It is psychologically proven that almost 95 per cent of children’s brain development happens by the age of 5 or 6. Hence there is a reason why parents should not treat kids as measly in all aspects, because they are capable of more than what you think they are.
M.D Ludwig Janus, psychoanalyst specialising in prenatal and perinatal psychology proclaims that “Our whole existence is based on the vitality and the dynamic experiences of our very beginning. This period…is the foundation of our life and our experiences of our relationship to the world.” – Explains aptly the importance of treating your kids as adults.
Here are a few reasons as to why children should be treated as adults:
YOUR CHILDREN WILL KNOW THEIR BOUNDARIES
If you take your 7 year old out to a shopping mall to buy clothes, shoes, etc. for the both of you, you might have your kid fiddling with and dropping things in the store, while you are trying on clothes or shoes and you think it’s okay. No it isn’t. This kind of behaviour should not be encouraged considering it usual and natural to children. Know that children have the ability to understand where to draw the line, when made to realise as to what is inappropriate and what is not, because even as kids their brains are developing, for even if they do not understand as well as us, they are able to absorb more than we think they can.
THEY WILL BE MORE RESPONSIBLE AS INDIVIDUALS
Encourage your kids to pick up their own toys, keep their clothes or shoes in the proper place, make their own beds, feed the pet, etc. Don’t pamper them to an extent where they get so dependent on you that they get used to ridding themselves off of responsibility as they grow up, because responsibility doesn’t come suddenly on reaching a certain age but in fact it builds itself brick by brick in time; the process of which starts at childhood itself. Let them know that they are responsible and independent individuals, who like any other adult have specific independent roles to play.
THEY ‘LL UTILISE THEIR POTENTIAL AND DO MORE THAN WHAT’S EXPECTED
You are probably not aware of the fact that you often underestimate your children’s capacities and capabilities. You allow them to not recognise their own potential when you expect less out of them.
You might think that your child won’t pick up his or her toys or make his or her own bed, even if told to. But how can you be sure that they won’t? Have you tried telling them first? If you have, why would they disregard the responsibility? You must make them realise that they have to learn to do their own things just like their parents take care of their own as independent and mature human beings. Children might not know as to what may be the right thing to do but you as a parent must not encourage their naiveté and excuse them for their childish mistakes, because they have the potential to behave otherwise; it is necessary to let them know when they are wrong and told how to correct themselves, for their benefit.
CHILDREN INTERNALISE ESSENTIAL VALUES FROM CHILDHOOD
Respect, empathy, kindness, sophistication, politeness are values, all of which children imbibe within themselves from childhood itself. So next time when your boy hits somebody out of playful anger, don’t pardon him disregarding such offensive behaviours as childish acts. Your child must understand the importance of having respect for another individual and the depravity of physical violence which stands against the value of kindness, so that he doesn’t grow up deprived of essential values, believing that it isn’t that big a deal to wound another person either physically or mentally.
THEY WILL DEVELOP IMMENSE SELF CONFIDENCE
Treat them as adults; show them that you believe in them and have faith in them, so that they learn to believe in themselves. When they will realise what responsibility is and guided by a sense of responsibility will take care of certain things independently, knowing that that is exactly what their role as an individual demands, they will gain immense confidence, which will in turn help them in pulling things together better than kids their own age, who are made to feel as though they are incapable of taking their own responsibility.
THEY WILL BE SELF RELIANT AND RESILIENT
Sometimes you got to be the golden hand with iron gloves for your child’s wellbeing. When you teach them independence and treat them as an adult they will not feel the need to bank on you for everything. They will grow up to be resilient and will be able to better handle sticky situations in life, even as kids, when you are not around.
For instance: if your child falls down while playing on the ground with other kids, don’t run to him or her, hysterically crying out to ask if they are alright and then smother them. Let them learn to get up on their own, while you lend a hand for support. Tell them that it’s alright and it shouldn’t hurt much, and that they should be more careful in the future. Let them feel as though they can take control of themselves.
THEY WILL LEARN TO REGULATE THEIR EMOTIONS
As parents you shouldn’t satisfy all of your child’s whims and fancies pardoning them as “kids who know no better”. Let them learn to calm themselves down and understand that it isn’t always possible to get what one wants instantaneously; provided it be the stuffed toy your child noticed on the shop window or an expensive dress.
THEY WILL LEARN TO COOPERATE WITH YOU AND OTHERS
This is one of the most important values that you will inculcate in your children when you treat them as adults. Allow them to help you with cooking, in doing the dishes, washing the car, feeding the younger child, etc. So that they know how it is to live together with other individuals in cooperation. It will not only help them in acquiring experience but will teach them the importance of relationships and how living and sharing experiences with other individuals can make life better, whether as children or adults.
YOUR KIDS WILL FEEL THAT THEY CARRY IMPORTANCE AND CREDENCE
When you don’t disregard your child’s dreams, ambitions or even mere opinions which, even though keeps changing in time, they will know that they carry importance irrespective of their age. Let your child voice their opinions on controversial matters in the proximity of adults. Don’t always censor them from being who they really are because you see them differently and expect that they are bound to behave in a certain way as kids; you are disallowing them to rise to their full potential as adult beings.
THEY WILL GROW UP KNOWING THAT THEY CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE
When you value your children, show them importance, expect responsibility out of them akin to that of a mature and independent individual, then they will make a difference in not only their lives but will bring difference in your lives as well. Don’t let go to waste the age when your child’s brain is developing and needs the best of nourishment. Don’t undermine them. Always let them know that they are capable of better.
Your child grows a little bit every day, both physically and mentally, absorbing values and morals which time uses, to caressingly mould them into distinctive adults. It is necessary that you implant in them the seeds of a proficient adult individual, during their growing years.