Updated: Apr 9, 2021
We love our children. Of course, we do. We care for them, comfort them, feed them, put them to sleep and aaaaaallllll the other things we do to make sure they are safe, clean, fed and happy. These are all actions of love. But it is just as important to tell children you love them.
The same way you tell people in your life that you love them on the phone or when you see them, children need to hear and understand your feelings too. They instinctively love you unconditionally. If it was up to them, you would stay with them all day, all night, forever, until the end of time. Not to say you haven’t earned that appreciation - you’re doing amazing, sweetie.
Saying “I love you” begins to introduce the complex meaning of love. And soon, when they begin to understand more complex concepts like this, they will also learn that when we love someone or something, we care for them. Accordingly, we treat them lovingly, handle them gently, support them and apologize when we hurt them. This is the beginning of modeling human relationships for them, which is so determinant of how successful and fulfilled they will be when they grow up.
The world, as we know, is always in need of more compassion and you have a precious opportunity to grow it in your child. So a simple “I love you” at random times during the day (and not only when they’re extra cuddly or picking up their toys) is actually the beginning of teaching your child the beautiful process of becoming a loving and caring human being.