A parent shares tried-and-tested tips on how to talk to your child about difficult subjects. Keep reading to find out what they are!
My 5-year-old daughter is starting to ask me questions like, “Mommy, why do you go to work? Can you just stay at home?”
One time she asked, “Why can’t we buy that toy I saw on TV?” And when she saw on television that some parts of Asia have been flooded, she inquired, “Why do floods happen?”
During these times when she is so inquisitive, I always seem to run out of words to explain the answers to her questions.
Now, if my child is already asking me these type of questions when she is still very young, it’s most likely that she’ll ask even more difficult questions when she’s older.
I cannot help but ask myself this question then — how do you talk to your child about tough issues? How can I talk to my young children about difficult issues or issues that might not yet be appropriate for their age?
Many things are happening around our country and around the world, and discussing sensitive issues with my children can really be challenging.
That’s why I did my own research and came up with a list of suggestions on how to tackle difficult topics with children. I’m sharing them here with you, in case you find them useful.
Even before your child starts to become curious about difficult issues such as sex, relationships, death, natural disasters or all sorts of things, prepare yourself by reading books and other materials, and by educating yourself.
In doing so, you will be able to answer your child’s questions with the simplest explanation, without making up stories. You can also give him/her the most accurate information that you can, to help avoid him/her from forming any misconceptions.
Discuss things with them from a young age
While your children are still young, use storybooks as tools to talk about tough issues. Nowadays, there are numerous illustrated children’s books which help explain tough issues in the form of stories.
You can use these books as a starting point for a discussion with your children, based on the story you have read.
This should be done while our children are still young because they can already see and hear about such issues from the television and other forms of media.
As early as possible, let us — the parents — lay the foundation for our children, and properly educate them in this area.