As parents, we want our children to know they are loved and valued. In order for our children to feel loved, we must make a strong connection with them. In fact, building a connection is crucial at all ages. Having and maintaining a strong connection with your children should always be a priority, no matter what age they are. The simple truth is it can be different for everyone. In reality, you may struggle at making a connection with your children. It will take different approaches to build that strong connection as every parent and child connection is unique. Additionally, there are differences in making connections with your son than with your daughter.
Building a Strong Connection with your Son:
The number one thing to remember about building a connection with your child (son or daughter) is being there means the world to them. Being there for your child can look a variety of ways. In the case of your son, it means being there for him as he grows into adulthood. A son needs his father because a father is the role model to the son. As boys grow into adolescent men, they need your influence as a parent all the more. If you are a father, the biggest piece of advice to building a connection with your son is to be there for him. Be the person you want him to become because he will more than likely grow to imitate you.
As a mother on the other hand, sons will look to their mothers for other forms of support. Sons will base their idea of a strong woman from their mother. A young boy also looks to their mother for emotional support. Not that a father can’t offer emotional support as well, as a matter of fact a good father will, but it is easier on young boys to go to their mother for emotional support and advice. Much like fathers, building a connection with your son is to be there for them when they need emotional support. Practice listening to their emotional needs and look for other ways to support their passions in life.
Another good way to build a strong connection with your son, as a father or mother, is by doing things with them. Doing things like playing catch, teaching them how to cook, watching their favorite TV show with them, teaching them how to fix things, and supporting them in their crucial moments of life is essential. Both parents should be there for their child, both by being present and paying attention to their emotional needs.
The key to having a strong connection with your son: don’t force them into things. Instead, introduce them to things you enjoy (without pressuring them to do it) while also allowing them to introduce things they like to you. When you find things you and your son enjoy doing, the easier it will be to spend quality time that builds strong connections.
Building a Strong Connection with your Daughter:
As mentioned above, building a connection with your daughter is different than with your son. While the fundamental message of being there should be top priority, daughters view their parents in different ways. Much like how a son will look to his father to be the role model, a daughter often looks at the mother the same way. As a mother, it’s important to build a connection with your daughter. Set the example for them. Show her what a strong woman is like, teach her lessons in womanhood, and provide emotional support for her.
As a father, your daughter needs you just as much. Daughters tend to switch gears with their fathers from how a son views their father. Daughters typically look to their fathers for emotional support. As a father, it’s your duty to teach your daughter what a good man is like. Helping your daughter learn what a good man is like will help them look and choose better partners later in life.
Whether its co-parenting or a more traditional form, both parents should spend time doing things with their daughter. Make an effort to teach them your interests and have them do the same. Don’t force them into doing things they don’t want to do. Instead, let them find their own hobbies and interests too.
In general, there are two great ways to build connections with your children (son or daughter). The first, is to be there for them. Don’t be absent in their life, children need their mother and father in their lives for different reasons. The second is to do things with them. Teach them about your hobbies and interests, while allowing your children to share their interests with you. The more things you do with your children, the stronger your bond will be.