In our section «Ask an expert a question», reader Christina asks:
«With our daughter (she is 6 years old) it’s already impossible to say a word. Everything is immediately passed on to educators and children in kindergarten, grandparents. How to explain to a child that not everything can be told to other people?»
The reason for children’s frankness is the desire to attract attention to themselves and the lack of any concept of etiquette. When children are among adults, their words are most often ignored, but when they report something like that, all attention automatically switches to them.
Talkativeness is characteristic of children up to 7-8 years old. Up to a certain age (about 5-6 years old) there is practically nothing you can do about it (children just can’t control what they say).
Open, extroverted children are especially eager to reveal all family secrets. Small introverts tend to do this to a lesser extent, since their own inner world interests them much more than the external reality.
It is only closer to adolescence that children truly acquire the ability to keep other people’s secrets and secrets.
What should parents do if a child tells family secrets
Do not discuss in the presence of young children any serious things concerning business, wages and personal life. Even if the child does not understand anything, after a while, he can just automatically, like a talking parrot, reproduce them somewhere in a public place.
Do not punish or scold the child for giving you away. It is absolutely impossible to do this!
The child needs to be shown an appropriate positive example. If you tell everyone else’s secrets yourself, it is unlikely that your baby will behave in any other way. You do not need to tell someone from outsiders any details of your child’s home life, no matter how funny they may be (or first ask him for permission to disclose such information).
The child must distinguish between bad and good secrets. So, a good secret can be: a surprise for a brother (sister, grandmother), a gift for mom, a child’s treasures (remember the secrets in the ground), secrets between children (exceptions are secrets that are of the nature of causing harm to health).
Remember that the secret that you entrusted to the child should be short-lived. It is still difficult for him to withstand long-term stress, even if it is of a positive nature.