“I play with my 2 ½ year old daughter but I feel like I am missing something, our play does not help our relationship.”
Here is a great tool to help you connect with your child on a deeper level:
P.R.I.D.E. skills open up doors to increase relationship and control when you are interacting with your child on a daily basis. These PRIDE skills are a component of Parent–Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) which is a form of therapy developed by Sheila Eyberg for children ages 2–7 and their caregivers.
PRIDE is an acronym that stands for:
By using these five communication tools, the “something missing” is now filled. All of us need emotional connection and control (Maslow’s hierarchy of needs). So the PRIDE skills give an intense dose to both of these needs.
In my practice, I teach Love and Logic® skills. These tools work really well! But using PRIDE skills once a day for 5 minutes is delivers even more of choices and empathy benefits.
Here is a PRIDE parenting skills handout that outlines how to engage with PRIDE skills during play time. Be aware that the time stated on the handout (10-15 minutes per day) has changed. Research indicates that PRIDE play done for 5 minutes per day is enough to fill a child emotionally and it is do-able for parents.
Here is how you use the PRIDE skills:
1) Set up a play table.
2) Tell the child that this is “our special play time” and he/she may play with any of the toys on the table.
3) Next, apply the PRIDE skills to the play time.
4) When 5 minutes (or more if you want, but remember 5 minutes is enough) is over, tell your child that “special playtime is over, but you will play again tomorrow.” Then give a choice of how many toys to pick up. Be sure to not get into a power struggle over clean up.
5) The Don’ts are:
- No Questions
- No Commands
- No Criticism.
Questions and commands put you as dominate and this is a time that the child leads the play.
Next week, I will be posting a video with me demonstrating this type of play.
If you have a child over the age of 7 years, the PRIDE skills can also be used in normal interaction. I will show those in a video as well!