How To Talk About Difficult Topics With Your Children

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As parents, we always try to talk to children about love, trust, self-confidence, respect, friendships, and many other topics that nurture our children’s values. But, in a world where sometimes bad or difficult things happen, it is essential to be able to teach them how to deal with such topics.

Why Is It Good To Talk To Children About Difficult Topics?

One of the most challenging parts of parenting is explaining issues that are difficult for even adults to process. Topics such as death, violence, drug addiction problems, global warming, divorce, or illness are arduous to address, even among adults. But in the age of social media, live streaming, and 24-hour news coverage, young children are also exposed to those topics.

It is essential to face these challenges as exposure is almost imminent. Talking with our children about complex issues can strengthen their problem-solving skills, improve communication, and create stronger bonds with parents. They will understand that they can talk to you no matter how difficult things are. Talking about things that worry them may help your children cope with stress.

How To Guide The Conversation

We empower our children with knowledge and compassion by having conversations about serious topics and providing them with tools to become critical thinkers.

Talking about sad or troubling topics is not always easy, but there are some ways to initiate and guide the conversation so you can talk openly with your children:

Be Honest: Sharing your feelings and emotions with your children is the first step to having a sincere conversation and building real spaces with them.

Listen To Them: Before starting the conversation, you can ask them what they know about the topic to understand how they perceive it beforehand. 

Use Your Kid’s Age As A Guide To Starting Conversations: Depending on the age and developmental stage of your children, information is absorbed and processed differently. Understanding how they perceive the world based on age or developmental stage may help you judge the depth of the conversation and the best way to explain some things. 

Planning For Difficult Conversations: Practicing how to talk about certain topics before your children ask about them may help you choose the words you think are best for the situation. 

Take Care Of Yourself:  Remember that you always come first. If you’ve been through difficult experiences that are hard to talk about, get help – we’re listening! Only if you are, they are okay.

Difficult problems are part of everyone’s life. That’s why we believe it is essential to keep open channels of conversation with our children. Addressing these issues with compassion, love, and respect can positively impact their emotional development and social skills. 

As complex as these issues may be, putting them into perspective, asking questions, and finding answers together is an excellent way to bond with our children and create trusting spaces with them.

Copyright © by Anke Otto-Wolf - 2021 All Rights Reserved