Everywhere I look, I see people distracting their kids from what they’re feeling.
You’re upset? Have a dummy, have some
milk, have a lollipop, look at this game on my phone…
(And I get it, I’ve done this many times too.)
But then we wonder why our kids are growing up with sugar, technology or other addictions that have them feeling numb to their emotions.
I don’t want to sound dramatic, but it’s so common and done so unconsciously that it’s become an epidemic in our society.
Distracting yourself and your kids from your feelings is having a HUGELY detrimental impact on your wellbeing.
It causes DISCONNECTION from your feelings.
“The opposite of addiction is not sobriety… the opposite of addiction is CONNECTION.” Johann Hari
So what I’m saying is, if this sense of disconnection from feelings is regular and ongoing, it will lead to addiction.
Not all addiction is to drugs and alcohol by the way.
Addiction can form with anything you use to fill that connection void.
Let’s have a look at how these could change as your child grows…
- Distracting your child from upset feelings with games/ cartoons on your phone now could mean that later in life they distract themselves from their feelings using things like video games, social media, tv etc
- Distracting your child from upset feelings with a dummy, bottle, breastfeeding, food or drink now could mean that later in life they distract themselves with food, sugar, alcohol, smoking etc
- Distracting your child from upset feelings with movement/ jiggling/ rocking now could mean that later in life they find it difficult to sit still and be present with their feelings and distract themselves with work, housework, exercise etc
These are just 3 examples. As I mentioned, addiction can form with anything, so there are many other possibilities.
My point is, especially in early childhood, it’s SO, SO important to reduce those distractions as much as possible and practise being present instead.
Can you identify any of the ways you distract your kids from their feelings? Were you aware of this before now? And how might it change things for you? 💫
If you have any questions or would like some support with this, I’d love to hear from you and help you unravel it all! You can take a look at my online programs or get in touch through my Facebook group and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.