Stress is a part of our daily lives, whether we are working full-time or going to school. In fact, children have a lot more stress than we think about. Many children have problems with other students that they are in classes with. They may even struggle with a certain teacher or two. Many children get overwhelmed by the amount of work that they have to do.
As a parent, we want to do whatever we can to shield our children from all of the stress and conflict that they are dealing with regularly. Here are some things that we can do to help our children flourish and learn the skills that they will need in the future.
Talk to them about their feelings. Too many people learn to bottle up their feelings, instead of figuring out how to talk about the things that are bothering them. This is especially true of boys, who often learn that it is not all right to cry. They realize that they have to keep everything inside so that nobody realizes what is going on.
However, that isn't the best way to handle life. It is much better to learn how to communicate about feelings so that a solution can be found! So, take the opportunity to talk to your children (especially your boys) about what is going on at school and how they really feel about it!
Once you figure out what is going on, it is time to take some action. This doesn't mean that you are going to start a fight. It just means that you have to figure out who you need to talk to so that things can change.
You may need to talk to a teacher about the classwork that is overwhelming your children. If other children are bothering yours, you may need to go to someone at school to get it taken care of. You may even want to talk to their parents so that your children don't have to worry about going to school.
Try to put yourself in their shoes. Instead of instantly blaming your child, really think about what he or she is feeling and why that is bothering your child. As you listen (without interrupting), do your best to remember what it felt like when you were in school and how important your friends were to you!
Then, talk to your children about the other perspective. You want your children to learn empathy, so make sure that, once you have listened to your child, and put yourself in his or her shoes, you are ready to talk to him about what the other person or people may be feeling. This step will help you and your child come up with a solution that may work for everyone. When everyone is too angry and upset, finding a solution feels like it is never going to happen.
Work together to come up with a solution. Though you want to do everything that you can to help your children, it is a good idea to talk to them about what is going on and see if they can figure out a solution (or multiple ones that may work).
If your child is struggling with this, talk to him or her about some of the different options he or she may have. Let your child try to figure out some different things that he or she can do. Help them talk through the different options and what might happen if they go in that direction. This will help your children learn to solve problems with your guidance.
The first few times, you may have to help a lot, but you should see that your children learn from these moments and will eventually be able to come up with options and figure out what the best solution is.
No matter how much you just want to help your children, the truth is that you can't always do it for them. Your children need to learn from their struggles so that they can find themselves in the world. Even if they make the wrong decision, your children will still be able to learn from it.
So, make sure that you talk to your children about their problems and feelings. You need to put yourself in your shoes and remember what it felt like when you were going to school. Then, talk to them about what the other side may be feeling. Empathy is an important skill to teach children, and it can be really hard to do. Then, talk to your child about the options, and let him or her figure out what is the best course of action.
Previously published on Medium and/or Newsbreak.
About the Creator
Small town country girl in southern Pennsylvania. Raising two boys on a small farm filled with horses, goats, chickens, rabbits, ducks, dogs, and a cat. Certified veterinary technician and writer at Virtually Shelley.