Handle your kids with love

By Julia Fernandes

September 3, 2011

 

“You will always be your child’s favourite toy.”-- Vicki Lansky

 

The best gift any parent can givetheir child is love. Children can do without toys, games, sweets, friends -- butthey cannot do without love. I came across a very strange notion. One of myneighbours who has four little kids (2 girls and 2 boys) would often tell mymom that she would never physically demonstrate her love for her kids. Herreason being that by loving them the kids sit on their heads. I really found itstrange.

 

I found it even stranger when Ilearnt how some working women withdraw physical affections for their child asthey fear loving them would make them attached towards them and prevent themfrom going to work. Such children have mothers and yet they remain devoid ofmother’s love. Just as food is important for a child’s growth so is love asimportant if not more for a child’s healthy overall growth and development. Asparents you would never starve your children, yet so many parents do notrealize that they starve their children for love!

 

A child lives in his/her ownmake-believe world and expects the parents to also join and share the fantasiesof their world. When my nephew was around five to six years old, we would bothwatch cartoons together. And I myself love cartoons. So, I would ask him ifgiven a choice which cartoon world he would like to live in? Very happily andanimatedly he would select the choice of his cartoon world he wants to live inand I would state my choice and both of us would dreamily, even if it was justfor a moment, relish the thought of living in our respective cartoon worlds.

 

To an adult this may appear asbordering on escapism, but it is not. Childhood is the only period in our lifewhere we are given the luxury of dreaming the impossible. As children grow up,the realities of life gradually unfold. But till they are small allow them todream and also join them in their dreams. Nothing can be more delightful for achild than to see parents joining them in their dreams and being a part of theirworld.

 

I don’t have a child of my own,but I did have the privilege of being a part of the most beautiful formativeyears of my darling nephew. And I can confidently state that nothing works bestwith a child except love. Bring up your child with love for when you do so youautomatically learn to respect your child. Respect for a child? Yes, it is veryimportant to respect how a child feels, his thoughts, his wishes.

 

Many times I see parents forcingtheir children to eat, drink, sleep or study. This is where respect comes. If achild says he does not want to eat, respect that feeling. Do not force-feedyour child. He knows his body better than you. A child’s routine can beregulated and disciplined maintained in all the areas of his/her life with alittle room for adjusting to what a child feels. Of course, needless to say,parents must be on guard to understand when they are being taken for a ride by theirchild...:), you see all kids are very smart!

 

Never underestimate your child’sintelligence. Kids size up their parents and the weaknesses of their parentsmuch before parents get to know or understand how their kids are. So, do notget fooled by your child. Learn to say 'yes' to your child’s small demands andlearn to say 'no' to the big demands. If you don’t look sharp, you won’t evenknow when your child is outwitting you!

 

When there is a conversation goingon among adults, I know it is bad manners for a child to interrupt. But, it isalso rude when insensitive parents just brush away the opinions of theirchildren as if it does not matter at all. Hear them out. By doing so you showthat you respect their thoughts and their feelings. It is a nice feeling when achild is made to feel important.

 

Bringing up a child can be one themost beautiful and enriching experiences for those parents who are brave enoughto forego all that they have learnt and to re-learn about the world through theeyes of a growing child!