Being a parent is hard. But when you understand the importance of play, it can help you connect with your child and teach them more about the world – and themselves – says Dr. Lawrence Cohen, author of Playful Parenting and The Art of Roughhousing. Watch Cohen talk about using play to forge strong bonds with your kids:
Play is incredibly important to how kids learn about the world and themselves, Cohen advises, and it’s value cannot be underestimated.
“It starts with connecting with your child, and really the essence of parenting is forming a strong, close lasting connection with your child,” Cohen told genConnect. “There’s so much that comes from play.”
But understanding the emotional depths of children is a much harder tasks for parents – whether it be dealing with crying or other forms of emotional distress. How a parent reacts is extremely important. For example, one of the worst thing parents can do, he says, is respond in a way that shuts children down and makes their feelings feel unwelcome.
“[Parenting] is wonderful and it’s fulfilling,” Cohen said, “but it’s really hard.”
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