It’s So Simple: Kids Just Want Your Time
If you’re a parent, you’ve probably heard the lamentation from others like you.
“I wish I was closer with my kids.”
“I wish I spent more time with my kids.”
Those feelings are real, and chances are, your kids sense it, too. Deep down, you already know it’s true: what they really want is you. Your time. Your love. Your closeness.
A recent study of 2,000 American children proves the feeling is mutual: 73 percent of them want to spend more time with their parents, and 70 percent of parents also want more opportunities to spend quality time together.
The survey was originally inspired by data showing that American families spend only 37 minutes of quality time together every weekday.
Since time does seem to have a faster pace than years gone by, this may come as no surprise. Families face stiff competition for attention nowadays. Life is busy.
But these are called the formative years for a reason. They rely heavily on acknowledging children, listening to and validating their concerns, praising efforts and offering plenty of love. Parenting this way may come easy if your own parents were attentive to your thoughts and gave plenty of love and praise.
Others may have been victims of emotional abuse, or an overlooked variation – neglect, whether intentional or not. In some families there is a near-total absence of support, affection and love. Still others experience put-downs, anger and selfishness – all of which can create future issues with boundaries, discipline and self-esteem.
It’s not easy to move forward and overcome these sometimes hereditary traits, but one has to regularly discuss apprehensions and fears – as well as learn the power of forgiveness.
Kids deserve good, healthy, happy parents. They also deserve their parents’ time. When parents actively listen to them, it lets them know that they’re worthy of attention and that their point of view has merit. That makes for a secure and caring relationship.
Most adults don’t remember the gifts they received as children. They remember how their parents made them feel.
Time, attention, affection and unconditional love and the most precious gifts a parent can give a child.