How do you address challenging topics with your kids (death, race, sex, injustice, etc.)? For March’s Carnival of Natural Parenting we asked you to tell us how you tackle these subjects. NPN’s Pinterest volunteers have been collecting information from experts about the best ways to broach sensitive subjects with your kids, along with personal stories from parents about how they managed these kinds of conversations on our board Talking With Kids. If you are looking for help with a particularly tricky subject, check it out! Below are some of my personal favorite pins from that board, some of which have already been helpful for my family.
For information on how to submit your own post to the carnival in the future, read details here.
From HealthyChildren.org, this is a great rundown of what you can expect from grieving children, how to help them with their feelings, and some tips for what not to do.
Sarah MacLaughlin, at Balancing Act, wrote a great post about helping your kids have the ability to work through a family member’s cancer in their own way.
At HelpLine.org is a great post written by a group of mental health professionals about how parents can help their kids adjust while they are divorcing.
Dulce, at Dulce de leche, wrote a wonderful series on Sex Ed in a Christian home. The posts are written like she is talking to her three daughters, and I found this one, about how she hopes to help them avoid abusive relationships as they grow into adulthood, particularly moving.
Written by Diane Levin, Ph.D., at PBS Parents, is a comprehensive post about how to talk to your kids about the news, when the news is difficult, upsetting, and scary.
At Talking About Giving, Kristin Williamson writes about talking to your kids about poverty, including a list of ways you can get kids involved in helping fight the hunger problem near your home.
I love this post by Chase, at Some Species Eat Their Young, about why parents need to have tough conversations with our kids.
Christine Langlois at Canadian Living Moms is a post about how to talk to kids about a parent’s job loss, including the importance in helping them feel empowered to help the family as you adjust to your new financial situation.
I am very intrigued by this concept of the Circle of Security, as explained by Stacy at Is There Any Mommy Out There? I definitely find it hardest to just be with and support my kids when they are experiencing the emotions that were not supported in me as a kid. How about you?
And finally, Naomi at Seven Cherubs wrote a great post about how to protect your kids from sexual abuse.
One thing that all of these posts, and the others on the Pinterest board have in common, is a focus on giving kids honest and truthful information. If you can help your child use real words to describe their feelings, bodies, and personal challenges, they are so much better equipped to deal with them as they go out into the world.
This also follows for teaching them to be kind when faced with differences in others. Many studies have proven that we do our children a dishonor when we treat them as if they couldn’t possibly understand what is happening. Of course we need to be careful, like when talking to them about a tragedy that is being discussed on the radio, to not give them more information than they are ready for. But with love and empathy, we can help them work through pain and worry, and embrace the world and all its glorious differences.
Photo Credit San Jose Library.