How Do I Get My 10-year-old Son to Accept My Boyfriend?

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So this is a little bit complex because he probably feels, if you were a parent, um, if you were to write down, and here's my suggestion to you. I want you to put yourself into your child's shoes. Now, this isn't easy, but I want you to imagine that you're your 10-year-old. I want you to think about his fears. I want you to think about his concerns. I want you to feel, just feel what it's like being him, this new person in your life while you are feeling excitement and hope. My guess is he's probably feeling, or your 10 year old's feeling like they're being replaced, that you're not gonna love them anymore. Now, I might be wrong with that, but the question you really wanna ask is, what is my child experiencing? And then it's not just enough to write it down. I'm talking about mental preparation. How would I communicate with my 10-year-old and say, Hey, I'm curious with this new person in our lives. What are some of your biggest concerns? Or what are some of your biggest fears? I was thinking about it and I wondered if you felt this way, am I off? I was wondering if you felt that way. Am I off? And see what you're doing is you're actually having empathy, trying to put yourself into your child's shoes, which is a really healthy thing to do as a parent. So think about your child. Think about their needs, think about their concerns, write it down and talk with them. You love your child, your 10-year-old, probably more than anything. That's why you're here. That's why you're asking. So letting your 10-year-old know you're not going away. If anything, you want to enhance their life by having a person in their life that can care for them. Now, really important here.This new person in your life needs to know their role is not to parent. Their role is to create a safe environment for your 10-year-old. The moment your boyfriend starts to take on a role of a dad, by correcting the child, the child will turn away. Your job is, as the primary caregiver is to discipline, not your boyfriend. If you want to turn your child away from them, they come in and they step in. The only way that a child responds to that is they, they feel trust first. They feel safe with your boyfriend. That's the paramount thing that you need to do with your child. You need to create safety. You are doing that empathic part of it. I suggested earlier your boyfriend understands his role is to sit back and let you do the disciplining. He might not like it, but that's his role. If he does it prematurely, you can actually lose respect from your child. And then you have conflict between choosing your son or your daughter, your 10-year-old, and your boyfriend.

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Dr. Kevin Skinner