Can you still remember what you got as a birthday gift when you were three years old? Or even five? Or seven? Barely, right? Kids won’t remember that you gave them a dollhouse as big as them. They won’t remember that remote-controlled aircraft that you got for their fifth birthday. It hurts to say that, but it’s true. You don’t remember what you got from your parents when you were a kid, but you remember how happy you were or how sad because they weren’t there.
In a hyper-connected world, it is now more important than ever to focus on what your kids do, watch, and listen to. Take your eyes off them for a minute and the next thing you know, they are talking to a stranger on the Internet. Yes, that happens all the time. Read about it on Facebook, and the stories will scare you to death.
That doesn’t mean that you need to be beside them 24/7. It just means that although it is important to make ends meet, it is also vital to be present in their lives. You have to know your kids. You have to spend time with them. How can you do that when you’re juggling two jobs and cleaning the house? Well, you simply have to be a superhuman who can be in two places at once. Okay, that’s not possible, but do you get what it means?
Take Them with You
There are several errands in a week that you can take the kids with you but you don’t because it’s such a hassle. Forget about what it’s like to have them in the car. As long as they are strapped to their car seats, you should be fine. This is one of the ways you can spend time with them outside of your usual working hours. Taking them with you to do errands is a win-win situation. You get to finish your tasks and spend time with them.
You will understand this need to spend time with your kids when you’re old and gray. Many senior adults suffer from rheumatism, heart disease, and many other ailments. In the future, you’ll want nothing but to talk to them and share a meal with them. Some seniors even use their health as an excuse. Yet, your kids are going to be too busy to even take you to a rheumatoid arthritis care center or your heart doctor.
Play with Them
Your kids want nothing but for you to play with them. You can buy them the coolest toys, and they will still want you to play with them. What is it with kids and their need for your undivided attention? You cannot buy your way out of playtime.
Kids need their parents’ attention because they feel that they don’t get it enough. Sad, right? Research shows that kids who seek your attention do so because you never initiate a play or a conversation. They will start acting out because they feel neglected and maybe even unloved.
Human history will tell you that relationships start with breaking bread. Sitting down at the dinner table and eating together is the cornerstone of every family. Still, many American families reported that they eat together fewer than five times a week. Out of approximately 21 meals, families share fewer than five meals a day.
Studies show that children who eat with their families are happier and have better grades. They are also more sociable and are likely to avoid substance abuse problems. You’re going to eat either way, so why not use that time to eat with your kids? It’s not like they’re going to eat for five hours. At most, you have to waste an extra hour of your day waiting for them to finish their meals.
Talk to Them
Whether it be because of the pandemic or not, trust that your kids understand your situation. Even kids as little as two years old can already understand that things can be a little tight financially. If they complain about the food, tell them that you can experiment with a new dish tomorrow using the same ingredients. If you are working two full-time jobs, tell them that it’s for food, electricity, and the Internet.
Kids understand more than parents give them credit for. Talk to them. Open up to them. Honesty in a relationship will go a long way toward a healthier and happier life.
Parents are so busy these days that it gets hard to involve themselves in their kids’ lives. Never allow for this to happen. Whether you need to cut back on your working hours or save more by reducing expenses at home, you have to carve time out of your busy schedules to spend time with your kids.