Essentials for Parenting Highly Sensitive Children

Highly sensitive children are at risk of internalizing a lasting and highly damaging sense of shame – a sense that they’re somehow “lacking” compared to more outgoing siblings and peers. Parents and other significant adults in their lives need to do all they can to prevent this unwarranted sense of shame from taking root. 

If you have a highly sensitive child, the following points are likely just reminders for you. However, they may be helpful for others who are important to your child too. 

Value your child 

A highly sensitive child’s experience of the world may be different from yours, but it is real. He or she is not “faking” tantrums or frustration to get attention or manipulate you. Your child can’t adapt to “be like you” and the sooner you can gratefully accept the child you have, the happier you will both be. 

Validate your child 

All highly sensitive children eventually notice that they are different from other kids. Your child needs to know that you value them and that they are not an oddity. Remind them that many people are like them. 

When they face their weaknesses or failings, they need you to counter their self-doubts with a more balanced perspective. Bringing up a success to match a failure is important for wiring your child’s brain for self-esteem.  Remind them of their unusual strengths in another area. 

Protect your child 

To build confidence in a new situation, your highly sensitive child will need to take smaller steps than other children, with lots of encouragement from you. It’s extremely important not to force your child to go beyond what they’re comfortable with. Pushing this child to help them “get over their fear” will backfire terribly. Certainly, don’t let others pressure your child to do something he or she is not ready to do. 

Accept that a slower pace means peace 

Highly sensitive kids thrive on predictability and routine, and they need much more down time in their schedule than “regular” kids. Any intense experience should be balanced by a quiet, restful “retreat” that allows them to regroup emotionally.  

Cultivate patience 

When discipline is called for, always remember that even a stern talking to can be crushing to these kids. Generally, they’re harsh self-critics, quick to condemn themselves as “bad” or “useless” when they mess up. It’s a good idea to conclude discipline with a reminder that everyone makes mistakes. 

Don’t fret about all the “fun things” your child seems to be missing out on, advises Aron. Your child doesn’t have to live the same childhood that you did. He or she has their own ideas about what is “fun.” Stay positive, be proud of your child and predict a great future for them, and you’ll help your child stay positive too. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Boosting the Self Esteem of a Highly Sensitive Child

Self-esteem is how we each feel about ourselves at any given moment, but you must keep in mind that it’s very dynamic in nature. You can feel like a million bucks when you throw on that new outfit you put together for an interview but feel like a wreck if the interview doesn’t go your way. 

It’s not uncommon for highly sensitive people to try and please everyone before considering pleasing themselves. If a highly sensitive child is always paying attention to what others are saying, the way people react can leave a relatively deeper impression on them. Seeing your child struggle with bouts of low self-esteem can be difficult, but with a little help, you can make a big improvement. 

It’s important to show positive encouragement and support for what your child truly is while accepting them for what they are not. If your child is a great soccer player, it’s important to support them. However, if he/she is constantly struggling with science class, you shouldn’t hold it against them. This constant stream of support and encouragement can provide the building blocks for much-improved self-esteem and overall happiness. 

Sensitive children need to express themselves and successfully master their favorite skill.  Perhaps your sensitive child is particularly talented at playing guitar or skateboarding. Whatever the case is, it’s your job to encourage your child to succeed at what they want and find happiness in doing so. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog