Why Saying Sorry To Your Kids Is OK!
You’ve had a long day of work, you’re tired, and you’re just trying to get dinner on the table. You hear your kids fighting and arguing in the other room so you stop making dinner for a moment, hoping it doesn’t burn. Annoyed and frustrated, you rush in there and the first thing you do is yell. You don’t even know the reason they are fighting or whose fault it is, you just yell. We have all been there and its OK. We are human, yes even us parents. It’s OK not to be perfect and saying sorry to your kids is OK too. In fact, I think it makes us even better parents when we can admit when we’re wrong.
Saying sorry to your kids shows them that it’s OK to mess up. We’re not perfect and they don’t have to be either. As kids grow up they will mess up and don’t we want them to be able to come to us with their mistakes? Most kids who lie do so because they don’t want to get in trouble. But we want them to tell the truth. We want them to ask for help and admit when they have messed up. Well this starts with us. We must show them nobody is perfect and it’s OK.
I am a firm believer of giving respect to get respect, regardless of age. Saying sorry to your kids will show them respect so when they need to say sorry it will come naturally to them. If we don’t offer our kids an apology when it’s needed, what are we teaching them? The goal is to teach them how to be a polite and respectful kid. Let’s face it, kids mimic our behavior whether it’s good or bad. Admitting our mistakes and apologizing makes it easier for our kids to do the same.
Apologizing doesn’t take away your authority. Your kids still know who is the boss. Kids look up to their parents, so let’s set the example. Next time your kids yell at their sibling and you want them to say sorry they will have seen you apologize and know that mistakes happen.
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Teaching our kids forgiveness and acceptance is so important. This includes self-acceptance. Knowing they can make a mistake and ask forgiveness is a sign of strength and self-awareness. It shows that they can make a mistake and still be a worthy competent person. This also sets the tone for how they let others treat them. I want my kids to know their self-worth and never let anyone disrespect them. We have all heard the saying, “Respect your elders” and I agree we should give respect. But we should give respect to everyone, young and old.
For some it can be hard to say sorry to a child. They think they need to be perfect or they don’t want to lose the authority they have. And sometimes society puts these perfect parent stigmas in our heads. But saying sorry to your child will be one of the best things you ever do. I have done it from the beginning and treated my kids with the same respect that I would give to an adult. And because of that my kids know when someone is treating them wrong, they never try to lie to avoid getting in trouble, and they are empathetic to the needs and feelings of others. They have no problem admitting when they are wrong, saying sorry and asking for forgiveness.
If you have been that mean parent and you felt bad about it but didn’t say sorry for whatever reason, try it out. I promise it will be OK, and it will strengthen the bond and relationship you have with your kid.
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