Y Magazine

How to help kids deal with rejection

From minor setbacks to major life events disappointments are part of growing up. Gayathri Das tells us how parents could help kids bounce back.



As a family it’s the parents’ responsibility to help children handle disappointments at an early stage. This is something which cannot be taught but learnt. They need to come up with their coping skills. Often parents rush into situations to not let their child feel bad. That is a wrong move. Let them be in that understanding or feeling. Support them to overcome it rather than not letting them face it at all.

Understand what it will take for the child to put the situation in place or help them to take corrective steps so that next time they will be able to handle it on their own. We should not go into sympathy mode. Instead get into empathy mode where you talk to them and understand their situation. Ask them what they are feeling. When kids are hurt, and they won’t open up and talk to you, make sure you don’t start advising. Instead listen patiently to them without interrupting.

Make them feel comfortable with a pat on the back or a kiss. Discuss later when they are in good mood. But if they are crying or low defocus them from that situation. You can tell them stories of how you handled your situations alone — this could encourage them to handle the situation on their own, making you the role model.