I encourage all parents who care about the future of their children to read this text. I know that quite a few of them will not want to hear what I say in this article, but your children really need you to hear this message. Even if you do not agree with my point of view, please follow my recommendations at the end of the article. Once you see the positive changes in your child’s life, you will understand why I say that!
— Victoria Prooday
The silent tragedy affecting today’s children (And what to do)
There is a silent tragedy that is developing at home, and it is about our most precious jewels – our children. Working with hundreds of children and families as a professional therapist, I witnessed this tragedy before my eyes.
Our children are in a devastating emotional state! Talk to teachers and professionals working in this field for 15 years. You will certainly hear concerns similar to mine. In addition, over the last 15 years, researchers have published alarming statistics stating a clear and steady increase in mental illness among children, now reaching epidemic proportions:
• 43% increase in ADHD
• 37% increase in adolescent depression
• 200% increase in suicide rate among children aged 10 to 14
How much evidence do we need before waking up?
No , “only a diagnosis” is not the answer!
No , “they are just born like that” is not the answer!
No , “it’s the fault of the school system” is not the answer!
Yes , as painful as it is possible to admit, in many cases we, the parents, are the answer to many problems in our children!
It is scientifically proven that the brain has the ability to connect to the environment. Unfortunately, with the environment and the new parenting styles we provide to our children, we are leading their brains in the wrong direction and contributing to their problems in daily life.
Yes , there are still children born with disabilities and despite the efforts of their parents to provide a balanced environment, their children continue to have problems. These are NOT the children I’m talking about here.
I speak of many others whose problems are greatly shaped by the environmental factors that parents, with their greatest intentions, provide to their children. As I saw during my practice, the moment parents change their perspective on parenting, children change.
What’s wrong ?
Today’s children are deprived of the foundations of a healthy childhood, such as:
- Parents available at the emotional level
- Clearly defined limits and guidelines
- Balanced diet and adequate sleep
- Movement and the outdoors
- Creative play, social interaction, opportunities for free time and boredom
Instead, the children have:
- Parents distracted numerically speaking
- An indulgent parenting style that leaves children “leading the world”
- From a sense of law rather than responsibility
- Inadequate sleep and unbalanced diet
- From a sedentary lifestyle, indoors
- Endless stimulation, technological babysitters, instant gratification and a lack of quiet moments
Could anyone imagine that it is possible to raise children in such an unhealthy environment? Of course not ! There are no shortcuts for parenting, and we can not deceive human nature. As we have just seen, the results are devastating. Our children are paying for the loss of a well-rounded childhood and emotional well-being.
How to arrange this?
If we want our children to become happy and healthy individuals, we need to wake up and get back to basics. It’s always possible! I know this because hundreds of my clients see positive changes in the emotional state of their children in just a few weeks (and in some cases, a few days) after the implementation of these recommendations:
Set boundaries and remember that you are the parent of your child, you are not his friend Give children a well-balanced lifestyle filled with what children NEED, not just what they want WANT. Do not be afraid to say “No! To your children if what they want is not what they need.
- Provide nutritious foods and limit snacks.
- Spend at least an hour a day in a green area: biking, hiking, fishing, watching birds / insects
- Have a family dinner every day without technology.
- Play a board game a day. (List of family games)
- Involve your child in a chore a day (folding laundry, cleaning toys, putting away clothes, unpacking, setting the table, etc.)
- Implement a consistent sleep routine to make sure your child gets enough sleep in a room without technology
Teach responsibility and independence. Do not protect them too little chess. This helps to train them to have the skills to meet the challenges of life:
Do not store your child’s backpack, do not wear a backpack, do not bring your lunch / school diary to school, and do not peel a banana for a 5-year-old. Teach them the necessary skills rather than do everything for them. Teach a delayed gratification and offer opportunities against “boredom” because boredom is the time when creativity awakens:
- Do not feel responsible for being an entertainment for your child.
- Do not use technology as a method against boredom.
- Avoid using technology during meals, cars, restaurants, malls. Use these moments as opportunities to train their brains to work under “boredom”
- Help them create a “first aid kit against boredom” with activity ideas for the “I’m bored” moments.
Be emotionally available to connect with children and teach them self-regulation as well as social skills:
- Turn off your phone until the children are in bed to avoid digital distractions.
- Become the emotional trainer of your child. Teach them to recognize and deal with frustration and anger.
- Teach hospitality, decision-making, sharing, empathy, table manners, communication skills,
- Connect emotionally – Smile, cuddle, kiss, tickle, read, dance, jump or crawl with your child.
We need to make some changes in the lives of our children before this whole generation of children becomes on medication! It’s not too late yet, but soon it will be …