RULE OF PARENTING #5: Spread The Love: 5 Ways For Showing Affections To Your Kids

5 Ways To Show Affection

Rules Of Parenting - # - Dad Child Outside HappyMost parents do love their children. Yet in the ‘busyness’ of life, parents can forget how to deliberately show affection to their children. Children, even the older ones, need physical affection, just to experience a sense of reassurance. Affection is not just ‘mom’s thing’; both mom and dad should find ways to express affection for their children, daily.

Here are some helpful ways you can show affection for your kids:

1. Get Physical

According to U.S. psychologists Karen Light and Karen Grewen, physical contact such as hugging causes the brain to emit the oxytocin chemical which creates emotions of trust, lessened fear and a sense of bonding. Touching your child often reassures them that you are there, that you care and that you love them. Hug your child every day, shower him with kisses or for the older ones, tap their back, touch their hand or ruffle their hair if they are not too comfortable with hugs and kisses. If you can, create a family ritual for saying “good morning” “goodbye” or “good night”— it can be a hug or a kiss, any appropriate physical contact will certainly bring you and your child closer and he will feel the love.

2. Baby Massage

In addition to hugging and kissing your little one, giving him massages often will be a much-appreciated show of love. Elaine Figel Scheider, author of Massaging Your Baby: The Joy of TouchTime™ – Effective Techniques for a Healthier, Happier, More Relaxed Child & Parent, says that massaging your tot creates a lifetime bond. It nourishes your child’s emotional, spiritual and physical growth while also building the connection between you and him. Massage time for toddlers is a great time for bonding, creating a sense of attachment, love, trust and open communication.

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3. Understand Your Kids’ Character

One of the reasons why some parents do not explicitly show or tell their children that they love them is that some children are just not comfortable with explicit show of love. Should you then withdraw and fail to show them affection? No. It is best to understand your child’s personality and then you can find creative ways to show him affection. For example, if your daughter is more open and outgoing, she might be fine with hugs and kisses even when her friends are around. Your geeky son, who likes to stay at one corner and read, may not be very open to hugs and kisses. Instead of neglecting him or embarrassing him with kisses and hugs, you could show him affection by taking time to hang out with him and read together.

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4. Lovin’ The Teen

Your teen is likely to denounce public display of affection. Nevertheless, this does not mean you should stop showing him your love. In fact, with all the peer pressure and demands from pop culture and media, your teens desperately need your affection and care, more at this time. While kisses may not work, a frequent hug, a squeeze of the shoulder, a cherry note, or hanging out with your teen may be appropriate ways of showing your deep felt affection for him.

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5. Show Some Complements

A great way to show affection is to compliment your child often. Nothing makes a child feel loved than a positive acknowledgment from his parents. Whether you have a young child or a teen, find something positive about them to compliment or praise. It could be how beautiful she looks in her dress, how well he writes, how good he is at baseball, how much of a good baker she is, how well she plays the piano. Just be sure that the compliments are genuine and moderated; do not over do it.

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