As an adult, I know that nothing could have made me have a more wholesome childhood than my mother raising me up to consider her my best friend. Yes, she was an authoritative figure when needed, but at the end of the day, she always made sure to balance between her role as my parent and our friendship which we have built over the years.

Now, I can see that my friends’ happiest, most outgoing and also most well brought up kids are the ones whose parents have built a bond of friendship with. So I have decided to compile the best tips on how to build a lasting friendship with your children:

Don’t just pretend to play with them, actually enjoy the game: 

So many adults turn off the fun aspect once they have children, which is quite ironic. Allow yourself to be a part of your child’s play. Don’t pretend to go along with their imagination, but actually take part in it. Let your inner child out and trust me, your kids will appreciate this on a whole other level.

Share personal stories and past experiences with them: 

When your kids come to you with a problem, let them know that their mum or dad actually made similar mistakes in the past. It’s totally okay to not appear idealistic to your kids. If anything, it will make you seem more relatable to0 them.

Listen more than you talk: 

Actively hear your kids out. Let them tell you about the details of their day or how they’re feeling. Ask questions to allow them to share even more thoughts with you. Let them be the center of the conversation. That will make them come to you first!

Allow for discussions and debates: 

I see so many parents these days not leaving room for any discussion with their kids to assert their authority. Whereas talking back is definitely not something you would want to allow your kids to do, you must build their individuality and strong character by allowing them to speak up. Encourage having open discussions in your household.

Get to know their friends:

You read that right, actually, try to know your kids’ friends better. Listen to them and maybe have a quick chat with them on the phone when they call to talk your kid.