10 things Parents don’t tell their kids often but they should

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Times have changed since our childhood days and parents have become friendlier and open with their kids, but somewhere, the traditional Indian conservatism still inhibits us from talking about few things, which our kids, as part of the family, as individuals should know.

1. Good touch and bad touch. Though parents have evolved a lot in this area, still parents are a tad embarrassed at times especially with younger kids when they approach this topic.  This is one of the most important things to be told to the kids right from a very young age.  Children will be more aware about abuses and can report it to the parents.

2. Saying NO. Often parents refrain from saying NO to their kids and hence the kids find it difficult to accept NO for an answer from their teachers, peers, or other people around.

3. Respect the people around them. More than once, I have come across children disrespecting or being obnoxious with elders, teachers, their own friends, younger children.  It is never too early to teach the kids to be respectful and polite.  They should be polite and respect the people around them, including the helpers, drivers, watchmen, maids, waiters, beggars, anyone.  Nobody deserves to be treated badly.

4. Eating whatever is served. Most common complaint that most moms have nowadays is “my child doesn’t eat or doesn’t eat healthy”.  When my kids started with their solids or later had meals with us, I never made anything special for them in the middle of the meals.  They had to eat whatever was served and finish it without fuss.  There were and are days when I indulge but not daily.  Parents should tell the children to respect food and eat what the entire family eats.

5. Doing household chores. Kids, right from a very young age, should be taught to do their own chores and help in the household chores, of course age wise.  From keeping their bags and shoes in place, tidying up their bed, keeping the plates and vessels in sink after meals, filling up bottles, running small errands when a little older are the small things which they can do which again makes them independent in life too.

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6. Honoring time and commitments. Children should learn to honor time and schedule.  It is not that parents should be too stringent but at least they should ask their kids to keep track of time and also honor their commitments, be it in school or otherwise.

7. Talking about money. Often parents do not discuss the financial situation with their children thinking it is not their business.  But when the kids are a little older and understand finances, they should be made aware of the situation.  Might be they shouldn’t be told in details but they should have some idea.

8. Talking about sex and reproduction. The most important but often the most neglected topic, especially in India.  Nowadays as such kids learn a lot from their friends and Internet, so it is better that parents talk to their kids about the changes in body, sexual development, a bit about sex and reproduction, age appropriately.

9. State of mind. Children also go through stages of depression, anxiety, fear.  Parents should keep a track of their children’s behavior and keep on talking to them to sort out any issues that they might be having.  Children are very vulnerable and might take wrong steps.  Hence, communication is a must.

10. Learning to accept defeat and mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes and everyone has bad days.  Children should be taught to accept or take onus without blaming others or the situation.

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