Respond to tears with kindness – always!!!
How often do we get agitated when our kids cry? Do we shirk them off or do we facilitate them emotionally?
Or do we just leave them crying?
Emotional Intelligence develops when we work on it from the very beginning and especially when we help our child deal with their tears, anger or frustration. As caring and conscious adults we have to break the age old myth that children cry to manipulate. We have to understand that in order to manipulate children must have the necessary skills to toy with emotions such as hypothetical thinking or impulse control or critical and rational thinking. These are skills which only develop and exhibit themselves until much later in life. As kind and caring adults we have to normalize our children’s tears – boys and girls! We have to avoid from negating their valid emotions and experiences
Validate their feelings, even if you find them crying constantly – try your best to not get irritated. Help them navigate their feelings. Try to find out reasons behind their tearful outbursts. Hold on to your composure and if you are too overwhelmed by their tearful outburst. Don’t yell at them, instead leave the room for a couple of minutes to regain your composure.
Here are some ways to respond to tears
1) Address their feelings, acknowledge their big emotions
2) Normalize their crying episode, let them know it’s good to let their tears out when they feel this
3) Empathize, acknowledge the fact that it is hard for them and that they are over whelmed
4) Offer help , let them know you are there for them to assist them through this, offer a hug, or the chance to have a heartfelt discussion to know what is upsetting them.
Reassure them and their feelings. Let them know crying is as valid as any other emotion and that they are not a bad child to have chosen to express themselves like this.