3 Reasons Why Some Parents Don't Play With Their Kids (& Why They Should!) by Dr. Tim Thayne
I remember talking to a mother one day who apologized for the disastrous state of her living room as the floor was covered with LEGOs. She said, “I didn’t clean today ... I spent it playing with my youngest instead.” I was shocked – and impressed.
Plato said, “You can learn more about someone in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” Good treatment programs know how vital play is in building relationships and seeing growth in young people. So why do we often find it to be a chore?
- It becomes foreign to us: As adults we get serious. We are weighed down with the responsibilities of career, caring for a home and providing for our family’s needs emotionally, academically, physically, spiritually and otherwise. To find time to relax and “mess around” takes awareness and effort. Those are two things we are usually lacking at the end of the day.
- We don’t feel fun: Our perception of ourselves becomes skewed. That guy is fun, I’m not. I have an injury and can’t move like I used to. When I try to joke my daughter takes it the wrong way. We may be struggling ourselves and haven’t laughed or played as an adult in so long, that we can’t remember what it’s like.
- We have grand expectations: Some believe play comes with a price tag. You don’t need a vacation or thrills to bring it into being. Fun can be free. It can be as simple as while taking a walk throwing down the challenge “First one to that mailbox wins.” Or after sharing a story over dinner, ending it with “Top that!” to invite bigger and better stories.
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