Apr 6 2015

Speaking WITH and Listening TO Our Children for a Change…

News Flash: Parents have no problem talking to kids. 

Are they listening? And by “they,” we really mean BOTH the parents and children. 

21st century devices are often blamed for creating a barrier between family conversations -- especially with kids -- but did Charlie Brown have a cell phone, game device or music player? The “wonk wonk” noise from all adults in the famed comic strip is no different than today’s kids tuning out adults and tuning in to a device.

But, as Jan Hoffman points out in a recent New York Times’ Well blog, parents and kids today can successfully have a more meaningful discussion than ever before… and, surprise, surprise, kids just might want to talk to their parents about it!

Do kids have a say in what happens to their parents in a health emergency if their parents can’t communicate? Do parents really know what is important to their children if the roles are reversed? 

Research shows that failing to have these important conversations can result in teenagers feeling scared and isolated. Children deserve to know their voices can be heard and that they can make a difference. The alternative can haunt them for a lifetime.

MyDirectives applauds Jan Hoffman for drawing attention to a meaningful topic. When families have a clear understanding around a person’s goals and wishes, no matter his or her age, a health crisis can be navigated with more empowerment and less fear. More confidence and less guilt. More respect and less “wonk wonk.”


advance care planning Jan Hoffman New York Times parents

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