Early Stages of Parent-Child Relationship

Children develop very quickly in the 0-6 age period and almost gain many cognitive skills during this period. In fact, they develop faster than we imagine when it comes to emotions and communication.

According to research, babies; Around 4 months, they examine the changes around them with great curiosity and detect their emotional expressions and try to catch happy faces. At 5-7 months, they can understand the signals in the voice and notice if the face and voice do not match. If there is a mismatch in the environment, they do not feel safe. They can receive emotional signals from the body between 3-6 months and can communicate with each other with smiles and facial expressions around 6-9 months. They can decipher the intention of a behavior around 7 months, that is, they can make inferences such as “my mother goes to my father with a smile, so she will love my father”, “my sister and father are running towards me with a frown, she can hurt me”. All these detailed analyzes have a single purpose: “I am trying to understand what is going on in the world, I am looking for consistent behaviors to understand this complexity, learn and protect myself”.

Towards the end of the 1st year, the needs become more diverse. Especially the games are a little different. Remember the previous games, they are usually games that take place on or around the baby (like ce ee or my wife’s nose, mouth, etc.). However, around the age of 1.5, the game now moves to a third point on the parent and the child, that is, to the outside world. Towards the end of the age of 1, the child realizes that there is a world outside, and this time he wants the parent to see what he sees and react to it. There is a need to look at the “common point” that goes up to the upper levels. During this period, children feel safe thanks to the existence of the parent-child-object triangle, and they expect constant support until they are sure that this triangle is firmly established. Because everything in this world is so new and children aren’t even sure what they’re seeing yet. This new world is both very colorful and attractive, but also very large and unpredictable. A “knower” is needed to describe this world. In this new world, if the parent who will guide the child is looking at the things the child is looking at, the child can find his way. Otherwise it will probably be lost. Therefore, at the age of 2 and beyond, the need for parental “sticking” (in fact, trust seeking) and parental attention increases.

In all these developmental stages, parents need to pay attention to a few points. Emotions, which start before the age of 1 and are constantly recorded in the emotional repertoire with each event, are the first tool that children acquire to understand the world and protect themselves. This is exactly the mechanism called the 6th Sense, which is called “babies feel”. In this respect, parents should be as emotionally consistent and open as possible during infancy and beyond (especially in the 0-6 age period). This consistency and clarity does not mean that one should always be happy. If there is a distressing or tense situation in the environment, your child probably felt it before you did. That’s why your suggestion of “Nothing, everything is fine” will only increase his anxiety. What children need is a small description of the event and emotion, and then the confidence that you will resolve the situation. Believe me, not having to hide things will be good for all parents.

In this period when children realize the world, it is very beneficial for the parent-child-world relationship that their parents look at the same point and play games where they enjoy the same things. For example, reading a book and looking at the pictures together or a nature walk with your child and talking about the objects you see during this walk can be activities of this period. Having a healthy period during this period will increase the child’s adaptation to different environments in the future.

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