It may seem strange, but sometimes loving your child is not as easy as it sounds. And sometimes, even though you do love them, it can be hard for your child to realise that you do love them. If you struggle with these things, try doing some of the following.
First and foremost, remind yourself that you’re not alone. Every mother and father, at some stage, feels daunted by the relationship they have with their child. When you experience this feeling, take some time out. Christopher Greene’s “Toddler Taming” says that this is the “point” of a place like MacDonalds. It can give both you and your child a moment to enjoy “Time Out”.
Then, when you’re both ready to get back into the swing of things, doing some of the following can help to prevent those moments where both parent and child struggle to feel the love.
Sometimes, simply being “available” is the most important thing your child needs in order to know that you love them. And knowing that they are loved can help to prevent them from doing the naughty things that drive us mad.
Say yes to your child as often as you can.
Your child wants to explore your environment as a way of learning about the world. So, when they go for the pots and pans cupboard, stick in some ear plugs and let them have their way.
Water has amazing soothing abilities. So if your child is grumpy or upset, try giving them a bath, or going for a swim with them.
The baby and toddler period is a time of extremes. It can be very stressful, but it can also be incredibly enjoyable and fulfilling. Hold onto the moments of laughter and enjoyment.
Remember how small your child is. They won’t be that way for long. And, as parents, we often tend to expect a lot from our first child in particular.
Don’t be afraid to teach your child about feelings and emotions – we all sometimes feel happy, or tired, or sad or silly and it is important to try to be considerate of how other people feel. You will be surprised at how quickly your child will understand this.
Don’t feel the need to spend lots of money on your child or keep up with the latest crazes. A recycled box is as enjoyable to a small child as a brand new toy and making a kite is definitely more fun than just being given a bought one.
And, for yourself, take the time to enjoy your child, to enjoy being a parent and remember that this is but a moment in time – both the good moments and the bad.