Being a parent can be challenging, but maintaining a good relationship with your child doesn’t have to be. Maintaining a good relationship and understanding with your younger children, like toddlers, and your older child, like a teenager or young adult, can be a lot of fun! However, the stronger the parent-child relationship, the more favorable your impact on your child’s life as your child grows and goes through tough times, the more likely they will come to you for love and support.
Furthermore, a good parent-child relationship with mutual respect and good communication is essential for your children to grow up to have healthy, safe, and secure future relationships in their lifetime. Like any relationship, having a good one with your child requires time and patience in day-to-day life. Remember, they are growing little people, trying to navigate all the changes, schedules, peers, and distractions in their lives and the world around them. Make it easier on them as they attempt to process and learn about their emotions by spending time with them during life’s day-to-day activities.
Ready to discover our best tips for maintaining a good relationship with your child? Then let’s dive in!
Always Be Your Child’s Number One Fan
First and foremost, the number one rule in maintaining (and growing!) a healthy parent-child relationship, they must know you as their mom or dad are and always will be their number one fan. Let them know that no matter what happens with their grades, friendship, on the field, or with the ACT, you will always be on the sideline as their biggest fan!
They never have to worry about telling you something because they already know you will tell them the truth and still be their biggest fan. Don’t we all want that?
Limit Screen Time
Decide as a household what you both consider a healthy amount of screen time depending on your children's age and maturity levels for optimal relationship-building and great conversation. Teach them how to entertain themselves and find ways to stay curious without staring at screens all day. Let them know why they don’t have unlimited access to screen time and explain to them that you have set boundaries for your own screen time.
Talk to Your Child
It’s easy to set your child in front of the screen and get busy with your day. However, it’s essential to maintain a good relationship with your child as they get older that you talk to them now to build healthy social skills. Include them in your conversations in age-appropriate ways. Explain to them what you are doing throughout your day and why. Tell them stories about their grandparents and when you were growing up.
Tell them about what their aunts and uncles were like when you all were little kids. They will remember and tell the stories to their kids one day. Teach them the dying art of conversation. You will be glad you did when you're trying to have a good relationship with your grown child and find that they turned into delightful conversationalists!
Treat Your Child as You Would Want To Be Treated
Yes, it may sound odd. Maybe you’re thinking: of course I treat my child the way I want others to treat me. I feed them, clothe them, and am there for them when they fall. But looking over your relationship with your child, do you treat them the way you want to be treated? Little things matter a big deal to your child.
If they feel you are not paying attention to what they are saying or ignoring their feelings, then it’s time to reevaluate and get your relationship back on track. It’s easy in everyday living to take our children for granted. But they won’t always be little munchkins following us around while we do laundry or vacuum. One day they will grow up and remember how they felt and the attention and treatment they received as little kids. So, make sure it’s good!
Let Them See Failure
To maintain a good relationship with your child, they must see how you handle failure. It’s an unrealistic goal for your child to never see you fail. Plus, if they think you’ve never failed, imagine how hard it will be for them to let you know they failed a test or didn’t do well at a swim meet. If your child never knows you or other adults fail, they will have difficulty overcoming any challenges that may come their way. Be open with them about your struggles. Let them know they are never alone. You are always present with a listening ear to hear what is going on without judging or offering unwanted criticism or advice.
Play With Your Child
As simple as it sounds, spending time playing with your child the activities they want to spend time on shows your children that you encourage and care about them by joining them in play and receiving their undivided love and attention. Use your imagination!
Come up with fun, new games to play together. Or whatever your child loves to play, join in! Playing and having fun together creates a powerful emotional bond between you and your children that will be with them for years to come.
Always Remember What Developmental Stage Your Child Is In
It’s always fun to have your child with you for the day or spend time playing their favorite game. However, you must always keep your child's developmental stage in mind and adjust your questions and comments accordingly. It’s easy to forget that they are still children when you spend more time with them or bring them with you on essential outings. But make sure everything is developmentally appropriate.
Spend Quality Time With Your Child
Think quantity and quality. As the old saying goes, it’s quality over quantity. However, in recent years, it appears that maintaining a healthy relationship with your child and raising your child to be happy, well-adjusted adults need to spend dedicated, quality time with you. Consequently, your children need to also spend quantity time with you doing mundane everyday activities.
Children need to see what happens how you handle getting frustrated while driving. They need to watch your interactions and behavior toward people of all walks of life and from all backgrounds. Kindness starts early in life. If you want your child to have a healthy relationship with you, you need to focus on training your children to be kind to others, including you.
Make Sure You Are Making Quality Time for Each Individual Child
If you have more than one child, make sure you spend individual quality time with each of your children. Although they need to learn to behave and interact together. Sometimes it’s vital to leave everyone but one child at home so you can give them your undivided attention.
Set Relationship Boundaries With Your Child
Boundaries create structure both for you and your child. To maintain a healthy relationship with your child both now and when they are grown, it is essential now to create consistent, healthy boundaries in your relationship. Boundaries make life easier for everyone. Your child will be a much happier, well-adjusted adult if they know (and watch you) set healthy boundaries with all whom you come in contact within your life.
Create Routines Together
Routines in a child's life provide the child with safety and security in an ever chaotic world. Strengthening and maintaining a relationship requires consistency in when and where you spend undivided time with your child each week.
Set up a weekly parent-child date and always respect your child’s time by making them a priority. Show them early in life to treat the people you care about and those you want to maintain healthy relationships with to always be considerate and respectful to them.
Empathy is something we need more of in this world. And what better way than to teach your child the importance of empathy at a young age. Teach by example. Have empathy for your child, spouse, other people your child sees you come in contact with, and they will see empathy in action.
Authenticity matters when displaying empathy, and children are some of the best people for spotting fakes. By demonstrating to your child authentic empathy, you will train them to express genuine empathy to others in their life as they grow and mature, including you.
Always Be Present
We all get distracted from time to time, and our minds will wander while our child is talking to us. To maintain a good relationship with your child both now and in the future, you must spend time with your child and be present. Read to them, play with them, and simply be with them. If your children are older, get involved with them with their favorite hobbies. Spend time doing whatever it is they enjoy.
When your kids are grown, they won’t remember if the laundry stayed piled high in the laundry room or dirty dishes in the sink. Instead, your kids will remember that you always played their favorite imagination game or that you included them in your household chores.
Make Sure Your Child Knows You Love Them No Matter What
Life can get crazy. But as long as your child knows that no matter what mistakes they make or how they feel, you will always love and support them, then you have nothing to worry about when it comes to maintaining a lifelong relationship with your child!
Teach Your Child the Importance of Communicating to Those They Love
From an early age, it’s essential to teach your child the importance of communicating with those they love. In addition, they need to learn how to show their family and friends how much they love them. It can be challenging knowing how to show your loved ones you care about them as a kid. But look no further!
At Lovebox, we’ve designed a Lovebox for kids for family and friends to communicate with them. They can send them sweet messages, stickers, drawings, pictures, and more! Our Lovebox for Kids is a fun, easy-to-use way for kids to get comfortable expressing their love and affection to those in their life. They can even choose their own spinny heart for their box, which comes in many options, including a dog spinny, cat spinny, or pink, purple, or blue.
Our unique connected messaging device pairs with a free app so your friends and relatives can send them sweet messages. When the spinny heart starts spinning, it notifies your child they have a new message. After they receive the message, they can turn the heart back and send their messenger a waterfall of hearts. Our messaging device is a perfect way to get your kids involved early in expressing their love and emotions to those they love!
To effectively maintain a good relationship with your child, it’s imperative that you start listening to your child and always reassuring them that you are an emotional haven to whatever the world will bring their way. You are a safe space for them to share their feelings. Always respect their feelings and emotions, and they will trust you for the rest of their life.
And don’t forget to teach your child at an early age to tell their loved ones how they feel about them and not take love for granted. Whatever tips you choose to implement, the most crucial advice is that your child knows you love them no matter what if they know that you will have a close relationship for life!