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  • Experts And Children Say That When You Do This One Thing, Kids Feel Loved

    It's not as complicated as you think.
    by Judy Santiago Aladin . Published Feb 14, 2023
Experts And Children Say That When You Do This One Thing, Kids Feel Loved
  • Dr. Gary Chapman, the author of the book The Five Love Languages, said that although parents naturally love their children, many children don't feel loved. 

    "One possible reason is that parents aren’t “speaking” their child’s primary love language. Love can be expressed and received in five distinct ways or “languages,” which include words of affirmation, quality time, acts of service, gifts or physical touch. If parents don’t speak the right language, a child likely won’t feel loved, even though theparents may speak the other love languages," the author and pastor wrote in an article

    Love languages of children

    There are different ways to show your love to your children:

    Physical touch

    This is when you are holding and cuddling them close to you, and is said to be the "most natural language for parents." Research shows that children who were held more by their parents become more emotionally healthy than those who don't.

    Acts of service

    This is when you do your day-to-day tasks of feeding, cleaning, and serving your child. Yes, although these seem routinary, these are also important because you are doing things for them that they cannot do yet by themselves.

    Quality time

    Meanwhile, this is one of their favorites, like when you spend time playing with them and reading books. These activities, although may seem small to you, mean the world to them. Chapman explained why, "The child has your undivided attention, and nothing is more important to him."

    READ ALSO: 'Be Present In Your Play Time,' And Other Tips To Make WFH Work For You And Your Child

    Giving gifts

    This love language is something that a four-year-old child would understand. They love receiving and unwrapping presents, and this is also a teaching moment for your child.

    READ ALSO: 'Team Kahoy Doll House Edition!' This Mom Shares Precious Handmade Gift To Her Daughter


    Words of affirmation

    Telling them you love them or giving them encouraging words is also a way to make them feel loved. When they try to walk, talk, or read, your positive words will help keep them going. Read here how saying affirmations help raise your child's confidence.

    READ ALSO: Music Is The Love Language In The Bacarro Household

    While there are many ways to make your kids feel loved, one stands out as their favorite. 

    What can you do that make your child feel loved?

    On TikTok, a licensed mental health counselor said, he asked this question to children, and about 95% gave the same answer: they feel loved when you play with them.

    "I always thought the answer would be something big and huge, but the answer was very consistent with all the kids I asked this question to. I thought answers would go from like vacations to events to the new toys and those sorts of things, but like I said their answer was consistent," said Joshua Terhune, MA, LMHC.

    watch now

    @kintsugi_counseling When does your child feel loved by you? Answered by a child therapist #therapy #therapytiktok #playtherapy #parenting ? original sound - Joshua Terhune, LMHC

    He added, "Play is the language of children. They don't have all the brain structures needed to adequately communicate their thoughts and feeling, but they can and it's through play."

    Terhune also referenced Fred Rogers, the creator and star of the longstanding children's television show 'Mr. Rogers Neighborhood,' who said play is really the work of childhood. Terhune said, "It's how kids make sense of the world around them, and so when you play with them, you're speaking their language. And that helps them make sense of everything and help feel safer and more connected with you. And in the end, that's what it's really about."

    READ ALSO: Get to Know Mister Rogers! 8 Pieces of His Timeless and Golden Parenting Advice

    We asked the same question to the kids in the Smart Parenting community. Their unanimous answer? Watch here.

    Remember: Playing with your child is not just the role of the mom or a caregiver. Dads need to time for play too. Here's why.

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