocket money to buy for you, the song they want you to sing for them, these are the moments that you bond with them. Don’t kill the mood just because you had a bad day at work, instead look at the amazing evening waiting for you’re at home in the company of your children.
Feature Writer: Cashmere Lashkari