It’s a question we may have not asked very much in the past – how much physical space should my child – or in fact- any child have?
That’s because children have traditionally been seen as extensions of their adult counterparts – an extra limb that’s an extension of ourselves and that we love deerly for sure, but still – whose own bodies and privacy we haven’t given much thought to.
One parent has given those important questions much thought, however – and come to some fascinating and critical conclusions that I think every single parent out there in the world must read.
Whether you’re convinced at the end or not – it is definitely thought-provoking and worth sharing along to other parents out there!
“Kiss grandma hello, kiss grandpa good bye” – these are sentences so many parents have said to their children without second thought. But there is a good explanation as to why it’s best to avoid doing this.
The main conclusion?
“Forcing children to touch people when they don’t want to leaves them vulnerable to sexual abusers, most of whom are people known to the children they abuse,” according to Ursula Wagner, a mental health clinician with the FamilyWorks program at Heartland Alliance in Chicago.
For this reason, Katia believes that children should never be pushed to give affection – not even to mom or dad.
It’s important, she adds, to remember that as a parent, you don’t “own yourr child’s body”. In fact, it’s important to get them used to having ownership over their own bodies. This includes teaching them that they have every right to impose physical boundaries when they want. This is particularly important for daughters.
“When we force children to submit to unwanted affection in order not to offend a relative or hurt a friend’s feelings, we teach them that their bodies do not really belong to them because they have to push aside their own feelings about what feels right to them,” Irene van der Zande from the Kidpower Teenpower Fullpower International organization told CNN.
The bottom line? While teaching them to always be respectful, do give your children the right to choose how physically close they want to get to you and your loved ones – you’re doing them a favor on the long run!
I had never thought about this – but I certainly can understand it and will never insist that my child give anyone a hug or kiss again. Please share this article if you agree it is important parents change their attitude toward this issue.
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