Children and their opinions

When I was growing up children weren’t encouraged to have opinions. Today life is very different, as children from an early age are encouraged to form their own opinions and that’s something I welcome; but unless their opinions are aired in an appropriate way; their opinions could be inappropriately placed.

It takes years of practice to express opinions without offending anyone, with some adults getting it wrong even now. I have seen how others’ influences have an impact on the way children communicate. Stepping on someone’s toes with an opinion doesn’t make what we say right, what makes it right is the way in which we say it. When what we say belittles someone, then it’s time to rethink.

My mum was a stickler for telling us that unless we had something nice to say, we shouldn’t say anything at all and she was right. I spent a lot of my time observing as a child and although in my angry moments, I would answer back inappropriately, from my observations, I soon learned what was acceptable and what wasn’t.

I believe it’s a skill, which some children and adults don’t always use or get right. In many cases, it’s what we see around us and therefore makes it even more important that we learn how to communicate and to communicate well.

Without using this skill, we will always continue to struggle with our relationships and of course with each other.

5 Jan, 2013

2 thoughts on “Children and their opinions

  1. We should be careful with what we say. Children will speak what is on their minds and most of the time it’s true, plus they learn how to express themselves from their parents and others around them.

    If they observe their parents expressing themselves in inappropriate ways, the more likely the child will do the same. We should all practice what we preach when it comes to our children.

    If we want them to be tactful in expressing themselves so should we do the same.

    1. You’re right Lisa, children do learn a lot from their parents in terms of communication.

      I also agree that anyone with a positive influence in a child’s life should teach that child how to express themselves well and communicate. In some cultures, it’s not only also a sign of respect, but a sign that they’ve been taught and brought up properly.

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