Mental health has immense impacts on all families, yet very few take it seriously. Little or no due regard is given to the moods, attitudes, insecurities, and general psychological well-being of family members with such conversations limited to friends. However, the state of a parent’s mental health has stark ramifications on a child’s upbringing.
How do Parents Affect Their Children’s Mental Health?
Mentally unwell parents find it very difficult to maintain a stable, fulfilling, and engaging relationship with their children. They might be unable to carry out simple chores like taking the child to the park or listening to their children rant. Similarly, when one or both parents are mentally unwell or stressed, there are higher chances of parents fighting which has adverse effects on the child’s mental health.
In the midst of this pandemic, the constant threat of coronavirus has worsened parents’ mental health. They remain highly stressed and worried due to economic and health concerns. Furthermore, working at home with schools shut off increases the risk of parent-child confrontations as well. In such trying times, children too are impacted by the coronavirus. Their school and extracurricular routines are disrupted with their bustling personalities confined to their homes.
Adoptive parents’ mental health also has stark effects on their children. Children can end up feeling unheard, unloved, and a source of burden especially since the link between adoptive parents and their children can be fragile.
How Can Parents Support Their Child’s Mental Health?
It is vital that the state and civil society invest resources in educating parents about mental health. Parents need to be taught how to deal with children with special needs, managing work-home balance, and providing children with stability in times of marital discord.
Furthermore, parents must be trained in identifying symptoms of mental disorders like OCD and depression. Once an issue is recognized and confirmed, parents must be highly adaptable and flexible in providing the utmost comfort and stability to their children.
Far too often, parents brush aside their children’s concerns and issues. Thus, it is imperative that children feel at ease discussing all their insecurities, fears, and troubles with their parents.