ACKNOWLEDGE YOUR CHILD
That’s it! End of post.
Aw what the heck. I’ll say a little more about this since it’s super important.
This definition of acknowledge (below) contains all the clues a parent needs.
Do you know your child’s truth (what is important or real to them)? Or are you working so very hard to impose your own truth?
Do they know you see them as important in their own right?
Do you express yourself to them in a way that they know you see them for who they are as a person of equal stature–as a legitimate person?
When they talk to you, do you recognize they are talking and give them 100% of your attention until you understand what they are saying?
As a side note, I thought it was interesting that the word comes from a word leading back to “confess“. Probably involved something more torturous, knowing mankind’s history, but I’d like to believe that this has more to do with being open and real with our kids and treating them as large beings who just happen to have small bodies for the moment.
I think of how a person feels when they have confessed something that was previously held back and how that makes the other person feel. A calmness pervades the space when this level of transparency is in place and at that moment, the other person feels truly acknowledged.
Imagine a cheating husband. There’s withheld information the husband is not releasing. The wife suspects there is a problem but can’t put her finger on it. She knows something is wrong. The husband is doing the opposite of acknowledging his wife at this point, right? The wife feels this. She feels like a lesser person during this time (among other emotions I’m sure).
Finally, the husband confesses completely. While the wife may feel many things, she would at least feel like she is there–that she is important again–like a legitimate person.
That’s how I choose to resolve the etymology of this word.
The last bit, relating to war, is just me having some fun. 🙂
Full size image of wars graphic in case you’re curious about that kind of thing.