Children are naturally emotional and, as a parent, sometimes this can be tough to handle.
Children are naturally emotional and, as a parent, sometimes this can be tough to handle. And teaching your child how to manage these emotions can be incredibly hard.
Kids develop in all ways including socially, cognitively, physically and of course, emotionally so it is part of their growing up and development.
Children respond to feelings, how different they are, and they experience choices and options throughout their lives.
Developing emotionally means learning about feelings and understanding what they are. It is a way to ensure that when your child experiences certain situations that they have the life skills to cope with.
Emotional wellbeing is dictated by the way your child learns to cope and has the skills to manage emotions. There are many ways parents can help their child manage their feelings by supporting their child from a young age and understanding that even babies feel extreme emotions – hence why babies cry or get upset.
As your child grows older, they develop feelings of shame, guilt, happiness, empathy and bashfulness for example. A school child will learn to manage them and understand their feelings more with their parent’s support.
Emotions can be good or bad; obviously, happiness and joy are great but kids can feel so-called bad emotions, like fear. Some kids will suffer heart racing, butterflies or headaches when they get stressed which is an active response to the feeling’s emotions cause.
Stress, anger or distress can all cause these side effects of the emotions. We are familiar with the fight or flight response which effects all kids when they get scared and it is OK to get frightened, but your child needs to know how to cope.
Crying is one way a child lets out their fears but as a child grows, they are less likely to cry than a two-year-old, for example, but those emotions still exist. Kids need to know to use their words and parents play an important role in showing their child how they manage their emotions themselves.
Parents can help by listening to their child, understanding their emotions and teaching them to discuss their issues and worries. Asking questions can help your child work through their emotions as they feel like parents are genuinely interested in understanding them.
Kids usually want to be heard and by listening you are stopping their need to get frustrated or angry at their lack of understanding for their emotions. Kids want to know that it is normal to feel upset, anger or sadness.
Let your child know parents feel these things too and it is normal. Show your child how you cope with emotions, if you are sad you may cry or if you are angry you may sit down and talk about it.
This all matters in showing your child that emotions are not only normal but important.
Keep working on it; support your child and their emotional development.
Emma Hayes is a thirty-something mum of two girls aged 16 and 10, planting her right into the teenage and tween-age years! Follow her on Twitter at @EmmaHayes25.