How to Learn to Love a 7-year-old (When It Isn’t Easy)


Kids can be a hassle, some more than others, so how do you learn to love them despite the difficulties they incur? I know I sometimes get frustrated with these cute little buggers, but there are a lot of reasons to love them.

How can you learn to love your seven-year-old? Learning to love your 7-year-old is all about your willingness to connect to them and to treat them as their own person. You don’t need to care for their every need. Explore what they love, share what you do every day, and most of all, spend time with them. 

All relationships are founded on the concepts of communication and reciprocation. A relationship between a parent and a child is no different. Spend time with your 7-year-old so that the two of you can grow closer.

To Love, Learn

It’s simple really, you can’t love something that you don’t know. Think back to when you were stuck in the dating pool. The people you enjoyed spending time with were those that you got to know the best.

You can think of kids, in the same way, the more that you know about them the better you will be able to love them. 

No one likes awkward silences for prolonged periods of time. You need something to connect over to have a conversation about. 7 years is a long time.

Kids at this age are starting to come up with their own ideas and opinions about things so respect that. And listen to your children. 

As a child, I was a large reader and my parents would give me different suggestions on what to read and sometimes would even read what I was reading just so we could talk about it.

They were willing to make time for me, which showed me the child that they cared and allowed them to see past the mistake-ridden child I was. 

Time is the key here.

Imagine that you spent time with a child only when you needed to. Well, the time that you need to spend with a child is when they are about to get hurt, or when they are in trouble, as well as other mundane activities that are required for them to know you care about their well-being. 

The problem here is that all of those activities are negative. You start to see your 7-year-old as a drag on your day a waste of time, a problem child. However, this is only because you can only see the negative.

Add some positivity into the activities that the two of you do together. Have some fun with them, and you’ll start to find things that you love about your kid. 

That’s a lot of effort but that’s what’s important. Children need love and the more attention that you give them the more love that they feel and the more love you will have for them. 

How to Strengthen Your Relationship With a 7-Year-Old

The best way to strengthen the relationship between your 7-year-old and yourself is to respect their growth and independence. Avoid being the helicopter parent that has pre-kissed the bandages they are going to apply to every fall your 7-year-old takes.

Trust them and let them grow. 

In a parent-child relationship, there is a delicate balance that needs to be made between when to give your child attention and when not to give your child attention.

Too far into either extreme is negative. Too forceful and your children lose their independence or never learn that they had any, to begin with. 

Too much independence with leave the child neglected and wanting you. Striking this balance is different with each child, but between what you observe from your child and what you gather through conversations with your child you’ll soon be able to see what is too much or not enough. 

Just be aware that you have to be willing to either step in or back off if need be. It can be helpful if you build a routine for your child, such as times when they know they will be able to interact, and times when they can’t.

In my own home as a child, my brother’s and I were given different bedtimes based on age and we knew from the time Dad got home from work until when we had to go to bed was time that we could use to play with him.

Are Dad was then the enforcer of who he would play with, most likely it was those who had to go to bed first, but sometimes we would all play together, or if someone wasn’t interested in playing with Dad then you could.

Since we knew when Dad would be home and knew that he was willing to play with us, we were able to setup what we wanted to do ahead of time. 

This routine kept us prepared and imaginative while allowing us to focus on other things as kids. For instance when it was another brother’s turn to play with Dad the rest of us could be working on homework or doing our household chores. 

Because of the routine, our father was able to easily balance when he could and couldn’t spend time with us. It helped to have other children as a reason for why we couldn’t play during certain times, but this can be supplemented by asking to spend time with your spouse or spend time by yourself.

Either way, have times when your children are aware they can spend time with you and have fun, and times where they have to get work done.

How to Properly Communicate With a 7-Year-Old

Maybe you understand that communication is key but you just can’t seem to pull it off in the moment. Here are a couple of ways to help you with communicating to your 7-year-old.

Have Conversations Frequently

If you are going to try then you need to try often. It may be difficult at times to talk to your children but don’t let that stop you. If it does stop you, then you have failed already.

Keep the conversations short at first. They can be about whatever topic seems appropriate. That could be the latest movie that you have seen with or a fun new story they have to tell.

The more often that this outlet of conversation exists for your 7-year-old to capitalize on, the more likely these conversations will be able to extend into more personal matters.

At first, you may be talking about nothing but fantasies and fictional worlds, but that can lead to real-world problems and emotions that your child is struggling with. 

The more frequently you are able to have these conversations the better you will get at them. Like anything talking requires practice. It may be rough at first for both of you, but that’s alright so long as you are trying you will get better. 

Actively Listen More Than You Talk 

I think we all have had that moment in a conversation before, where we are so focused on forming the perfect response to what is being said that we don’t really hear what the person is saying.

That’s frustrating for anybody, but for a child, it can seem even more so. 7-year-olds are right at the cusp of reaching their own personalities and decision-making capabilities. 

As such having someone listen to their thoughts and opinions is important to their development. So listen more than you are preparing to talk. This is a general conversation tip but the more that you listen to the other speaker the better your response can be.

We are naturally good at speaking and carrying out a conversation so allow yourself to listen intently and your mind will come up with the appropriate response. 

Finally, by listening in a conversation you are setting an example to your 7-year-old about how a conversation should be successfully held. This can help with their patience and tolerance in other conversations.

The most beneficial conversations I have had have been with those who can truly listen. You feel cared for and loved through the whole ordeal.

It even strengthens the arguments you are making in those conversations.

As a parent you want your child to be articulate and have something to add to these conversations, so help them out and listen to them. Then respond to them logically and soundly.

Face Emotions Head-on

As parents, we want to be the foundational rock upon which our children can stand, which is why it can so often seem counterintuitive to share our emotions with our children. 

Emotions are seen by many as a sign of weakness or a lack of control by many. And in some people, this can be true, but if we were to never address these emotions we are teaching our children to do the same.

Emotions, while often powerful and confusing, can lead to some of the greatest learning experiences in your life.

If you leave emotions unchecked you’ll never be able to truly understand why you act the way you do in certain situations. Overall it is difficult to face your emotions but you are teaching your child how to live their life here.

So be willing to face those emotions that you feel. Face the emotions that your 7-year-old is feeling as well. 

The more open you can be about each of your emotions the better of you will be later on in life when they are facing large emotional issues that come in the teenage and early adult stages of life.

Share your emotions so that your children can connect to you and better understand that they are like you. And like you, they will be able to face these emotions. 

Share Your Interests And Find Theirs

At 7 your just starting to become your own individual. At this time you start to identify things that you like and that you don’t like. These are the first steps toward developing your identity.  As such being seven is an incredibly important time to discover more about yourself. 

Being a parent to a 7-year-old you will want to ease this process as much as possible. And the first and easiest way that you can do this is by explaining what it is that you do.

My Grammar teacher in college once described her daughter coloring but instead of drawing normal stick figures they were scribbled sentence diagrams. Something that my Grammar teacher worked with frequently.

We have a strong impact on our children. What they observe of us can often influence what they will become later in their lives, so don’t hide what it is that you like or what it is that you do.

I grew up and studied English in college because my father was a natural wordsmith and my mother a nearly uncontrollable fount of creativity. 

We all bonded as a family over imaginary worlds and that’s what I decided to study throughout college. For your kids, it can be similar. Explain to them what it is that you like about where you work, and even what you dislike about it.

These can serve as life-long lessons that can guide your children to success. 

Further than just what you like to do and are able to do find out what your 7-year-old is good at and what they like to do. Sometimes it can be surprising to see what your seven-year-old likes.

Likely, they will enjoy playing more than they enjoy doing school work and chores. But find out what they like most about school. 

Then you can try to exercise and use these passions. If your child likes spelling, then help them out with their spelling homework. Spend a little more time focused on the things that they like to do.

As they are able to further dive into these subjects they’ll be able to see if they actually care for these subject or if it just a phase that they are going through. It’s perfectly fine for them to change their mind.

Just let them explore as far as they can so that start to see what matters the most to them and where their natural talents lie.  The more that the two of you are able to explore the further your child’s options will be. 

Ways to Spend Time With Your 7-Year-Old

Maybe you don’t know what to play with your kids, or maybe you are tired of playing the same old games over and over again here are some options to spend some time with your 7-year-old.

Tell a story

A bedtime classic in my household. We always had the option of being told a story. Sometimes those stories were made up by myself and whichever parent or grandparent was telling that story. Otherwise, there were plenty of children’s books that loaded the shelves of our home.

Whichever version of a story was told that night it was always fun for my parents to be involved in stretching my imagination. For your kids make sure that you are able to find the right stories for them.

Maybe the classic fairy tales don’t work for your kids, try Greek myths. If Greek myths aren’t doing it then maybe find some science fiction adventure for kids. 

The Children’s book department is filled with thousands upon thousands of titles utilize your local library. There’s likely something that your children will enjoy amongst all those books. 

  Play a table-top game

Table-top games are board games, card games, etc. 7-year-olds don’t have the largest attention spans but this will increase the more and more they play games. There are plenty of games out there that are quick and easy. Use these as a jumping off point for larger game later on.

There are a lot of lessons that can be learned from table-top games. Whether it is the simple lesson of being patient for when it is your turn to learning how to best manage the resources of the game you can get your children to learn a lot all under the guise of playing. It is an ingenious way to spend time with your kids. 

One of the other benefits of playing games is the multiple people that can play them. So long as your 7-year-old has built up the patience to play the game, you can have multiple people playing at once which can allow for distracting a whole group of kids while someone else is doing something a little more important. 

Singing and Dancing

Some of the greatest family moments revolve around the communal singing of a song. Or the crazy dances of little children. It is important to share what you love with your children, and that extends to music. Share what you love and allow your children to sing along with your favorite tunes.

This can be extended further into getting musical instruments for your children. Just keep in mind that musical instruments should probably be kept away if there are being used to frequently. They can be pretty beautiful but also pretty noisy. 

Related Questions

How do I get my 7-year-old to act more mature? Responsibility is the key to maturity. Give your child more responsibility by setting goals for them to reach. Don’t praise failure and do praise a job well done. Make sure that your child is seeing what is right and what is wrong. That way they know how to improve. 

How can I get my children to love each other? To get your kids to care for each other you should point out the qualities that you appreciate about both children. Try to provide family opportunities for them to hang out together. Discipline inappropriate behavior and praise time spent together.

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