I gave birth to two girls who I am now in the process of raising to be women. If I do a good job, there will be two more smart, responsible productive women in the world. I feel like I have 18 years give or take a few to tell them everything I know about the world.
As babies I have to teach them simple things like to feed themselves, control their bladders, and use their legs and arms. As toddlers I must teach them to behave well, and treat others well. As they become children and teens the lessons get more complex, and there’s a lot to explain.
Do yourself a favor and set the stage early.
I don’t know about you but I HATE it when people talk to me like I am an idiot. I am not a brain surgeon but I do understand lots of things, and if you address me with compassion and respect I’ll be open to what you have to share with me. If you talk to me like you don’t respect my intelligence, I’ll either tune you out, or just limit my interactions with you. Amazingly, I know of people who talk to their children like they are idiots, and expect for them to listen to them and respect them.
Come on people. talk to your children the same way that you’d like to be addressed, if they don’t understand, explain it to them… respectfully. It set’s the tone for the level of discussion that you can expect out of them going forward, and helps them to know that you will be honest and respectful of their intelligence. Don’t dumb it down and don’t avoid their questions. Who knows, they’ll even return the favor when they become adults and start taking care of you.