How to Create an Emotional Bond with your Child
By Anthony Kane, MD
One of the most powerful tools a parents have for
raising their children is the natural emotional bond that exists
between them and their child. Children who feel close to their
parents will have a strong desire to obey them. No child with this
type of connection to his parents will want to risk hurting that
connection by disobeying them. When such a relationship exists, the
mere look of dissatisfaction on the face of a parent will usually be
enough to curb inappropriate behavior. This bond is so strong and so
potent that it lasts even though adolescence when most of the
disciplinary tools at our disposal are ineffective. Often, it is the
only tool we have in guiding our teenage children. Parents who do
not have such a connection with their children have lost a vital
resource necessary for successful parenting.
In addition, this bond is essential for the child's emotional
stability. A recent psychology experiment studied people in their
forties, whose parent were emotionally distant from them. These
people were often depressed and lacked a sense of emotional well
being. They had more difficulty in adjusting to the work environment
and new social situations.
How do you develop this type of loving bond with your child? It
begins in your child's infancy and is built by giving your child the
love and affection that he needs.
Many well-meaning mothers are completely unaware that their own
children are suffering from the lack of physical touch. There are
many reasons for this. Most people associate deprived children as
those who are neglected, abused, or chronically ill. However, the
truth is that many of our children who come from good homes are not
getting the physical warmth and love that they need. In our
two-income society, unaffectionate caretakers, who provide for the
child's physical needs with as little warm and contact as
possible, often raise children. Also, many of us did not receive
enough physical love and warmth as children. As a result, it is not
natural to us to cuddle, coo, kiss, and love our children
affectionately. In addition, some children naturally need more
physical warmth. These touch-deprived children fill our schools.
They are the ones who often look sad and depressed, suffering from
not getting their physical needs for contact.
The United States is one of the richest countries in the history of
the world. Yet, our children in general are touch starved. We are
busy with our lives and our careers. We often raise our children in
broken homes. We as parents are suffering under the burden of so
much physical and emotional stress, that we are often just glad to
make it through the day without hitting or screaming at our
children. Who has time to give them affection? Yet, this is what our
children crave most from us. We fill our houses with toys and things
for our children, but it is us that they really need.
There is much talk about the generation gap. We all know that
adolescents naturally rebel. Sometimes we look at our little
children and wonder what is going to be in ten years when this cute
little four-year-old turns fourteen. Will he be one of the children
who abuses drugs? Is he going to steal? Is he going to do worse?
What is going to be?
You need to take the time now, and give your child the physical
warmth and love that your child needs. If you build strong bonds of
love with your child now, while he is still young, then all these
problems that you read about, will be just that; things that you
read about. You will not experience these problems in your own home,
because you have developed a strong relationship with you child.
Anthony Kane, MD is a physician, an international lecturer, and
director of special education. He is the author of a book,
numerous articles, and a number of online programs dealing with ADHD
treatment, ODD, parenting issues, and education. You may
visit his website, ADD ADHD Advances, and sign up for the ADD
ADHD Advances online journal.