A healthy parent-child relationship is crucial because it influences all the other relationships one makes as one goes through life. Studies suggest children with good parental relationships have higher social and communication skills. They can also make better love choices and be more affectionate.
If your relations with your parents are healthy and on friendly terms, you have a head start in life. However, you’re not alone if you struggle to bond with your parents.
Many people have complex relations with parents or had them at some point. The good news is that you can always mend your relationship, no matter how hard it seems. Below are some tips to help you mend your ties with your parents.
1. Support them in old age
It is not uncommon for children to drift apart from their parents when they set out to build their own lives. There may be many reasons for this falling apart, property, old traumas, or sour experiences. However, we must not forget that our parents have supported us throughout our lives in many ways.
Even though most of us are more concerned with our own lives than with our parents, let’s not forget that we have no one but us. Often parents face health issues as they enter their golden years.
For instance, those who served in the navy between 1930 and 1980 are at a high risk of developing mesothelioma. As the military heavily used asbestos in those decades, it has put many victims at an increased risk. If you want to learn more about mesothelioma and its treatment, visit mesotheliomahope.com. Even if your relationship with military parents was strained as you grew up, you can set aside your differences and care for them in later life.
Moreover, in old age, parents start to feel loneliness and isolation. They crave their children’s attention and time. Parents living alone or losing a partner can further add to their lonesome. Hence, as their child, you must support them, especially in this phase of life. You can help them in various ways, such as maintaining regular contact with them.
- Call them every other day
- Decide the days in the week convenient for you to visit them
- Motivate them to visit social gatherings
- Empathize with them
- Help them with their finances or legal matters
- Plan outings with them
These tips will help you cater to your parents and give you the necessary bonding time.
2. Spend time together
Most kids and parents have distance between them because they do not spend time with each other. When kids are young, they carve for their parent’s attention, but the parents are too busy with work. Lack of attention decreases their desire for their parent’s attention when they grow up without it. Hence, you can start spending quality time with them.
Spending time strengthens bonds, helps you relieve stress, and uplifts your mood. It also builds gratitude and makes you more affectionate. Moreover, many ideas can help you spend more time with your parents, such as:
- Plan a game night. You can play games such as monopoly, scrabble, or dumb charades
- Watch a movie together. Every Saturday can be a movie night where you watch all your favorite films
- Eat meals together. Eating together can build a routine for you guys and help you catch up on each other’s life
- Try different physical activities together. For example, you and your parents can hit the gym or go for a run
- Plan a picnic every month. Nature can uplift your mood, and you can make great memories
- Help your parents out with daily chores. This act will show your love and care for them
- Limit your screen time. Instead of looking at your phone all day, chat with your parents
Incorporating these tips into your relationship will significantly improve and help you be closer to your parents.
3. Express yourself
Expressing yourself and speaking your heart is essential for any relationship. It is also highly vital for the relationship we have with our parents. Unfortunately, many of us struggle to share our thoughts with our mom and dad. We fear their reaction or how they would think of us. Moreover, we’re afraid of their disappointment or that they might get angry at us. These thoughts signal a lack of emotional comfort between you and your parents.
The absence of emotional comfort and communication may cause many problems in your relationships with your parents, such as distance and lack of trust and reliability. In addition, it can lead to many assumptions and insecurity. Thus, children and parents should provide emotional support and build a safe and secure place where they can freely speak to each other. Various tips can help you talk to your parents.
- Don’t hold the past against them; to build a healthy relationship with your parents, you must let go of their past mistakes
- Start sharing your day with them; sharing daily details will help you build regular conversations with them
- Trust your parents. Believing that your parents understand your feelings will create trust between you
- Give them time to understand; some things you might share with your parents might not sit well with them; give them a halt, and they will come around
- When sharing your heart, don’t sit at a distance with them but show physical affection; for example, hold your parent’s hand while speaking and end the conversation with a hug
Talking your heart out with your parents might seem intimidating. However, with these tips, you can significantly enhance communication between you.
4. Learn to agree to disagree
We might be a product of our parents, but that doesn’t mean we share the same mindset. The biggest conflict between parents and children is their different points of view. Sometimes we try to convince our parents to agree with us and vice versa. However, enforcing your point of you on them will get you nowhere. You need to respect their thoughts and opinions to boost your relationship with them. You can start understanding your parent’s contrasting mindsets through a few simple changes.
- Understand that your parents are from a different time and probably hold values and ideas that are influenced by a specific period
- Learn to find a middle ground. You will always oppose something with your parents; instead of turning away, find a middle ground you both agree on and respect
- Avoid putting down their opinions; learn to value their thoughts and hear them respectfully.
- Stay calm and think before you speak
- Remember that your parents are also individuals with a mind
- Know that your parents want the best for you; most of the time, your parents’ disapproval comes from a place of immense love and care
Our relationship with our parents matters a lot. It is the kind of relationship that shapes our life and contributes to many emotional traits. A complicated relationship can negatively affect our personality and lead to low self-esteem. At the same time, a healthy relationship can lead to high social skills, higher satisfaction in life, and increased confidence. It might be frustrating having a complicated relationship with your parents.
However, it is never too late to improve your relationship with them. You, on your part, can do plenty to redefine your relations with them. You can spend time with them in various ways, such as working out together and helping with chores. They will need your love and care.