Fredericksburg Parent

September 2014

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28 Fredericksburg Parent and Family • September 2014 family values Emoticons: digital icons, such as :), used to express emotions in text. While emoticons express emotions on flat surfaces, emotions are not as simplistic or as easily under- stood in 3D. They are complex and develop inwardly based on many factors in a person's upbringing, culture and per- sonality. emotional health develops in childhood and parents contribute to it greatly. over the next several months, i will discuss the founda- tional components of emotional health in children: building blocks. These create real emotional health and are far more than an icon in a message. These establish emotional well- being and must be learned in the early years to ensure emotional health for a lifetime. Building Block #1: Sense of Security "Bill me sumpin'," he asked over and over again. We built forts, towers, chairs, stuffed animal corals and more. At 1-year-old, my son was beginning to learn valuable lessons for his future emotional health by playing with a block set. it seems impossible, but it's not. he was learning he could trust us to take care of him. Caring for his physical needs the prior year taught him, "my parents will not let me get hurt and my requests will be answered with my safety in mind." he was secure in trying new things — a large new block set gifted for his first birthday — because he trusted us to guard his safety. Emoticon Probable Undermines to a Sense of Security How do we give kids the roots they need to hold on through storms? Keep Financial Discussions Private. Kids don't need to know if you're struggling financially. it's enough to say, "no, i'm sorry, that doesn't fit in our budget." Kids shouldn't worry about a roof over their heads or food on the table. Give your kids a sense of secu- rity by taking care of it. Keep Disagreements Private. Kids should feel secure that their parents have a stable, loving relationship. Work out disagree- ments behind closed doors. Fill your home with love, not argu- ments that threaten your chil- dren's safety and security. Retain Normalcy in a Crisis. every family will weather storms together. remember, you are the rock children cling to in a storm. showing strength in the face of adversity gives the security chil- dren need. Discuss your fears pri- vately. Children are not equipped to handle adult situations. Have a Backup Plan. Plan well for emergencies. This is what insurance policies and sav- ings accounts are for. Make sure your financial house is in order to give kids greater security. Don't Cry on Your Child's Shoulder. if Mom and Dad crumble in a crisis, who will take care of the kids? it's your job to be your child's security blanket, not the other way around. your kids are counting on you to provide reas- surance and stable ground to stand on. Adapted from Giving Your Child a Sense of Security By Jaipi sixbear By eLAine sTone Building Block One: Security Reality

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