Don’t forget about love. While we mainly focus on nutrition, social skills and the development of our child in the most promoted areas, we should never forget love. Love has many faces and can be shown in the most unusual ways. Find the most appropriate way for your family’s dynamics and share your feelings, thoughts and emotions freely. The quality of the relationships in your family will improve greatly.
How do we show love?
We learn love from the first years of our life. We see how our parents talk to us, how they hold us and the way feelings should be handled and displayed. We understand how we should react to our environment and how we should respond to other people in terms of feelings and emotions. It’s always a heavy road if our parents lack the skills of showing their love in a healthy way and even more if our future relationships are also difficult in that area.
The younger we are, the easier it is for us to learn a healthy way of expressing love and feelings but it doesn’t mean we can’t improve this aspect later in life. Take some time to ponder how you’ve seen love in your family and how you developed your relationships during your entire life. Do you think you needed something different while you were young? Think about clear examples of how your parents showed you their love. Do you see a pattern? Is it healthy? Decide to improve where you can, since you owe this to your children. Break unhealthy patterns and learn to love unconditionally, no matter how old you are.
How your child needs to see love.
While showing love to your children, you should keep in mind two important aspects: that they are learning what love is and what their actual emotional needs are. Learning the wonderful colors and shapes of love is a journey your children should enjoy.
They should see that it is okay to have feelings towards other people and we should show our feelings constantly, in a healthy way. We all need to feel love and to feel loved, so we should never be ashamed of our feelings. It’s important to teach them balance and personal space. They should learn to be mindful of their own needs and the needs of the people around them.
Children should learn to identify their feelings and be able to express them. Show them how to say “I love you” and give them hugs as often as you can. The connection you build with them will be their main model of relationship.
Develop a secure attachment with them, where they always know you are there for them no matter what, so they can go confidently and explore the world around them. This is the most important thing you can do to help your child have healthy relationships in the future.
Your child’s needs in this area are not far from your own. Children can sense our feelings even from the smallest gestures. Even if they are unable to name the exact ways you show them your love, they can always understand how you actually feel.
The important thing is to be also more and more obvious about it, so he can become confident about showing his feelings too. Seeing your child say “I love you” with sparkling eyes, while hugging you tight will be the best thing in the world. Helping him be able to do this his entire life with the people he loves, might be the best gift you can give him.