Helpful Communication Tips for Parents/Guardians

“Communication is the bridge that keeps you connected with your children.”

WHAT IT MEANS

  • Genuine communication takes place when you and your children share a two-way exchange of thoughts and feelings.

WHY IT MATTERS

  • Communication can become especially challenging with teenagers. Perhaps not long ago, “it was like you had a backstage pass to you children’s lives,” says the book Breaking the Code. “Now the best you can hope for is a seat out in the audience, and it probably won’t even be a very good seat.” Contrary to appearances, when this happens children need communication the most!

WHAT YOU CAN DO

  • Adapt to your child’s time line: Do so even if it means late-night conversations.
  • Fight distraction: Do not multitask when your children are speaking, turn off the TV and put the phone down. Focus on what your child is saying and treat his or her concern as worthy of your full attention.
  • Take advantage of informal settings: Sometimes children open up when they are not sitting face-to-face. Take advantage of car rides and meal times; talk about the worst thing and the best thing that happened that day. This practice unites the family and lets each one know that no one has to face a problem along.
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