Parents help to build the self-esteem foundation of their children. Whether you realize it or not, the words that you say to your children have a true impact in their lives. In moments of anger and/or frustration, parents tend to say things without thinking that those words can truly hurt.
Here are a few phrases that you should stop saying to your children with the reasons why!
1. Here, I will do it for you. This one should be a no-brainer. Although it is natural to want to help your children with their projects or chores, don’t take over and do it for them. How else will they learn?!
2. Don’t cry. Telling a child “not to cry” has the potential to stifle their emotions. Children need to feel safe when it comes to shedding tears and not bottling things up. There is nothing wrong with expression of feeling, it is completely normal.
3. Why can’t you be more like… Never compare your child to someone else. There is nothing that makes them feel worse than hearing that they aren’t as good as another person. All people have their own unique gifts and strengths. Celebrate instead of comparing.
4. You are what you eat. Being judgmental about your child’s eating and exercise habits can cause body image issues and lead to eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia. Make sure that you have healthy conversations about food and they will learn life-long lessons about food choice.
5. I promise. When you break a promise to a child, you run the risk of damaging their trust in your word. Instead say, “I’ll try”. “Trying” says that you are going to use all of your resources to make it happen, but you are leaving a small window open just in case it doesn’t work out.
6. Your father/mother is an idiot. Never insult your partner in front of your child. That can build up resentment towards you if you do. Children are not supposed to know about problems between their parents. They love you both. You don’t want them learning that type of disrespect because it an manifest in their school/social world or even turn around on you.