Quality and Quantity Time
By: Rabbi Yakov Horowitz
We at Project YES have found that holidays, joyous as they are, often are a high-risk time for child abuse, as children are generally in a less structured environment and are in the company of a far greater pool of “new” adults and teens. We very strongly encourage you to give your kids a child safety refresher before Chanukah.
Here are links to 3 free Project YES “Safety-On-The-Fly” videos, each of which is less than 5 minutes running time and will empower you to have these critical conversations with your kids.
We hope you find them helpful. Y.H.
This quirk in this year’s calendar – where Chanukah vacation for our school children in America coincides with Thanksgiving – affords parents an extraordinary opportunity to spend quality time with your kids in great quantity.
I write these lines encouraging you to take full advantage of this four-day block of time to “go off the grid,” and really bond with your children. And in our hyper-connected world, is so critically important that we do just that.
Time with you is the greatest self-esteem builder for your children, for it sends a message that your connection with them is so meaningful to you. It allows you to get to know your children — really know them — and helps build the trust, affection, and deep personal relationship that are all prerequisites to having them confide in you and seek your guidance when they need it later in life.
The saddest thing that I (sometimes/often) hear from at-risk teens when I encourage them to discuss their challenges with their parents, is: “My parents don’t really know me.”
Parents often make the mistake of thinking that they need to take their children on exotic vacations or to expensive venues for them to enjoy themselves. That is just not so. They don’t need your money; they need you.
One of the great ironies of life is that when our children grow through their teenage years and beyond, it is so challenging to get them to spend time with us. However, when they are younger and craving for our attention, we often are too busy, too preoccupied, too distracted and too unaware of how important to their emotional health our time with them is.
So turn off your smartphones, leave an automated reply on your email account(s) that you will have limited access until Monday morning, and give your kids the kind of Chanukah gift they will treasure for the rest of their lives.
Best wishes for an enjoyable, joyous and meaningful Chanukah.
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