Getting your child to talk

Betsy Brown Braun, MA Parent Educator and best-selling Author, shares advice for parents on how to help your child open up and communicate with you
Parenting Tips | Getting Your Child To Open Up With You
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Getting your child to talk

You know, the problem in wanting to get your child to talk to you is what your expectations are. Children will talk to their parents when parents talk to their children. More often than not the talking that we do with our children is not, in fact, talking. We're talking at them. We're telling them what to do. We're giving them directions. We're bossing them around. But when we spend more time talking to our children, conversing, exchanging ideas, soliciting their opinions, even with a child as young as three years old, you're going to set a tone for talking and conversing. If you want your child to talk to you, I suggest you not ask him questions about his day. When he gets in the car after school, the best way to get him to talk is, Hi, hon. Let me tell you about my day. So, I went to the cleaner. There was a skunk outside the drugstore. I saw some squirrels in the yard. And sooner or later your child is going to say to you, well, don't you want to hear about my day? Another way you can get your child to communicate with you is not to talk to him, but listen to him. When parents show and interest in what chlldren are interested in, when parents take the time to really listen to what they/re saying, when you put down the Blackberry, when you turn away from your computer, when you stop doing what you're doing and really listen to your child, it's going to encourage him or her to want to talk to you even more. It's a tone you have to set up in your home. There will be plenty of communication. I promise.

Betsy Brown Braun, MA Parent Educator and best-selling Author, shares advice for parents on how to help your child open up and communicate with you


Expert Bio

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Betsy Brown Braun, MA

Parent Educator & Author

Betsy Brown Braun, best-selling author of both Just Tell Me What to Say: Sensible Tips and Scripts for Perplexed Parents and You’re Not The Boss Of Me: Brat-proofing Your Four To Twelve Year-Old, is a child development and behavior specialist, parent educator, multiple birth parenting consultant, and founder of Parenting Pathways, Inc.

With over 40 years of experience in public and private early childhood and elementary education, Betsy has directed and founded school programs, taught in both public and private schools, has been a school director, and was the founding director of Wilshire Boulevard Temple’s Early Childhood Center. She holds an MA in Human Development and teaching credentials from Pacific Oaks College.

In 2001 Betsy founded Parenting Pathways, Inc. to provide guidance to parents seeking the skills and confidence needed to negotiate the often-challenging parenting pathway. She leads parenting groups, seminars, and offers private parent consultations throughout the nation.

Her bestseller, Just Tell Me What To Say, in its fourth printing,presents the tried and true tools her clients use daily to handle situations that inevitably accompany raising children ages two to six and beyond. Her second book, and second bestseller, You’re Not The Boss Of Me: Brat-Proofing Your Kidsalso in its fourth printing, is the ultimate hands-on guide to cultivating character traits that are tried-and-true "bratbusters." 

Betsy brings her vast knowledge, sensitivity, and special brand of humor to her parent consultations, to her groups, and to her presentations.

Her parenting expertise has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, Cookie, Family Circle, Good Housekeeping, In Style, Parenting, Parents, Pregnancy and Newborn, Twins, Woman’s Day, and Working Mother, among other publications. She has shared her expertise on the Today Show multiple times. Other television appearances have included The Early Show, Good Morning America Now!, Fox & Friends, Rachel Ray, Dr. Phil,  The Talk, Entertainment Tonight, KCBS, KNBC, and Fox News LA. She contributes to KNX news radio on child development, and has been a guest on countless radio programs nationwide, including NPR. She writes for and has been cited in numerous websites and parenting blogs. Betsy is a frequent speaker at educational conferences, schools, and businesses.

Betsy and her husband Ray Braun are parents of adult triplets.

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