Stop And Ask How They’re Doing
The pandemic has lingered on for months and months and months – about a year now, actually! WOW!!! To say it has brought many layers of changes to our everyday lives is an understatement. And things just haven’t “gone back to normal.” Who knows how “normal” things will ever be after this? The message of this post is very simple:
Don’t just assume your kids (young children and teens, alike) are doing okay and have adjusted to all these changes. Ask them. Regularly. Not constantly, but regularly. Take the time and make the time to sit down together and talk about how they and you are doing with all these changes in our lives. Ask them what is helping them adjust and cope and move forward. Ask them what is still really hard. Ask them what they absolutely hate about all this. Ask them who are the people that make a positive difference for them right now. Ask them what you could be doing more of, less of, or differently as a parent or as a family to help them be at their best after months of prolonged changes and adaptation. Ask if they would like someone else to talk with – a trusted family friend, pastor, coach, therapist, teacher, etc.
And listen. Really listen. Let them know you hear their challenges, and you are willing to be as helpful as you can in their continuing adjustment and coping. And don’t be afraid to share some of your own pandemic adjustment challenges with them. Let them know they aren’t the only ones who may be struggling, or just sick of the “new normal.” This may all seem like very simplistic advice. But it can be so easy for us to assume our kids are doing well when things look fine on the surface. And when we are caught up in our own stresses and challenges, we may forget to check beyond the surface with our kids. But they need us to ask. They need to know we are paying attention. Especially in such challenging times as these! Blessings to you and your precious family.