You’re here to understand how to emotionally connect with your child. As they grow up, you’re wanting to teach them how to express their emotions. Maybe even how to manage their emotions. When we are emotionally connected with our children, our relationship and bond with them grows tighter each day.
Developing a close, personal relationship with your child is important. It reinforces that they can continue to trust and respect you as they grow up. When we treat our children poorly, the emotional relationship can become skewed. Focusing on building a relationship on positivity, understanding, and respect goes a long way.
You can connect with your child in a variety of ways! From sharing your own experiences to directly helping your child process their emotions. You can find an activity that the two of you can enjoy together on a regular basis. Model a positive, healthy relationship with your child. Show them that they are deserving of love and care, and nothing less than that.
Child therapy in Simi Valley, Ca, focuses on your child, but also includes the parents in the process as much as possible!
How to Emotionally Connect with your Child: Share your feelings and emotions
A great way to emotionally connect is to share your own feelings and emotions! It’s great to normalize talking about these different, maybe even difficult, emotions. It’s important that your child feels safe in opening up to you. Talking about feelings can be seen as negative, maybe even discouraged. When we discourage our children from feeling or talking about difficult feelings, it negatively impacts them.
When we normalize these discussions, it allows for open mindedness and greater understanding. It also makes it a lot easier for kiddos to be able to express their feelings. Children may have tantrums and be upset by the difficult emotions they are experiencing. However, by giving them the tools to communicate, it will make diffusing tantrums much easier.
Share your feelings and emotions with them when they come up. Are you feeling excited about something? Maybe you can share that you’re excited about your plans for the day. It could be that something left you feeling sad or upset. Possibly, you might even be feeling angry about something.
You can share this with your child by directly saying, “I’m feeling upset today, because the dog treaded mud all over the carpet. It hurt my feelings, but I know it’s not the dog’s fault. And I can easily clean it up and do better to ensure he is clean before coming in next time”. Teach your child how to communicate their feelings, as well as accept them, and learn how to manage them.
Another example would be sharing that sometimes you get sad. “When I feel sad, I like to clean the house, play with you, or take a nap. What feels good to do when you feel sad?”. Encourage them to think about coping mechanisms for when difficult emotions come up. Help them designate a coping strategy, such as talking about it with you, drawing, or having a positive “time out”. As in being alone and having space to breathe and think.
Child therapy in Simi Valley, Ca, helps your child learn how to communicate their feelings and needs in a healthy way.
How to Emotionally Connect with your Child: Talk about your childhood experiences
A great way to emotionally connect with your child is to talk about what your childhood was like. You are always viewed as the parent, the caretaker. But what about when you were a child yourself? This can be a great conversation for you and your child to have.
You can discuss what activities you enjoyed growing up as a child. These days, entertainment is vastly different from when you were growing up! Children nowadays have iPads, tablets, and video games, for example. For you, it’s possible that you had wooden toys, or newly developed electronics like race cars or instruments.
Maybe you also enjoyed playing in the park or going on nature walks with your family as a child. Answer any questions your child might have, such as your family at the time. Did you engage in any sports? Did you have certain friends or memorable experiences that you want to share?
It could be that maybe, you had a rough childhood. Things weren’t easy for you in numerous ways. You had to find ways to persevere through them and make the most of it. You can share that experience of your childhood with them. Not in a manner to indicate “you better be grateful for what you have”, but just to have your child get to know you as a person more.
It can be funny, entertaining, and cool for them to hear about you growing up. They may learn a lot about you and that will establish a greater bond. It can also be nice to reminisce about positive aspects of your childhood.
How to Emotionally Connect with your Child: Find an activity you can enjoy together
Find an activity that you and your child can enjoy together. What are some common interests you both have? Could it be that you both enjoy spending time outdoors in nature, or snuggling up for a movie night? Maybe you could try something new that you don’t usually engage in, like painting or drawing.
This is a great way to spend time with your child. Not only will you be showing interest in what they like to do, but you can bond while doing it together! Perhaps you can even switch off doing different activities together. Someone picks one activity per week. For example, your child will pick a walk in the park and feed the ducks peas for that week. Next, you’ll want to go through magazines and create a collage together!
There are lots of great ideas online for activities. Especially sensory activities for children! You can google and find many different crafts you two can do together, that will also enrich their brains. Maybe you can find different recipes to bake together, like desserts, snacks, and more!
Making time and an effort to connect with your child will mean the world to them. You will be building a relationship full of trust, vulnerability, and understanding with them. Children are more aware and smarter than we like to think. They recognize the lengths you go to spend time with them and really enjoy those moments with you!
In the end, it’s always a great idea to also consult with a child therapist or marriage and family therapist. Maybe if you are seeking support in learning new ideas and skills for how to navigate parenting. It could be that you’re wanting a third party to help you and your child find ways to emotionally connect with one another.
Child therapy in Simi Valley, Ca is available now to help your family create real, desired change in your lives!
About Simi Psychological Group: We are a team of psychologists and therapists in Simi Valley, Ca offering an array of therapy services.
At our therapy practice in Simi Valley, Ca we offer Child therapy and family counseling, Teen therapy, Anxiety Treatment, Depression Therapy, Marriage Counseling, and Neuropsychological Testing. Now Offering Online Therapy in Los Angeles and Online Counseling Ventura County