Why not give your kids attention?!

 Attention is listening to someone, engaging them, comforting them; showing love through affection and embrace.

When we think our affection toward our child is apparent, we take it for granted that they feel the same way. But really children may feel they aren’t as important as the phone/TV/other person and they may begin to seek attention.

Subconsciously they feel unseen, inferior, worthless, perhaps even betrayed; “am I not worth my parent’s attention?” this eats at them if they are denied regular undivided attention and they develop an inferiority complex, sometimes coupled with disruptive or conspicuous behavior.


These intrusions on a healthy relationship can easily be counteracted when you meet your child’s needs. Make sure you are fulfilling your responsibility as a parent and give your child your full attention daily, this, among other things, will secure the bond between you and your child. Feeling loved and cherished is a basic human requirement.


If the need for one-to-one time (even time just centered on the child) is given, the child doesn’t fight for attention by disrupting dinners or visitors.

If you are expecting visitors, having intense play-time with your child will allow it to feel well-nurtured and you to direct your attention later to your visitors.


Young children don’t realize when they are interrupting conversations. They explode with urgent impulses and can rarely keep a thought long enough to listen to what is going on around them. It can be aggravating to be interrupted as an adult (also as a child), but showing this anger will confuse the child, possibly even scaring him or causing him to feel angry, too, because he also “can’t get a word in”. Children haven’t yet the cognitive development to connect their actions to our reactions or to put themselves in the position of others.


It is honestly easier on everyone’s psyche to answer children’s questions or listen to their stories and calmly, authentically and respectfully remind them (with a genuine smile), that we are currently having a conversation with someone else.

My friend asked me during a long car ride whether I was frustrated we couldn’t lead a conversation without being interrupted by our children. I answered of course I was, but my son’s need was more important than my own, him being almost four years old and especially unhappy. As an adult I have the capacity to put his needs above my own to ensure his wellbeing. She asked, “Shouldn’t he learn to wait?” and I asked how on earth could he do that?! How does a child learn to wait? It is something that happens over time through individual growth and awareness. Nobody can force such learning. Becoming angry and threatening, or forcing and overpowering a child only leads to false compliance, driven by fear.


Attention has a biased reputation. People see it as a thing that spoils children, stemming from a time where children were to be seen but not heard. Raised in times where hard work was daily routine for parents, children had to fend for themselves and toughen up. (Note: children are well equipped to fend for themselves, as long as this is done by free will, with the option to seek refuge with parents at any given time.) If we overthink the motives behind certain parenting traditions, we find them to be outdated, obsolete and even downright harmful.

Showing attention cannot spoil a child. However, implementing praise will condition children to seek our attention, needing it as proof of their capabilities that become worthless without our confirmation.


Being attentive has nothing in common with praising a child and will not cause the child to seek attention.


Indulge your child in trusting in your affection and in return you will revel in the peaceful atmosphere at home.


I invite you to take your liberty and join the revolution!


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Tags: attachment parenting,, peaceful parenting,, authentic parenting,

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