10 Tips to Ease the Stress of Parenting in Any Crisis.
I have heard the question so many times… How do I parent in times of crisis? And… what do I tell the kids now?
Americans are getting a crash course in parenting in 2020! YIKES
Sadly, I am thinking the same thing today, even though they are all grown and on their own now. Being hit with a Global Pandemic and then a country in racial turmoil and riotous behavior has made me once again question the future.
As for me… I go straight to the bible when fear tries to overtake me. There, I found the words…
“Do not be afraid”.
That said, and no matter your faith, what in the world do we actively do to help our kids?
I know we are all concerned, so, I have compiled a list from experience and research, of tips to help kids in crisis times.
Here are 10 tips to incorporate into your parenting style during a crisis.
1. Keep a Normal Routine: Try as best you can to keep routines normal, like bedtimes, dinnertime, and school.
2. Model Control: They need to see your emotions in check so they can model that control in their own hearts and minds.
3. Validate Feelings: No matter the emotion, it is valid to an extent. Be sure to accept their feelings and gently guide them if off a bit. Let them know they are worth listening to.
4. Carve out time to discuss the issues: Dinner time or snack after school time can be a great time to discuss the issues they have heard about. Even playing catch in the yard or while coloring in a coloring book is a great time to talk deeply about issues without making the discussion too heavy.
5. Accept the “I Don’t Know” from your child: They may not know what is bothering them, and that is okay. Try not to force them to get it all out at the moment. Let them know you are there and willing to talk about any and all concerns. An open door leads to many avenues!
6. Accept your own “I Don’t Know”: Listen, we know we don’t have all the answers and the kids know it. They just want to hear we are on top of things and working toward an answer for the family. It is okay not to know everything.
7. Take a News Time Out: Turn off the TV or radio. Put down your phone. Don’t even bring the crisis up. Talk about anything but the current situation. It will be a breath of fresh air for the whole family.
8. Relax Some of the Rules: Now, I suggest you do this as a treat! That night when they just need Dad, let them stay up to spend time with him. The time they are all playing well together, don’t disturb it. If you are all into a movie or a game, don’t stop it for bedtime. Use that opportunity to bless them and allow extra time to be happy.
9. Create Some New Routines: If you normally go left, this time go right if you end up at the same place anyhow! What I mean is a change of routine that ends up the same. It is only different to them if they get a thrill out of it. Maybe eat dessert, then dinner. Or read two stories that night. Be creative and have fun.
10. PARTY: My kids know this is my jam. All “out of the norm” days are an excuse for a party. It is all in how you approach it. Music and laughter can heal the soul.
Hurricane = hurricane party | Quarantine = quarantine party
So my dear struggling parents, take a load off and pat yourselves on the back. Parenting is hard enough without the woes of 2020. Relax and follow these 10 tips.
Trust me, my kids think all global crises are a party waiting to happen. Not sure if that is good now that they are adults, but HEY… it got us through!
No matter what, happy thinking avails more than stress. Enjoy parenting and PARTY ON!