By the time a child starts school, his or her distinct temperament becomes more apparent. Every child has a unique way of feeling, thinking, and interacting with others. Some children are shy, while others are outgoing. Some are active, while others are calm. Some are fretful, while others are easygoing. Each family is composed of individuals who have their own distinct temperaments.
Be careful not to dismiss your child's feelings because they don't match your expectations. For example, if you are outgoing and active, it may be hard for you to understand your child's shy behavior. Pushing your toddler into uncomfortable situations can erode rather than build his or her self-confidence.
Accept and celebrate your child's uniqueness. Remember that your child is an individual. Although you can influence behavior to some degree, temperament is mostly inherited and typically a parent has little control over it. Allow your child to have his or her own personal preferences and feelings. And know these may be different from your own.
Other Works Consulted
American Academy of Pediatrics (2003, updated 2012). How to understand your child's temperament. Available online: http://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/gradeschool/Pages/How-to-Understand-Your-Childs-Temperament.aspx.
Current as of:
February 10, 2021
Author: Healthwise StaffMedical Review: Susan C. Kim MD - PediatricsKathleen Romito MD - Family MedicineLouis Pellegrino MD - Developmental Pediatrics
Current as of: February 10, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Susan C. Kim MD - Pediatrics & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & Louis Pellegrino MD - Developmental Pediatrics
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2021 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.