Letting go amid strong support may hold the key to how well our kids adjust to and navigate their return to in-person social interactions. Parents can’t always protect their children from life’s ups and downs, but they can build a loving “scaffold,” a framework around them that guides and protects as they grow and face life’s challenges.
Ways to “scaffold” our children while boosting self-esteem & easing social reentry:
- Show empathy, validation and intervention. Listen to and reassure them that you understand their fears and concerns. Be proactive and non-judgmental if they need tutors, counseling, etc.
- Structure routines and schedules to give a sense of security. Reestablish family rules and routines that may have fallen by the wayside over the past year.
- Encourage social interactions. Continue to model and teach positive, prosocial behaviors. Practice socializing by taking walks with your child and talking to people you meet along the way. Continue with FaceTime conversations with close friends and family members to boost confidence while your kids sharpen their social skills
Source: Harold S. Koplewicz, MD, President of the Child Mind Institute, and Author of “The Scaffold Effect: Raising Resilient, Self-Reliant, and Secure Kids in an Age of Anxiety.”
Glenview Northbrook Coalition for Youth’s (GNCY) “How To” Series provides parents and caregivers with tips, presentations and materials to support the teens in their lives.
It’s not one 60-minute conversation.
It’s 60 one-minute conversations.