I can still remember when I was anxiously waiting for my little one to say his first word. When he first said “mama” my heart melted! I took numerous videos which I wanted to cherish forever, after that, I must confess, I started taking everything for granted.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved all the funny, twisted words that he was coming up, and had great fun learning new words together but after my second child was born, life got busier and busier, and I found myself half listening.
It was never my intention to ignore him, but he would just go on and on about the same thing I found myself saying things like “Oh, That’s great” “Wow, well done.”
Now, even if he is small, it’s not difficult to notice when somebody is quite indifferent and doesn’t look in your eyes when is talking with you.
A while back we were in a coffee shop, and I witness a heartwarming moment. A mother was sitting with her daughter next to our table having the most beautiful conversations.
The little girls must have been around 4-year-old, and they just had a drink and were sharing a cake. No smart phones involved, just two people having a lovely time. The mother was asking her things about the school, about how the cake tastes but just having that one to one interaction.
What is a present but absent parent?
An absent parent can be a mother who is not fully present and especially not to the emotional life of the child.
This can happen for a couple of reasons.
It can be things like
- exhaustion (especially if you are a working mom, single mom or have multiple children)
- depression, trying to stretch yourself too thin
- didn’t find a way to connect with your child on an emotional level.
Us as humans we want to be loved, respected and to feel involved.
Love is the single most important thing for a child. We can provide guidance, protection, and encouragement, but if we don’t do it with love the child will feel it and it can be very difficult to cope.
When we talk with our children we need to pay attention to their needs. They don’t want to feel ignored and left out. When we talk with our children they need us to look in their eyes.
For our children, we are their world and this early days shape their character and their personalities.
Now, I know that life gets’s busy, and sometimes you may not have ideas of what to talk about, but I found that starting a conversation by asking questions, age appropriate, is a good start. When my little one was two, we were doing a lot of what color is that, what shape is it, how many plates are on the table and so on.
Our children are a separate person, and they deserve our undivided attention and respect.
That day, I had a chat with my husband about the way us, as parents, are responsible for their development and sometimes we just need to stop what we are doing look in their eyes and engage in conversations with them. That means no smartphones, checking emails, we can totally do that when they go to sleep.
If you are short of ideas, I put together 21 conversation starters to enjoy a wonderful time with your child. Free printable included.