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As a Dutch child psychologist who works with households in the Netherlands, I’ve noticed a variety of different parenting styles throughout many cultures.
While every strategy has its advantages, Dutch kids are persistently ranked as the happiest in the world. This had me desirous about we do in a different way right here to elevate happier and extra resilient youngsters.
Based on my analysis as a psychologist and expertise elevating two younger daughters, listed here are six things Dutch parents never do:
There is a enormous biking tradition right here, and it begins early. As quickly as a child can sit up, they’re fixed to the entrance of a mum or dad’s bike and cycled round in any sort of climate.
Biking by the storm — in correct rain gear, in fact — teaches children that it doesn’t matter what type of obstacles they face in their lives, they will give you the chance to get by it.
It additionally teaches independence. By the time most children are 9 or 10, many parents belief them to bike to college on their very own or to their associates’ homes. This freedom and belief helps younger individuals become autonomous, self-sufficient and assured adults.
It’s quite common to see Dutch children run free on the playground with out an excessive amount of supervision.
An expat mum or dad advised me as soon as how shocked they had been once they went to a Dutch playground for the first time. All the parents had been sitting on a bench, calmly chatting amongst themselves, whereas their children had been climbing, operating and falling throughout the place.
But Dutch youngsters are inspired from a younger age to discover their environment, to imagine in themselves and to mud themselves off once they fall.
One of the largest causes Dutch individuals are so joyful is that they worth work-life steadiness.
A 2021 research discovered that just about half the workforce in the Netherlands had part-time jobs. Dutch fathers additionally take a minimum of sooner or later off every week (their “Papaday”) to spend with their youngsters.
Having that devoted time at home means extra room for actions for the youngsters, like playdates, golf equipment and sports activities, or additional down time to spend with parents.
Dutch parents make a level to have a minimum of one meal collectively on daily basis. It’s a time for members of the family to join and discuss their day.
Feeling related improves the psychological well being of all members of the family and contributes to happier, extra emotionally balanced youngsters. And it would not damage that chocolate sprinkles (“hagelslag”) on bread is a standard breakfast choice in the Netherlands.
From the second their youngsters are born, Dutch parents are suggested to present “rust, reinheid, regelmaat,” which roughly interprets to “relaxation, cleanliness, and construction.”
Dutch youngsters are persistently given a clear day by day schedule that permits for loads of naps for the little ones and prioritizes stability.
For youngsters to flourish, they want construction, predictability, relaxation and hygiene. It helps them really feel protected and comfy exploring the unknown. This type of extra authoritative parenting is commonly linked to optimistic child improvement.
Dutch parents need to make their children really feel each seen and heard. They contain their youngsters in the decision-making course of as quickly as they will perceive language and talk.
This manner, children study to negotiate and set their private boundaries from a younger age. When we ask for our kids’s opinions and really pay attention to them, they will be extra seemingly to develop a sense of optimistic self-worth.
Dutch parents additionally do not draw back from discussing uncomfortable matters like intercourse, medicine and gender. We perceive that accepting our kids for who they honestly are is all they really want to develop into assured, joyful and balanced adults.
Veronique van der Kleij is a child and college psychologist primarily based in the Netherlands. For 10 years, she has labored each in psychological well being care and at The International School of the Hague with youngsters, adolescents and their households. She specializes in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Follow her on LinkedIn.
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