In the first post of this blog series, we discussed some key aspects to creating a home that adult children want to come back to and visit. There are several tips that this blog series will explore in order to help make your home a home that is healthy, fun, and a place where the family loves to hang out.
This part of the blog series will focus on the concept of listening vs. lecturing.
The author of the blog “Building a home your kids want to come home to” wrote “Every time I start to tune out, I think of what I want in the future and tune back in.” This quote is critical to building a home where children feel valued and loved. Parents often have many different things on their minds and many tasks they are trying to accomplish. We all know how the incessant chatter of children can be overwhelming. It is easy for parents to simply to tune out that chatter in order to keep sane and to accomplish everything that they need to accomplish.
When your child is in high school and you want them to talk to you about obstacles or issues they are dealing with, then you must listen to them when they are young children. Sometimes, for example, this means after you pick them up from a friends’ birthday party, listening to their detailed stories and asking questions instead of merely sending them to bed.
The lecturing aspect of this concept involves talking at your children instead of talking with your children.
You are the parent in your children’s lives and often know “better.” However, in order to instill exploration and independence, it is vital to listen and hear your children instead of lecturing them about what is the best course of action. You may be able to force your child into a particular decision because “it is the best for them.” However, if that results in them keeping secrets and not including you in the “discussion” when they make life decisions, is it worth it?
Life is a journey and sometimes as a parent, you have to make a decision that your child will not like, but it is important to listen to their point of view before making a decision for them.
Chelsey Beauchamp, MS
cbeauchamp @ growcounseling.com