I recently watched a podcast aired on YouTube in which the interviewee was discussing the dynamic of their relationship. They said in order to see how their relationship was, they had their partner rate it on a scale from 1-10. I liked that and thought I could use that in my parenting relationship as well.
So a few weeks ago we implemented this during our Sunday family lunch. We went around the table and my daughter rated her relationship on a scale of 1-10 with me and the same with my husband. We then rated our relationship with her as well as our relationship with each other. In order to do this effectively in a way that creates a comfortable environment to share scores and feelings freely you want to follow these steps-
- Ask your child to rate your relationship on a scale from 1-10.
- No matter what score you get, say “thank you for your honesty”.
- If the number is less than 10, ask them what they need from you to take it up (for example, either from a 6 to a 7 or from a 6 to a 10 however you’d like to approach it). If the number is a 10, ask what you can do to maintain it.
- Thank them for sharing and let them know you’ll keep that in mind and work on it.
- Repeat this process with you sharing the score you give the relationship with your child. Be sure to be gentle with the delivery of your message of what your child can do to boost or maintain the score you’ve given.
- Check in on your relationship score regularly. You can do it weekly, every other week, once a month, or whatever seems reasonable to you.
Please note there’s no rebuttal. Don’t get offended by what they share and don’t shame them. Allow them to share their feelings openly so they continue to share honestly otherwise you risk them shutting down or telling you what they think you want to hear.
We’ve only done this twice so far but the results have been amazing. My daughter has reminded herself of what we shared she could do to improve the relationship score. Once I share what I need, I don’t hang it over her head or remind her. She’s eight years old and she can remember what I shared with her. There’s no guilting or shaming and she feels like she’s in control of the influencing factor to boost or maintain her score. It’s not competitive but more of a gauge. As a parent, it was nice to hear her share her thoughts and feelings of what works well and what she wants more of in our relationship.
Do you think this is a good idea? Do you already do this? I’d love to hear your thoughts on gauging the relationship your children have with you and vice versa. If you have requests for future parenting posts, feel free to share in the comments.