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5 Things you Should Never Tell a Child

Bonding with children is a beautiful experience, yet, one daunting task that’s crucial for their upbringing. Engaging a child in various activities and being a part of those activities can help build a solid bond between you and the child.

A parent’s guidance, love and nurturing of their children is beneficial in grooming them into becoming confident people which helps them succeed in a lot of aspects of life. However, it’s important to watch what you say around kids especially when talking to them.

Words said to children are not easily erased and sticks to them like glue. Occasionally, parents or guardians are less careful than they should be when it comes to using unpleasant words, as a result, those words tend to have a negative impact on the child.

This is because a child’s mind is delicate and perception to the world is still very fragile in their formative years, hence, if you say the wrong things they would have a long-lasting effect. Therefore, as a parent, or a guardian that is responsible for a child or you have children around you in any way at any time, it’s important to watch what you say and refrain from using certain words, as to avoid uttering the following five (5) things to your child.

You can’t do this:

Don’t ever demoralize a child. It’s important to note that the child is in the learning phase of his/her life so there are definitely times when he/she would do something they are not able to. However, failure is a part of life and is a cue that tells you when you’re doing something right. Never underestimate children’s abilities and always try to give them another chance especially if the harm isn’t critical. Life is always about getting knocked down and getting back up again, and it doesn’t matter how many times you fall that doesn’t make one a failure except if you remain down. Everyone learns with time through trial and error.

Always saying yes:

In as much as every responsible parent wants the best for their child and are always eager to provide for the child. Love, however, is not always measured in material things but rather through the amount of attention given and care. Learn to say ‘no’ once in a while so as not to make them believe everything can be gotten on a platter.

We can’t afford it:

While you should be able to tell a child no, still, do not abuse the word ‘no’ and choke your child’s creativity in the process. Balancing is the key that every guardian should learn. Even when you’re telling a child no to having something in the hope he would learn to be responsible, it could be counter-productive. Money issues should be kept far away from kids as they are still young to bear such burden. You could always choose alternative routes and light-hearted ways to tell a child you can’t afford something.

It could be the perfect time to teach the child in simple terms about saving, budgeting and managing money. You can even try saying you’re saving to buy something very special for him/her and would give it later.

Labelling your child:

Most parents tend to call their children stupid, fat, lazy, dumb, and whatnot. Kids are innocent, hence, they soak up and absorb every word you say believing everything you say about them is true. Growing up he will believe that he’s stupid, dumb or ugly and this could affect his self-esteem tremendously.

Don’t compare:

Children like attention, heck even adults, so one can imagine a child that wants that attention and admiration from their parent. Children act up sometimes to get your attention because they want to feel loved and cared for every now and then. If your child is already trying to acquire this little attention and you end up criticizing and comparing them with phrases such as, “your sister is better than you,” “Your cousin is neater than you”, “your friend does well why don’t you?”, then you’re setting the child up to either turn out rebellious, being a bully or just lose their self-esteem because you’ve damaged their ego.

Just as well you should not ever tell a child that he is better than others or make them feel superior to their peers in any way. Remember, balancing and fairness are key.

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Becky Onoise

Becky Onoise is a psychologist, chocolate junkie, and puppy lover. A writer who is sorry... not sorry about correcting your grammar. She's a word enthusiast and aims to achieve her goals. Instagram handle @mz_berkey

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