There are so many things that can happen in life that can, to one degree or another, separate you from your children. Even staying in touch can be difficult in this age where managing a career can mean moving away from family and friends. Here are a few ideas that may help you to keep the home fires burning and maintain your relationship with your child.
Your Relationship with the Other Parent
Choose the other parent of your child carefully. Keep your future family in mind when deciding on the person who will be your child’s mother or father. So many times, we allow ourselves to make decisions that don’t consider the future of the relationship. People have strong feelings about their role as a parent. Often, they may not be aware of these feelings until they have children themselves. A rule of thumb that may serve is to assess their relationship with their parents and the role their parents played in their upbringing. They will likely not fall too far from the tree.
Promote the role of the other parent. Competitive feelings about “who loves who best” creates schisms in the children’s personality, family and their future family.
Five Ways to Improve Your Relationship with Your Child
There may be times when you will not be able to spend as much time with your children as you would like. When you are together listen to them as though this is the most important conversation in the world… because it is. While a lot may be going on elsewhere, your Subconscious Mind has already accommodated for this. This allows you to place your entire conscious focus on your child. This creates a depth of communication that is infectious and will carry great and enduring value over time. This practice will also serve both you and your children in all other relationships as it is central to all communication.
Create a structure with your child
Structure is a central feature of anything you want to grow in your life. You and your child both can adjust to almost any situation through a process called neuroplasticity. Your brain can literally grow new neurons and adjust all others if necessary. To do this you need to spend consistent time together in meaningful ways that promotes the relationship with your child through any kind of difficulty. As you know, there will be difficulties.
Create a support system for your child
Know the people who know your child. These are the people your child will go to when there are difficulties. The more organically you connect with them, the more organically inclusive will be the relationships they provide your child. The more you know the people who know your children, the deeper and more meaningful your day-to-day communication will be.
Know and support their strengths
Alex Doman founder and CEO of Advanced Brain Technologies shared how his parents understanding and support made all the difference in their relationships despite an early divorce and a strong independent streak. Early in our lives we tend to get into trouble because of something that we will later find is a strength. Being smart can create boredom. Struggling with authority may in the future reveal an independent point of view. Sensitivity may allow a deep commitment to empathy and compassion. Why wait? See it as a strength now and be the one who always sees them as they are.
When your children choose their mates, treat them as one of your own
When difficulties arise keep this in mind, as it can help you avoid long lasting feelings of betrayal that might affect the grandchildren. This will also allow the formation of ongoing communication patterns (visiting each week), holiday visiting patterns (my parents one day, yours the next) that are so essential as the years go by.
There are certainly many more ideas out there. Please leave a comment with a recommendation of your own!