It goes without saying that a mum has a big hand in promoting emotional stability in her child. Her timely guidance and interventions will lay a sound emotional base, on which her child will build a future, and foster social and inter personal relationships.
Emotional security for young children is to feel loved and cared for, which begins at home through parental love and protection. Daily interactions with people in their surroundings helps to lay a foundation for social and emotional experiences they will have in their lives. Here you’ll find select guidelines to do so – Illustrative examples herein will centre around toddlers in the age group of 15 to 28 months, and can also be applied up to preschool age.
By 28 months, a child develops many sensory and motor skills along with some rudimentary language skills. He uses physical skills more than language skills while interacting with others. If left to himself, he goes to extremes when expressing his emotional state. For instance, when deprived of his favourite toy by a peer, he may kick, pull hair, or scream and cry loudly to demand his toy back from the other child.
With growing maturity, the young child learns to negotiate and strategise his emotional transactions with guidance from his mum. Hence, it is important for mums to offer timely help and intervention if she is to guide and steer the child towards positive interpersonal behaviours.
- Your li’l one is in the process of developing simple language skills, therefore, he is likely to take the physically robust route to express his emotional state at a given moment of time. For instance, he may resort to behaviours such as shouting and hitting, or throwing a huge tantrum, for not being allowed to play during his bedtime.
- Due to a strong emotional bond between the two of you, he trusts you as well as depends on you to protect him from fearful and unknown situations, or from stranger anxiety, which he finds hard to handle. So, if you appoint a new nanny to take care of him in your absence, make sure you are physically present for the initial few days in the house till your child gets used to the this new person.
- He also needs your help to lay a solid foundation of positive interactional skills with others and be emotionally secured at the same time. This will enable him to secure future healthy relationships and maintain them.
- Initially, your child models on your behaviour. Therefore, be a consistently good model for him. Like, demonstrating calmness in handling difficult situations or any confrontations with your child.
Mums, listen up!
- Follow a fixed time table to set a daily routine for your child. A sudden change in routine will unsettle him, and make him cranky.
- Follow through on what you have told your child, to promote trust and demonstrate your love for him.
- Avoid airing differences or conflicts with other adults, in front of your child as it will scare him.
- Teach your child self help skills such as toilet training or brushing teeth, when he is emotionally ready. Otherwise it will prove to be counter productive – too much pressure may invite failures and avoidance of the task at hand.
- Whenever your child gets agitated, let him cuddle his favourite soft toy to calm him down.
Otherwise, let him play regularly with different types of play materials, toys and equipments to promote his sensory and motor skills as well as to vent out his extra or pent up energies.
- When your child indulges in misdeeds, refrain from scolding him. Instead, ask him to tell you why he was indulging in a that particular activity. Encourage him to own up and tell the truth.
- Give your child a big hug or pat him lovingly now and then, to make him feel loved and secure.
- Find ways to be occupied with what makes you happy and feel worthy of yourself. Positive outcomes will eventually rub off on your child.
In case you find it difficult to handle your li’l one’s extreme behaviours, consult with an expert to reach solutions that best suit you and your child.