Tips For Talking To Your Kids About Tough Stuff

Author: Marguerite Willett

Tips for talking to your kids about tough stuff

Children are faced with a variety of questions about the world they live in. Some questions are easy to answer but others can pose more of challenge and leave you wondering how to respond. Questions about death, or the birds and the bees, can be awkward for you and even more unsettling for your child. That is why it is imperative that as a parent you find a good way breech these topics.

Parenting Magazine offers some advice for parents that are faced with this dilemma. One sound piece of advice the magazine suggests is asking your child how they feel about their question. The way they are thinking about the issue may be much different that you realize and it is important to understand what they are asking before beginning the conversation.

"They might be afraid - or just curious. You have to ascertain that by asking things like 'What did you hear? What do you think? If they are scared, ask what they're afraid of, don't assume you know. They could be using twisted logic, like they see a building collapse on TV and think it's Mommy's office building. Correct any misconceptions, and then offer assurance," explains Dr. Paul Coleman, a psychologist, to the magazine.

If your child does not come to you with a question, wait until they are the appropriate age to talk about difficult issues. There is no reason to worry a child with the topic of death if they are not concerned or have been directly effected by it. Hold off for the right time to talk about tough issues based on your child's maturity level and interests. When a child begins dating, for instance, might be a good time to discuss sex and related topics. 

In Brief

  • Children are faced with a variety of questions about the world they live in.

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