Mom leaves Junior Zap and Dad at home when she goes out shopping. The two of them decide to make popcorn and watch tv, but Dad puts the television on golf. Junior Zap is enthused at first, because he is spending time with Dad, and he knows Dad likes golf. Junior Zap tries to stay enthused but becomes increasingly disinterested. Dad is not paying any attention to him now. Junior Zap is bored. Dad finally notices and turns the television off to play cars with his son.
Spending quality time with your child isn't as simple as sitting in the same room. Playing with your child on a daily basis will be time your child looks forward to.
When you spend time with your child, let him take the lead sometimes. Talk over possible choices and exchange points of view in choosing what you do together.
Children will try to do things that they think will please their parents. For example, your child will try to be like Dad and do what he likes to do. Some of a child's choices may be motivated by this, and as a parent you need to be sensitive and realize when it's time to switch to a more suitable activity for the child.
Undemanding children, trying hard to please, can be easy to ignore. Sometimes they need help expressing their needs.
Food for Thought:
- Do you talk with your child about what he wants to do when you have some time to spend together?
- How can you make more time to do things your child enjoys, while still having some time for yourself?
- Can you think of the last three times you and your child did something together that she chose?