Hot answers tagged

70

I do not like my behavior. Parenting is difficult at every stage for somewhat different reasons. Children aren't miniature adults, especially at your child's age. They don't think or process like adults; they don't have a long period of time to learn 'the consequences' of simple behaviors like adults. Even some adults haven't learned yet to accept the ...


13

It sounds to me like you are a pragmatist. ("I told him and warned him but he went ahead and stood there. I am sorry he's hurt, but he could have avoided it easily enough.") How do you feel when you are hurt? It doesn't have to be your fault, but say you broke your toe on something in the dark. It was an accident, you were trying not to disturb your spouse. ...


8

First off, please don't worry! This is natural at this age and all children are like this in toddlerhood. My son, who is now 4, did the same thing with our cat at that age, and now he is very gentle and wonderful with cats. (My one year old has now entered that stage; our cat has passed, but she pulls on my 4 year old's hair and she finds it hilarious.) ...


5

Her problem was very much my problem when I was younger and it still comes out a bit today when I am not careful. Carnegie's book was a fundamental assist for me - I studied it, memorized much of it, and lived it. Coupling that knowledge with some anaylsis of humans helped me reach a much more balanced view. I had become so bent on humans not wanting to ...


5

Should you be worried? I don't think so, especially if she's empathetic in other situations. Empathy for squishable things is tough at that age, because squishing feels good, and having power over something - the power of life and death, in this case, even if she doesn't fully comprehend death and it's finality - is fascinating to a preschooler. As adults, ...


5

You're asking when a child develops the ability to understand that a pretend action is not a real action. This ability typically develops around their third year, so your daughter is probably around the point where she'll develop it. For example, in this excellent article on pretend play: At least by age 4, and probably younger, children can explicitly ...


3

A phrase I have heard is "treat the patient not the disease." That phrase may be helpful here. Since I too have trouble with empathy, lets sit down and analyze the situation without any. Should be more comfortable for both of us! =D Solution one is always to prevent the event from happening. Obviously that didn't work out so hot. Something about a 3 ...


3

Just to add to some great ideas in other answers... One of the things about your child you can influence most is your relationship with them. There could be a time when they are a teenager or young adult and they have a problem, possibly thinking they are in a way at fault. If they think of you as the parent who will listen and not judge/criticize them ...


3

In my experience, as well as in research publications, very young toddlers (2 yo) develop empathy skills. See the reference below as well as plenty of other papers using Google search for: pubmed promoting empathy in toddlers. Early signs of empathy (even the sense of fairness!) can be detected in very young babies even earlier. At 18 months, the empathy ...


3

Speaking as a parent with a dog, three cats, some fish and snails, and a 5-yr-old and a 34-month-old, time will be your best friend here. For our kids, we focus more on treating the animals gently (no chasing the cats, no pulling the dog's ears, remember the pet is a living creature, etc) and less on caring for the pets. Your best bet is to model the ...


2

You're correct that your son "should" have more empathy at this age, certainly not in all situations, but these are basic and easily comprehensible by a 3.5 year old, especially maternal distress. Recent developments in research cast doubt on early conceptions of young children as primarily egocentric and incurring of others’ needs. Studies reviewed ...


2

Disclaimer: I'm not a parent, so I do not have personal experience with this, except for having visited zoos as a child, too. This is based on the premise that you still want your children to enjoy the trip and not feel depressed and also children who are a bit older, but not yet teens. 1) Provide context for the children Before you visit the zoo, you ...


2

I had a long answer about how to behave if a child hurts itself and starts crying, with first-aid measures etc., but deleted it in the favour of the following which is a long answer targetted at you specifically. I find it hard to sympathize with people Not everyone has great, or even any, empathy. You do not necessarily need to feel bad about this, it ...


2

Arno gave some solid advice already, but I'm going to add to it from my own experiences as a child tutor and single mother to my 4-year-old son, and the advice I've received from multiple trusted childcare providers, friends who majored in child psychology, and my therapist who has decades of experience and specializes in working with children who aren't ...


2

This is from personal experience growing up as "probably somewhat on the spectrum but not enough to be diagnosed with something", and talking with other people in simular circumstances. Since you mention teaching empathy, I'd actually recommend putting this off for the time being. We typically teach children empathy but asking them to put ...


1

I scanned the other answers, and a few of them touch on this, but I am posting because I want to offer you slightly different advice. I feel it is important to acknowledge your child's experience as valid, whether you think they could have avoided it or not. In this particular situation, you may find it difficult to feel bad for your child for getting hurt ...


1

You will be watching your son like a hawk for the next 2-3 years. They bumble on ahead without a care in the world jumping head first into puddles and bashing their head off anything solid. The reason you don't feel sympathy is because it's pointless, they will hurt themselves and learn from it. But communication with a 3 year old will be lost, they have no ...


1

When my son (3.5) hurts himself I hurry over and help him up or into a more comfortable position and give him a strong hug. I tell him with a calm tone, "It's okay", or if it was bad and he's crying a lot, "It's going to be okay". I might also rub the painful area or just put my hand over it. Whether I warned him or not, I tell him, "you've got to be ...


1

This is what I do and works most of the time. Hug him first, try to reduce the shock he received. With that injury he already learnt something. Be calm, humans primarily learn with experience, not with teaching. Remember he will not listen to you while he is in pain. After the initial shock has passed, tell him that he needs to be more careful and listen ...


1

This could be a partial answer, but it could help at the zoo and the children's whole life. "what they wouldn't like somebody do to them, they shouldn't do others" in the same vein on the positive side. I hope this answers your question a little.


1

I remember the day my dad taught me empathy. I'm still very bad at connecting with how other people perceive my actions and so forth. When I was old enough to swim (8 maybe?) I did something mean, possibly kick my dad, and he told me I was in trouble and couldn't leave the pool until I apologized. I said sorry, but he didn't buy it so forced me to stay until ...


1

Until 22 or 24 years old I was also acting as if truth was the most important thing in life, and the way I was acting it also cost me friendships. As a results, I got depressed, had to go to psychoanalysis to feel better, and suddently I got very happy and social. I have learned this the hard way, but I think the following might help your child: -Visit some ...


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