DO OUR KIDS KNOW WE RESPECT THEM?
Do you have a person in your life you look up to? Really, think of someone you really respect, like, give ear to, trust, whose company you would really enjoy and appreciate. Maybe, it’s your teacher, your colleague, or just a very good friend. How would you feel if you were around that person and constantly received only the leftovers (if any) of his/her time, energy and effort? If they ignored your questions, requests, just because there was someone or something more important to take care of? You would probably feel neglected, insignificant, humiliated, and disappointed.
Yet as adults we often treat kids in this way. We pick up the phone while in the middle of a conversation with the child, we ask random questions about school when the kid is talking about his favorite movie, we forget to say “please” when we ask for something, we forget to smile at the jokes which they so scrupulously tried to remember for us. And guess what, it hurts…We all know what it feels like when someone turns their back on us, especially someone we love.
Kids can’t always articulate it, but they crave for us to respect them through our words, attitude, tone of voice, look, time etc. They see how we treat our friends, they know we can find time, be friendly and attentive when we want to. And it pains them even more to see that we are too lazy to take – if not more – then at least the same effort in communicating with them.
If we want our kids to grow into self-confident individuals with good self-esteem and true reverence for others, we’ve got to start to respect them first.