Being a parent is never an easy job, but for military families, the challenges can be even greater. With frequent moves and deployments, it can be difficult for parents to ensure that their children have the support they need to grow and thrive in their new homes. Fortunately, there are tools and techniques that military families can use to provide positive parenting experiences for their children. Read on to learn 11 essential tips on how to bring positivity into your family’s experience of military life!
As a military family, you face unique challenges that can make positive parenting more difficult. However, there are several things you can do to help ensure your children thrive despite the challenges.
Here are some basic guidelines on positive parenting for military families:
- Communicate openly with your children about the challenges of military life.
- Help your children develop a strong support system within the military community.
- Encourage your children to express their feelings and emotions openly.
- Make time for fun and bonding as a family, despite the challenges of military life.
- Seek out resources and support from organizations that specialize in supporting military families.
Tip 1: Keep Lines of Communication Open
The most important thing you can do for your children is to keep the lines of communication open. It is essential that you talk to your children about what is going on in their lives and how they are feeling. If you are deployed, make sure you stay in touch with your children through letters, emails, phone calls, and video chats. When you are home, take the time to really listen to your children and ask them about their day. Let them know that you are there for them and that you love them no matter what. This is one of the most important tip on positive parenting for military families.
Tip 2: Respect Your Child’s Feelings
When you are parenting a child, it is important to always respect their feelings. Comparing with other mainstream society, positive parenting is a daunting task for military families. Military families often have to move around a lot, which can be tough on kids. They may feel like they don’t belong or that they are always the new kid. It is important to listen to their concerns and help them adjust to their new surroundings.
Encourage your child to express their feelings and really listen to what they have to say. If they are feeling sad, angry, or scared, validate those emotions and let them know it is okay to feel that way. Help them find healthy ways to cope with their feelings such as talking to a trusted adult, writing in a journal, or participating in physical activity.
Let your child know that you understand how they feel and that you will support them through this transition. Thank them for being flexible and resilient during this time of change. Let them know that you are proud of them for handling everything so well.
Tip 3: Maintain a Consistent Schedule
Maintaining a consistent schedule is one of the most important things you can do for your children, especially if you are a military family. A consistent schedule gives children a sense of stability and predictability in their lives, which can be very helpful in times of stress.
Some tips for maintaining a consistent schedule:
– Wake up and go to bed at the same time every day
– Eat meals at regular times
– Have regular “quiet time” or “free time” each day
– Do homework at the same time each day
– Have regular family activities such as movie night or game night
Tip 4: Be Supportive and Don’t Overreact
One of the most important things that you can do for your military family is to be supportive. When your spouse or partner is away, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed and stressed out. It’s important to remember that your children are going through this as well. Try to be understanding and patient with them.
It’s also important not to overreact when your spouse or partner comes home. They may have been through a lot while they were away and need some time to readjust. Give them space if they need it and be there for them when they’re ready to talk.
Tip 5: Encourage Positive Thinking
It can be easy to get caught up in the negative aspects of military life – the long deployments, the constant moving, the separations from family and friends. But it’s important to remember that there are also many positive aspects to military life. Here are a few tips to help you encourage positive thinking in your family:
1. Talk about the good things that have happened during the day. This will help your children focus on the positive aspects of their day, rather than dwelling on the negative.
2. Help your children find things to be grateful for. It can be something as simple as a beautiful sunset or a good friend. Focusing on gratitude will help shift your child’s mindset from negative to positive.
3. Encourage your children to think about what they want, rather than what they don’t want. For example, if they’re feeling angry about a situation, encourage them to think about what would make them feel better.
4. Help your children problem-solve when they’re facing challenges. This will help them develop a more positive outlook and see challenges as opportunities for growth.
5. Encourage your children to express their feelings in healthy ways. This could include writing in a journal, talking to a trusted adult, or participating in physical activity (which has been shown to reduce stress and improve mood).
Tip 6: Maintain Flexibility
It’s important to have some flexibility when parenting a military child. There will be times when your child will need to be away from home, and you’ll need to be prepared for that. Try to maintain a positive attitude and be understanding of your child’s situation. Explain to them why it’s important for them to be flexible, and help them to see the positives in their situation.
Tip 7: Spend Quality Time Together
It can be challenging to find quality time to spend together as a family when you’re juggling work, school, and extracurricular activities. But it’s important to make the effort to connect with your spouse and kids. Here are a few ideas for how to make the most of your time together:
• Plan regular family outings or date nights. Whether it’s going out for ice cream or taking a hike together, quality time doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming.
• Play games together. Games are a great way to have fun and connect with your family.
• Get involved in your children’s hobbies and activities. Showing an interest in what they’re passionate about will help them feel valued and appreciated.
• Make time for conversation. Talk about your day, share your thoughts and feelings, and listen openly to what your family has to say. These conversations will help you all stay connected even when you’re apart.
Tip 8: Show Appreciation for Your Child’s Efforts
It can be easy to forget to show appreciation for what your children do when you’re busy with work and other responsibilities. However, it’s important to take the time to let your kids know that you notice and appreciate their efforts. This will help them feel good about themselves and encourage them to keep doing their best.
There are many ways to show appreciation for your child’s efforts. You can praise them verbally, give them hugs and kisses, or write them a note of thanks. You can also give them small tokens of appreciation, such as stickers or privileges. Whatever you do, make sure that your child knows that you are sincere in your appreciation.
Tip 9: Attend Parent Teachers Meetings in School
It can be difficult for military families to juggle work and family life, but it’s important to try to attend Parent Teacher Meetings (PTMs) at your child’s school. PTMs are a great way to stay up-to-date on your child’s progress and connect with their teachers. If you can’t attend in person, see if the school offers online or phone options.
Also, keep in touch with your child’s teachers throughout the year. Ask questions, offer to help out at school events or volunteer for activities that require extra adult supervision. This will help your child stay connected with the school and build relationships with their teachers even if you can’t attend in person.
Tip 10: Go Outdoor with Your Child
The tenth and final tip in our series on positive parenting for military families is to go outdoor with your child. Research has shown that time spent outdoors can have a positive impact on children’s mental and physical health. And what better way to bond with your child than by exploring the great outdoors together?
So get out there and enjoy some quality time with your little one – go for a nature walk, play in the park, or even just sit in the backyard and watch the clouds go by. Whatever you do, make sure to take advantage of those sunny days and fresh air – both you and your child will benefit from it!
Tip 11: Provide Broader Socialization Opportunities for your Child
It is essential to provide opportunities for your child to socialize with others, especially if you are a military family. There are many ways to do this, such as joining a playgroup or taking turns hosting playdates. You can also look into organizations like the Boys & Girls Club or the YMCA, which offer recreational and educational programs for children of all ages.
Another great way to socialize your child is to get involved in their school’s PTA or other parent groups. This will give you the chance to meet other parents and help plan fun activities for your child and their classmates. Getting involved in your child’s education is a great way to support them and ensure that they are getting the most out of their schooling.
Finally, don’t forget about extended family and friends! These people can provide valuable support and friendship for both you and your child. If possible, make an effort to stay in touch with them even when you are deployed or away on business trips. regular communication will help everyone feel connected and loved.
We hope that you have found our 11 essential tips on positive parenting for military families to be helpful in navigating the unique challenges faced by military families. As parents, we want to provide a strong and empowering foundation for our children’s growth and development, while also giving them the freedom to explore their own interests and passions. Positive parenting is all about striking this balance between providing guidance and support while allowing your child to discover who they are as individuals. With these tips in mind, we wish you all the best in creating a positive home environment for your family!