Are you the listening parent or the talking parent? When I first became a mother, I thought I knew it all. Little did I know that there was so much more to parenting than dressing her, feeding her, doing her laundry. Those are just the basic things. To effectively parent, I had to learn how to listen. I had to be able to understand the things she wasn’t saying or couldn’t say; when she was hungry or sad. I was a talker, I’d tell her what to do or when to do it, but I wasn’t listening to the fact that she didn’t know how to do it.
As you get older and a little more experience under your belt, you begin the understand the importance of hearing to understand instead of hearing to respond. Again, so me. When we listen we hear what’s not being said, what they’re afraid of saying and also why. Talking, in this instance, drowns them out and make them feel less confident about relaying their concerns to us or any adult for that matter. They don’t want to make us mad or hear us yell. It’s more about being conscious of the way we parent.
Listening requires us to:
- let them speak
- let them finish
- respect their feelings
- listen to understand
Talking in this case involves us:
- listening to repond
- telling them what to do vs. teaching them
- not understanding them
- not respecting their opinion
What are some added ways you listen to your child?