Making a Connection

Integrative Psychotherapist Gloria Burrett took parents through an educative process at the latest edition of Express Masterclass.

(Written by Zeenish Imroz)

In the latest edition of Express Masterclass at Genesis Global School in Noida, integrative psychotherapist Gloria Burrett demonstrated to parents their role in the behavioural development of their six to 11 year olds. The main theme of the interaction was tuning in with a child, one of the main factors that builds connection and trust.

Burrett said that parenting is 90 per cent communication and 10 per cent guidance, whereas the opposite happens nowadays. While family plays a significant role, it needs to function as a collaborative team where not just the adults but also the children are involved in decision-making. Dining together is the key act for developing a network of communication within a family. “Instead of commanding children to be present at the table, parents should make them realise how their presence is valued. This will make the children feel wanted and included,” said Burrett.

One of the complaints that parents have is that children are more involved with friends. This has underlying reasons, such as becoming distanced from parents because of fear. “A majority of parents use fear to make their children obedient but are unaware of the safety wall that it builds in between. So, when parents start advising, the child will listen but nothing penetrates,” she said.

While the brain of a child is moulding at this age, a proper sense of responsibility with reasoning needs to be inculcated in their personality. Instead of rescuing the children, the correct problem-solving skills need to be ingrained in them. The parents need to appreciate effort and not focus on scores.

Parents and teachers need to take off their adult caps and connect with children. Sparing time for them and appreciating their unique abilities is crucial, instead of comparing a child with others. The latter not only leads to sibling rivalry and jealousy but also lowers self-esteem of a child. “Children who need more help in class should not be singled out as it creates a negative image in front of other classmates,” she added.

According to a research, the majority of children worry about their parents being stressed. This turns the table and, instead of parents being the caretakers, the children feel that burden which has negative consequences. “Adults should start a daily family ritual — taking three deep breaths to calm down the atmosphere. It is a must for every parent to have this magic pause button to calm down when the situation gets maddening,” said Burrett.

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