CHILDREN’S FEELINGS ARE UNIQUE At home, it is not unusual to hear these grievances, from young kids. “You take sides of the brother, always favor him, seems like you don’t like me”? “You never cook what I like, even when I ask for it”? When we hear the young children pour out their inner feelings, as parents, we mostly lash out with our adult logic and defensive answers. With all our full-strength we answer back: “That is not true. Didn’t I take your sides plenty of times, don’t you see; never speak to me like that again.” “Don’t complain, eat whatever I cook; you have to learn to like whatever served” Most parents are unaware of the importance of feelings in their children’s lives. There are very quick to scorn at any opinions expressed by the young ones. It’s about time that the parents gain some awareness regarding the feelings voiced by the children on various occasions. ABOUT FEELINGS: A child’s feelings are real and as solid as what we adults are exposed mostly in our daily lives. You could no more ignore what your child earnestly felt, than the way you could not ignore a bolted door when you need to go out. Children’s feelings, it’s true sometimes they sound flimsy, change quickly, but at the moment when spoken, you have to take them as a strong reality. Assume that it's being felt right inside him genuinely. See it as: if a child is feeling a certain way, that’s the way it is really for him at that moment. The awareness of this fact has to be realized by parents to balance some of the child’s concerns. There is one more actuality that parents’ need to learn: All the child’s feelings are exclusive and his alone. You can’t compare his sensitivities with anyone else. When the older child likes ice-cream, there is no rule that the younger one should also like the ice cream. His choices may be altogether different. He may prefer a juice. In a family, no two children feel the same way about the same things. It is an important revelation, to remember, for any parent. As parents, it is this very difference between the two siblings that is to be understood and appreciated. Any child will be greatly fortunate if his uniqueness recognized by his parents. Differences between the children should not be considered as irritants, nuisance, or an antic. See their requests or their feelings as their special strengths. Accept your children as they are but not as you wanted them to be. When parents respect the children’s feelings; children, in turn, learn to respect and trust their feelings. We as parents acceptably approve the child feelings and his perceptions. And help him to trust his own opinions and assess what is right for him. It will work out like giving him a lifeguard to protect and save in times of crisis. If we don’t endorse our child’s feelings and ideas of his, it will amount to numb his abilities to face a threat or fight any crisis or sense any danger. It’s like removing his lifeguard when he dives into a swimming pool. The outside world is always blind and in a hurry and never pauses to see if your child has a lifeguard or no. It merely shouts, “What if there is no lifeguard, you know how to swim.” The danger is stacked against your child once he enters the hard world. The trust of his feelings, his perceptions like a survival gear guarding him all the time. The parents support he packs it as a back-up. These mental kits, he trustfully depends upon, will surely give him enough in-built courage if any harm comes his way. Dear Parents teach your child to trust his feelings – to his advantage and good future.