Hi ya’ll! As our daughters get older it can be a struggle to keep that mother-daughter bond strong. Their personalities and interests change. They also become moody and sassy. And spending time with your daughter can leave you wanting to pull your hair out!
As a toddler your baby girl looked up to you, wanted to be like you. She copied your every move, wore your shoes, and snuggled in close. But now she thinks she knows more, has better fashion sense, and wants to be left alone. So how can you get back to that bond you shared when she was a toddler? Below are 6 secrets to improve your mother-daughter bond. Your relationship may not drastically change overnight, but I promise with time and devotion you will strengthen that bond you share!
6 secrets to improve your mother-daughter bond
1: Make an effort
I believe this is the hardest part to improving a mother-daughter relationship. Because we get so busy with our daily routines and schedules that “relationship building” gets pushed to the back burner.
You may feel like you have nothing in common and you don’t understand her interests, but that’s ok! Making an effort will show that you care. Then with time and communication you will find common ground, as well as understand who she has become.
Communication is key to improving your mother-daughter relationship! Without it you will never fully understand her mind or see her heart. Sometimes we have this persona of what our daughter is because of what she used to be. But people change over time. So if you don’t keep that line of communication open with your daughter, she will soon become a complete stranger.
How To Keep The Line Of Communication Open
- Ask her EVERY DAY how her day was, then give her your undivided attention while she tells you
- Play the game “20 questions”
- Research her interests so you can relate with her
- Shares stories from your childhood to encourage her
- Don’t judge! (This will turn her away. Use words that will help her through the situation and learn from her mistake.)
- Make your talk sessions about her. Once the bond strengthens she will also start asking about you. (This is a great way to teach selflessness.)
3: Spend time with your daughter
My daughter is worth more than gold to me. (I’m sure you can relate.) But how will she know that if I don’t show her? As moms we are pulled in a million directions and it can be hard to carve out actual “girl time”. But spending time with our daughter doesn’t have to be extravagant or expensive, just deliberate. Show her that you truly admire, love, and respect her. Sometimes our full attention is all she is craving.
“Girl Time” Ideas:
- Take her to dinner
- Play Barbies or board games
- Color a picture
- Teach her to sew or cook (Check out this kids guid to sewing book for beginners)
- Go for a walk or bike ride
- Plant flowers or a garden
- Create your own special playlist
- Visit the library or read books at home
- Go shopping or get a haircut together
- Build a fairy garden
- Bake cookies
The smallest moments can make the biggest impact on a little girls life. So think back to when you were little…what did your mom do with you that you enjoyed? Also think about what your mom did that you didn’t like (the way she spoke, acted, etc.). Then try to improve those areas with your daughter.
4: Forgive and forget
There will be many times during motherhood that this step will save your sanity. Children are going to make mistakes and say hurtful things. But this is where we need to be strong, think before we speak, and be the example.
Step #1: Handle Every Situation With Love, Not Anger
There will be times when your daughter is not your biggest fan, and she will probably be quick to let you know that. But you have to remember that she doesn’t actually mean it. (We are all guilty of saying things out of anger.) However, you do need to address that issue with her. Encourage her to think before she speaks so she doesn’t regret her words later on.
Step #2: Forget That Situation Ever Happened
Once the situation is handled, apologies have been made, and discipline is complete you should never bring it up again. (Forgive and Forget.) This way she will know that she is truly forgiven and you love her unconditionally.
No one likes to be reminded of past mistakes. And quite honestly it could cause the argument or situation to reoccur, and in my experience it is always worse the second time. So my suggestion is to truly leave it in the past and focus on a better path for the future.
5: Show respect to receive respect
In order for your daughter to respect you, you must first show her some respect. Yes, it is easy to pull the “mom card” to assert authority. But sometimes we can actually get further by backing off and respecting her space. I have found in heated situations that sometimes it is better for me and my daughter to go to separate rooms and calm down. Then meet back up in a few minutes to talk it through. However, do not back off so much that she thinks she is the one in control. There still needs to be boundaries and fine lines.
Another way to show her respect is by embracing her uniqueness.
Moms, it’s natural to want a little princess. But if your daughter is more interested in sweatpants and sports, don’t force her to become something she is not. However, I am not saying to let her go against your guidelines and beliefs. Simply allow her to express her uniqueness within your family’s moral parameters. All in all, if you respect her heart, she will respect yours.
6: Encourage don’t criticize
Last but not least, be her biggest fan! Never make her feel small or unworthy. If she misses a problem on a test don’t yell and show disappointment. Instead encourage her to learn the correct answer and to do better next time.
As a child my self esteem was low. Not because of my parents, but because I was super hard on myself. My daughter is the same way; she is her own worst critic. It is hard as a parent to get her out of that mindset, but I have found that encouraging her works better than telling her why she shouldn’t think that way.
Encouragement is an extremely powerful tool for parents. It can get your child through some tough situations. It can also make your child feel special and loved. As well as, boost their confidence and prepare them for future problems and situations. In my opinion, ENCOURAGEMENT is the glue that holds all of these steps together!
If these 6 secrets to improve your mother-daughter bond worked for you I would love to know! Please leave a comment below!
Feel free to share your suggestions as well. A mother-daughter bond is a lifelong journey, there will always be room for improvement!