Don’t Tease Your Child – It May Be More Hurtful Than You Think

We may think that the well intentioned teasing that we as parents mete out to our children is just gentle ribbing and after all we are their parents and are hardly likely to be deliberately mean and hurtful to our children; but we may be wrong.

Teasing can take on many different forms and this post underlines why parents teasing their children is a bad idea.

According to Michael Thompson in his book, Best Friends, Worst Enemies: Understanding the Social Lives of Children, it may be tempting for parents (in particular fathers) to tease a child about the social stresses in their lives, however advises against it.

The pain that a child feels due to their particular situation may be very real though a parent may not think of it as being such a bad deal or cause for so much angst. That teasing only goes to make a child feel more alone at time he or she is striving for social acceptance or liking.

A parent may think that a little teasing will help inject humor in the situation and make the child see things in perspective but it can actually make the child lose trust and respect in a parent. So don’t tease, be compassionate with your child instead, Thompson advises.

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