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7 Ways to Help Your Child Deal With Disappointment

Life is full of some pretty awesome things. As parents, we get to experience life all over again through the eyes of our kids. We watch them try and see new things for the first time.

There’s another side to this too. We also have to watch our kids go through the harder and sad parts of life as well. Recently, I’ve watched my children experience and express grief for the first time. In less than 2 weeks, our two cats passed away and they’ve been around for my kids entire life. It’s hard to watch the tears fall as they talk about missing them and holding them in their hearts. As a mom, all I want to do is take the pain away, but it’s not possible.

There are going to be many more moments where I want to shield my children  but the best I can do is help ease them through the sad times. As they grow, they’re bound to experience more grief, heartbreak and disappointment — it’s inevitable. There are some ways to help kids deal with disappointment and come through it better on the other side.

Check out these 7 ways you can help your child deal with disappointment and be a better person for it in the end:

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  • Coping With Disappointment 1 of 8
    Coping With Disappointment
    It's not fun, but it is inevitable. There are some ways to help your child deal with disappointment
  • Watch What You Say 2 of 8
    Watch What You Say
    Try not to down-play what they're feeling or put down their disappointment. Watch that you don't say things like, "That's life" or "Not everything is perfect" -- it may make your child feel worse and misunderstood.
  • Give Them Space 3 of 8
    Give Them Space
    Kids need space to process what they're thinking -- it may not be as easy for them. Especially important for the introvert child who doesn't like to be hounded right away. Let them have a little space.
  • Offer a Hug and an Ear 4 of 8
    Offer a Hug and an Ear
    It's important that you empathize with them and match the emotion they're showing. Don't downplay it and don't make it a bigger deal with them. Let them talk it out with you and give them a hug.
  • Reassure Them 5 of 8
    Reassure Them
    Give them the assurance that in time, things will be okay. Remind them of another time they were disappointed and things worked out fine or share a story of your own.
  • Watch How You Deal 6 of 8
    Watch How You Deal
    Kids are big mimic learners and even when you don't think they're watching, they are. Watch how you deal with disappointment yourself and try to model a more positive way of handling it.
  • Readjust Expectations 7 of 8
    Readjust Expectations
    Listen to what they're upset about -- if they got a B on a test or lost the baseball game -- talk about how they did they best the could and tried their hardest. Remind them of the positive things about the test (that a B is amazing) or that amazing catch they had in baseball.
  • Focus on the Lesson 8 of 8
    Focus on the Lesson
    There is so much to be learned through disappointment. Talk to your child about what they would have done differently, what they learned and focus on making it better in the future.

Photo credits: photostock

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