Strategies for Parenting Sensitive Children
Discipline is important in raising healthy children but properly disciplining them can be quite difficult when a child feel things more acutely than others. However, being sensitive does not pose any problems. In fact, sensitive children are the kindest and most compassionate ones that you’ll ever meet.
But still, bringing up sensitive kids poses some parenting challenges as these kids tend to be over sensitive and are worried about getting into troubles. They also cry often and require a lot of reassurance from the parents. While healthy discipline may help in changing their behaviour, harsh punishments can cause more problems. Here are some discipline strategies discussed that help in parenting sensitive children.
Accept Their Feelings
Love your kids for what they are and accept their sensitivity. Sensitivity in children is not a choice which they make but a biological trait. If they are feeling things more deeply than others, don’t try to suppress their feelings. Instead, see if there can be an easier and better way that they can deal with their sensitivity. Before feeling frustrated over their behaviour, remember that they are more compassionate and kind to others.
Listen To Your Inner Self
Parents of highly sensitive children often feel that their kids might be in need of therapy or psychiatry. Again, there is the fear of ADD and parents may even fear their kids are bipolar. This makes them think that the kids need to be diagnosed and need medication. But remember, the ‘experts’ are just trained to look at the labels and psycho-pathologize and cannot understand the symptoms in a one-hour consultation. Instead listen to your intuition and not to the experts. Look at your child with compassion and try to see things from their perspective while helping them see what you see.
Parents should take care not to relax their discipline too much with sensitive children. Otherwise, they won’t be prepared to deal with the real world when they grow up. Skipping out disciplinary rules that parents enforce while dealing with less sensitive children denies more sensitive kids the opportunities to learn and grow by experiences while also interfering with the actions and consequences. Sensitive kids are more focused on the feelings of others while ignoring their own. So set boundaries that encourage healthy behaviour.
School and Social Activities
Sensitive children are overstimulated by large crowds and chaotic environments. They are deeply affected by their surroundings and an aggressive culture. So there’s more to it when they just tell you that they don’t want to go to school. See if they are experiencing something painful at school or elsewhere. Trust them and ask if there is something you can help them with. Do not over-schedule them with activities all the day and create a peace corner where they can unwind themselves with some books or music. This will help them in getting recharged.
Praise Them Often
Hard work and continuous effort are always worthy of praise and children are no exception. Again, praising them too often no matter what they do can have a negative effect on their self-esteem. The one best thing with sensitive children is that they immediately recognize the feelings of others; and that’s surely worthy of praise. Also, most of the sensitive children lie to get out of troubles and praising them when they are honest can bring a positive effect on child behaviour.
Parents may sometimes avoid disciplining sensitive children due to fear of pain. But discipline is important when they face the outside world someday as an adult. Though it can be challenging to discipline sensitive kids, these thoughtful parenting strategies will help in sparing them the emotional anguish while making them become responsible adults as they grow up.