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Loudoun County, Sterling, VA

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Things you can tell your child when they’re crying

An infant cannot express their feelings with words, the only possible way of communicating is crying. They express they are hurt, hungry, sad or dirty by crying. At such a young age, the reasons are limited and it is easier to figure what our kids need; we just try things until our options are exhausted. During their growing years, but the crying stays and the reasons start increasing. Kids are not capable of explaining their emotions as adults do, and as frustrating as it is to hear your kids cry, it is as important to understand what is going on in their little minds. Sometimes, parents, in the heat of the moment say things which only makes matters worse or we are too occupied with work or chores and instead of talking, we just tell them to stop crying. Telling your children to ‘Stop crying’, only gaslights the situation. Just like adults, kids don’t want to be told what to do, they need you to listen and acknowledge their feelings. So, how do you calm your kid without telling them to stop crying? Here is a list of things you can tell your child when they are crying.

Things to say instead of ‘Don’t cry’:

  1. I know this is hard for you, but it will be alright.
  2. It is okay to be sad.
  3. That was really sad/disappointing/scary.
  4. Hey buddy, we are in this together, I will help you.
  5. It isn’t fair, but we will come up with a solution.
  6. It’s ok, we’ve got this.

Sometimes, kids cry only to get a reaction. Crying doesn’t necessarily mean something is wrong, so try not to label their feelings. To make it quick, sometimes parents give in to their kids demands or distract; both of these only make things difficult later. A lot of parents tell their kids that big boys/girls don’t cry; this way you are only making them feel their emotions are not validated. This is a list of things you should avoid telling your kids when they are crying:

Things you should not say to your kids:

  1. It wasn’t even worth crying about.
  2. You are so stupid/lazy.
  3. Don’t cry or I will give you something to cry about.
  4. What is wrong?
  5. Why cant you be more like your sister/brother?

If a kid spends a lot of time alone, they might lack basic communication skills. A lot of kids with working parents attend preschool programs. If you are a working parent, it might be difficult for you to keep your cool during such situations and spend enough time with your child to understand them, which is why it is necessary to find a toddler care where they are well-cared for; a place where their feelings are acknowledged and respected. Your kids might not stop crying right away, you may not always find a solution, but you hang in there. Your goal is to communicate better with your child and it will be worth all the time it takes.

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