Our parents are our guiding light. Loving them is the best gift we could ever give to them regardless of if we have a close relationship with them or not. Even if they’re not the best and perfect parents, we still need to respect them at all times and try to show our love despite their imperfections. Here are simple pieces of advice on how you can show your love to your mom and dad.
- Keep communication constant. Most relationships fail because of lack of constant communication. Don’t afraid to be open up to them. Consciously make an effort to include them in your life by sharing your thoughts, feelings, opinions, beliefs, hopes, dreams, and aspirations. Initiate conversations during meals, while watching TV and doing chores together. Make time within the day or over the weekend just for family bonding and talking about anything you want to talk about. Long distances or even busy lifestyles are not valid excuses to not stay in touch with your parents. If you live away from them, a simple phone call once in a while to ask them how they are wouldn’t hurt. Make use of technology—text them, send e-mails, write letters and mail greeting cards. Simple things like these would make them feel good because you took the time and effort to connect with them.
- Give respect and you’ll earn it too. It is true that if you treat a person with respect, you’re more likely to be treated with respect too. Arguments, fights, and conflict situations are normal in a parent and child relationship. But that doesn’t mean you have the right to yell at and insult your parents. Restrain yourself and maintain control of the situation. Always explain your side clearly and calmly. Wait for them to respond and hear their side as well. Do not resort to violence or hurtful words. Do not be rude. If you promise them something, be true to your word. Respect their opinions and beliefs. Try to understand where they’re coming from because they are parents and as cliché as it may sound, they do want what’s best for us.
- Take a keen interest in their lives and their well-being. Get to know your mom and dad better. Ask questions about what their lives were like when they were younger or before they had you. Know their goals, dreams, hopes, interests, likes and dislikes. You would be surprised at the wealth of information and insight you’ll gain when you continue to learn something new about them. Also take note of their dispositions, quirks, pet peeves, all the particulars and small details that make up who they are. Be concerned about their overall health and well-being. Take a proactive stance and help them live a healthier lifestyle.
- Do what they tell you to do. Take note of advice that they give you. Observe simple reminders and requests like clean your room, take out the garbage, take your vitamins, and look after your sister. Even if you don’t feel like it, do what you can. Be responsible and do your share in the family. When your parents see how responsible and capable you can be, they will trust you more.
- Always make way for understanding and forgiveness. Even parents make mistakes. When there is conflict and tension between you and your parents, better face the situation head on, talk about it, and attempt to smooth things out as soon as possible. If it’s something more serious and complicated, do not close your heart to your parents once they do you wrong. Make way for understanding and forgiveness when you are ready.
- Focus on their good points and praise them for it. Parents, like children, also need affirmation on whatever it is that they do right. Do not deprive your parents of affirmation and praise them for the good things they’ve done for you and the family. Tell them how grateful you are for the comfortable lifestyle you’re living, for a good education, and for being provided with all the things you need. Tell them how you appreciate certain qualities and habits they have that have influenced you positively.
- Tell them in simple ways that you love and appreciate them. Sometimes the hardest part for others is the part where you tell your parents that you love them. Saying I love you may feel awkward for some who aren’t used to it, but you can start with simple things first like leaving random notes with “I love you, mom and dad”. Follow it up with something more personal and meaningful like “Thank you for making me breakfast/for taking care of me/for trusting me/for giving me enough allowance”, etc. Start saying I love you with the little things you appreciate about them and eventually, you would gain more confidence in telling them how much you love them.
Without parents, we would be lost. Each day with them is a blessing. Let your mom and dad know how important they are through your actions and words.